Pistachio is a dry fruit rich in properties and nutrients that is often used in cooking for the preparation of various dishes. Although it is true that the seed of the pistachio (also known as its fruit) is distributed throughout the world, its crops are found in very specific areas, since to grow the pistachio it is required that the climate of the region, its latitude and the soil have the ideal characteristics.
Are you thinking of planting one or more pistachio plants but don’t know how to do it? here we present you a simple step by step and several tips and advice so you can learn how to plant and grow pistachios. Each detail reflected below is essential for the pistachio seed to develop properly, so do not miss any of them. To plant!
How to plant pistachios
The first thing to ask yourself before planting pistachios is whether you are going to plant the seeds or the seedlings. Either of the two options is valid and easy, because you can get them in any nursery or even in online stores.
Among the basic requirements that are needed for your pistachios to develop properly we find: sandy soils with good drainage, enough space for your plant to grow (since it is a kind of deep roots), a sunny climate and a height always by above 500 meters above sea level. It should be noted that this tree is very resistant to droughts, as it can withstand up to 5 years without a drop of water thanks to its ability to withstand saline soils.
Now that you have the most basic information, we will teach you how to plant pistachios step by step:
- The first step you must follow if you want to learn how to plant pistachios is to place the seeds in a bowl of water overnight so that they begin to germinate properly.
- When morning comes, you can proceed to plant them in a pot or a seedbed. Make sure the substrate used has good drainage and is 60% sandy.
- Leave the seedbed or pot exposed in a place that is in full sunlight for 5 weeks. This is the average time it takes for a pistachio seed to germinate. Remember to keep the soil moist at all times; To do this, you will have to water it once a day (moisten, but never puddle).
- After 5 weeks, you should observe the first pistachio seedlings, which will develop into a fruitful pistachio tree in about 6 to 7 years after their final transplant.
- Once you have your pistachio sprouts, you will have to carefully remove them from the seedbed or pot.
- The time has come to identify the perfect place to plant them. Here we recommend that you bet on an open space that has highly sandy and well-drained soil where the sun often hits.
- Moisten the soil where you want your pistachio tree to grow but remember not to water it.
- Next, create mounds about 5 cm high with the soil substrate. Each mound, created with the intention of preventing the roots from flooding at the time of watering, will correspond to a pistachio seedling.
- Dig a hole about 3 cm deep in each mound and insert a pistachio seedling into each hole. Cover its edges with the substrate extracted from the ground.
- Water your plant well once a week only with the intention of moistening the soil, never watering it. It will be ready!
How to grow pistachios
For the development of the pistachio tree and the subsequent harvest to be a success, do not miss the following tips. Here we explain how to grow pistachios properly:
- For an optimal cultivation of the pistachio tree, it is necessary that it be planted in areas with 30º-45º N latitude. Few regions in the world have this particularity: Mediterranean regions, the Middle East and the southern United States (more specifically in California, where its main plantations are located).
- The ideal soil for the development of the pistachio plant must be sandy and with good drainage, because after all it is a desert species.
- The ideal time for sowing is winter, as it is when the plants enter a state of recession.
- The pistachio tree requires temperatures not lower than -10º C nor higher than 41º C to develop properly. However, it should be noted that, in extreme cases, this plant is capable of withstanding up to -30º C and 50º C.
- The ideal temperature for full development and to prevent the plant from getting sick is between 28 ° C and 35 ° C.
- In winter, the pistachio plant prefers low temperatures, as this way the flowering and subsequent pollination process can be carried out more easily.
- You should also take into account the varieties of this plant, since there are both males and females. Both are necessary for the pollination process and the growth of the fruits, since a male can supply pollen to up to 10 females.
- If you plan to grow a large number of pistachio trees, keep in mind that between one plant and another there should be at least 7 m of distance between rowsand about 5 m between one tree and another.
- You should also consider pruning: the first 6 years you should perform a training pruning. This is intended to give your plant the shape you want once it has fully developed. In general, the ideal tree shape is a vase with 3 main branches. After 6 years you must carry out a production pruning, which is based on achieving aeration and luminosity inside the tree.
- The watering of the pistachio tree depends on its variety, but usually requires 300 to 600 mm in areas with occasional rainfall. In arid regions it is advisable to irrigate with 4000 m3 / ha once a week if we are talking about large plantations.
- In general, the rustic nature of the pistachio tree makes it immune to a large number of pests and diseases. In fact, only biting insects can attack its fruits.
- The collection of the fruits of the pistachio tree is carried out at the end of August or at the beginning of September, when the fruit has a reddish-yellow appearance and its shell is ajar. The fruit is harvested with a machine called an umbrella vibrator.
Benefits of eating pistachios
If you are thinking of planting and growing your own pistachios, you cannot help but learn the incredible benefits that the consumption of this food can bring you.
- Fight nervousness: it is not one of the best-known benefits of this food, however, it is one of the most amazing. Pistachios are nuts that are very rich in magnesium, an anti-stress mineral that can help you find the balance of your central nervous system and combat the symptoms of nervousness and, to a lesser extent, anxiety.
- Perfect for people with diabetes: if you suffer from type 2 diabetes, pistachios cannot be missing in your kitchen. These nuts are low in carbohydrates and rich in the healthiest fatty acids that will help lower blood sugar levels. In this article on How to take care of diabetes you will find many other foods that cannot be missing from your diet.
- Lowers cholesterol naturally: pistachios are the perfect food to take good care of our heart. This is because they contain very high levels of phytosterols, components that directly attack cholesterol and reduce the levels of this substance in the blood. If you want a more complete list of the best Foods to lower cholesterol, this article will be very useful.
- Perfect for losing weight: did you know that pistachios are a highly satisfying food? If you are dieting and want to find a rich food that allows you to snack between meals and calm anxiety without gaining weight, pistachio is the solution you are looking for.
- They promote the proper functioning of the body: pistachios are rich in vitamins B1, B6, K and E. But, in addition, they contain high levels of folic acid, iron, potassium, magnesium, selenium and zinc, perfect properties for the proper functioning of the body.