Chinese chestnut trees

Asked August 21, 2019, 4:31 PM EDT

Last fall I asked about these chestnut trees while harvested over 6 lb. of (about 300) chestnuts. Early this summer there're full of flowers over three trees expecting full of chestnuts. However right now there're only few chestnuts (probably not even 20 fruits on the trees). I wonder if these threes are bi-yearly fruit bearing like dozen of apple trees on my field. But the apple trees didn't have many flower blossom during the odd year with only few apples. (This year those apple trees had plenty of flowers and, consequently, tons of fruits on the trees now.) What could be the problem on those chestnut trees?

Genesee County Michigan

3 Responses

Biannual bearing is definitely an issue in chestnut. Are they seedlings or cultivars (e.g. Colossal, bdb, precoce migoule)? If cultivars, you may want to look at your pollenizer diversity. You can read more about that here https://www.canr.msu.edu/chestnuts/establishing_orchards/orchard-design-establishment

Thanks for the message. I'll get a soil meter to check ph value. The chestnut trees in questions were planted from seedlings in 2011. (I planted 100 but only 3 have grown up to over 8' tall and bear fruits, the rest were either less than 2' or not even coming out at all.) Attached pics show those three fruit-bearing trees' leave look not healthy. Do you think there is problem on those three?

The most obvious issues I can see are from potato leafhopper (yellowing, curling and necrosis) and beetle feeding (holes in leaves from Japanese beetle or rose chafer). You can read more about it those here https://www.canr.msu.edu/chestnuts/pest_management/insects