Pistachio

Pistacia vera
Anacardiaceae, Cashew Family
Pistachio nuts ripening on tree
Pistachio nuts ripening on tree
“If it must be, then do this: Put some of the best products of the land in your bags and take them down to the man as a gift—a little balm and a little honey, some spices and myrrh, some pistachio nuts and almonds.
Genesis 43:11
Pistachio nuts ripening on tree
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23

Cultural Information

TypeEdible Trees
Height30 feet
Soildry,
Exposurefull sun
Leavesdeciduous, dense, ovalish, clustered leaflets
Flowerspetite, petal-less, grow in panicles, blushed red to pale green, appear before leaves, male and female flowers grow on separate trees
Fruitnuts form in clusters by early summer, muted red hull or exocarp, harvest in September

Planting Tips

  • Zone 9 with 600 to 100 chilling hours
  • Pistachio trees need desert-like conditions, tolerating no rainfall in August and September
  • Require low humidity and moderate but not extreme wind exposure
  • Best regions for pistachio crops are California and Arizona in the U.S., Australia, Greece, Italy, Syria and Iran world-wide
  • Trees have a deep taproot and vigorous root system
  • Nuts are harvested from trees, not from the ground
  • Plan on bird protection of nut crops!

Garden to Table

  • Pistachio trees have fairly precise cultural needs, but thankfully their nuts are plentiful in markets and grocery stores
  • Nuts have a high protein, low sugar content
  • Great as a stand alone snack or mixed with other nuts or dried fruits
  • Toast nuts lightly a few moments before tossing on salads or side dishes for a flavorful pop

Additional Resources

See Blog Posts on Pistachio
The Hebrew name for this nut is derived from the word for “belly” (Hebrew, beten), or the innermost part of something, its deep insides or womb...the plant has no showy flowers and no alluring scent, just the electrifying green color and unrivaled flavor in the belly of the little yet plentiful fruits. As we deepen in our understanding of the Lord’s fruit-bearing work, we see that he intends for his Spirit within us to become our distinguishing identity, for everything we do to bear his Spirit, being displayed from our innermost being.
-from the NIV God's Word for Gardeners Bible
Pistachio nuts ripening on tree
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23

Photo Credits

© 3rddimension | Dreamstime.com - Pistachio orchard, Aegina island, full of pistachio nuts, May 2012
© Almaamor | Dreamstime.com - Pistachio nuts ripening on branch
© Colour59 | Dreamstime.com - Plentiful Pistachios, their vibrant green peeking through shells
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