Hazelnuts grow on large trees (up to 5 metres high) and require more than one variety to cross-pollinate. The flowers bloom in winter and in spring, they are fertilised and nuts start to form in little clusters. In summer months, they turn from green to hazel and are ready to harvest in late summer/autumn when they fall to the ground.
They are one of the most nutritious nuts. Hazelnuts are an excellent source of vitamin E, dietary fiber, protein, magnesium, and heart healthy B vitamins. Recent research also shows that hazelnuts are one of the highest natural sources of antioxidants.
Hazelnuts are believed to have originated in Asia and Europe. Today the principal hazelnut growing regions are Turkey, Spain, Italy and the US. Most hazelnuts in Australia come from Turkey, however there are some small orchards in NSW and Victoria.