Castanea sativa - Wikipedia

Castanea sativa – Wikipedia

Castanea sativa, the candy chestnut, Spanish chestnut or simply chestnut, is a species of tree within the household Fagaceae, native to Southern Europe and Asia Minor, and extensively cultivated all through the temperate world. A considerable, long-lived deciduous tree, it produces an edible seed, the chestnut, which has been utilized in cooking since historic occasions.

The tree is to be distinguished from the horse chestnut Aesculus hippocastanum, to which it’s only distantly associated. The horse chestnut bears comparable wanting seeds (conkers) in the same seed case, which aren’t palatable to people. Different frequent names embrace “Spanish chestnut”,[2] or “marron” (French for “chestnut”). The Latin sativa means “cultivated by people”.[3] Some chosen varieties are smaller and extra compact in development yielding earlier in life with completely different ripening time: the Marigoule, the Marisol and the Maraval.[citation needed]

Description[edit]

C. sativa attains a top of 20–35 m (66–115 ft) with a trunk usually 2 m (7 ft) in diameter. The bark usually has a net-shaped (retiform) sample with deep furrows or fissures operating spirally in each instructions up the trunk. The trunk is generally straight with branching beginning at low heights. Candy chestnut timber reside to an age of 500 to 600 years.[4] In cultivation they could even develop as previous as 1000 years or extra.[5] Their giant genetic range and completely different cultivars are exploited for makes use of corresponding to flour, boiling, roasting, drying, sweets or wooden.[6] The oblong-lanceolate, boldly toothed leaves are 16–28 cm (6–11 in) lengthy and 5–9 cm (2–4 in) broad.

Copy[edit]

The flowers of each sexes are borne in 10–20 cm (4–8 in) lengthy, upright catkins, the male flowers within the higher half and feminine flowers within the decrease half. Within the northern hemisphere, they seem in late June to July, and by autumn, the feminine flowers grow to be spiny cupules containing 3-7 brownish nuts which might be shed throughout October. The feminine flowers ultimately kind a spiky sheath that deters predators from the seed.[7] The candy chestnut is naturallyself incompatible, that means that the plant can not pollinate itself, making cross-pollination essential.[5] Some cultivars solely produce one giant seed per cupule, whereas others produce as much as three seeds.[5] The nut itself consists of two skins: an exterior, shiny brown half, and an inside pores and skin adhering to the fruit. Inside, there’s an edible, creamy-white half developed from the cotyledon.[5]

Habitat[edit]

The tree requires a light local weather and sufficient moisture for good development and a great nut harvest. Its year-growth (however not the remainder of the tree)[8] is delicate to late spring and early autumn frosts, and is illiberal of lime. Below forest circumstances, it is going to tolerate reasonable shade properly. It could possibly reside to greater than 2,000 years of age in pure circumstances, see the poetically-named “hundred-horse chestnut” in japanese Sicily for instance.

Pests and illnesses[edit]

The leaves present meals for some animals, together with Lepidoptera such because the case-bearer moth Coleophora anatipennella and North American rose chafer Macrodactylus subspinosus.

The 2 main fungal pathogens of the candy chestnut are the chestnut blight (Cryphonectria parasitica) and the ink illness brought on by Phytophthora cambivora and Phytophthora cinnamomi.[9][10] In North America in addition to in Southern Europe Cryphonectria parasitica destroyed many of the chestnut inhabitants within the 20th century. With organic management, the inhabitants of the candy chestnut shouldn’t be threatened anymore by the chestnut blight and is regenerating.[6][11] Ink illness is infesting timber largely in humid soils, with the mycelium invading the basis and leading to wilting of the leaf. Absence of fruit formation results in die again of the petal. The ink illness is called after the black exudates on the base of the trunk.[10] These days there are cultivars which might be immune to the ink illness. Phytophthora cambivora precipitated critical harm in Asia and the US, and it nonetheless continues to destroy new plantations in Europe.[10]

One other critical pest which is tough to regulate is the gall wasp (Dryocosmus kuriphylus) which was lately launched in Southern Europe, originating from Asia.[6]

Historic improvement[edit]

The 450-year-old Spanish chestnut tree at Balmerino in Fife

C. sativa is discovered throughout the Mediterranean area, from the Caspian Sea to the Atlantic Ocean. It’s thought to have survived the final Ice Age in a number of refuges in southern Europe, on the southern coast of the Black Sea with a foremost centre on the southern slope of the Caucasus and within the area of north-western Syria, probably extending into Lebanon.[12] Pollen information signifies that the primary spreading of C. sativa as a consequence of human exercise began round 2100-2050 B.C. in Anatolia, northeastern Greece and southeastern Bulgaria.[13] In comparison with different crops, the candy chestnut was in all probability of comparatively minor significance and distributed very heterogeneously all through these areas.[13] The primary charcoal stays of candy chestnut solely date from round 850-950 B.C., making it very tough to deduce a exact origin historical past. A more recent however extra dependable supply are the literary works of Historic Greece, with the richest being Theophrastus’ Inquiry into vegetation written within the third century B.C.[12] Theophrastus focuses primarily on using candy chestnut wooden as timber and charcoal, solely mentioning using the fruit as soon as when commenting on the digestive difficulties it causes, however praising its nourishing high quality.[12] A number of Greek authors wrote about medicinal properties of the candy chestnut, particularly as a treatment towards lacerations of the lips and of the oesophagus.[12]

Much like the introduction of grape vine and olive cultivation to the Latin world, C. sativa is believed to have been launched in the course of the colonisation of the Italian peninsula by the Greeks.[14] Additional clues pointing to this concept could be discovered within the work of Pliny the Elder, who mentions solely Greek colonies in reference to candy chestnut cultivation.[12] Right this moment’s phylogenetic map of the candy chestnut, whereas not totally understood, reveals higher genetic similarity between Italian and western Anatolian C. sativa timber in comparison with japanese Anatolian specimen, reinforcing these findings.[15] Nonetheless, till the top of the pre-Christian period, the unfold and use of the chestnut in Italy remained restricted.[12] Carbonised candy chestnuts had been discovered within the Roman Villa Torre Annunziata, destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79.[16]

Clues in artwork and literature point out a dislike of the candy chestnut by the Roman aristocracy.[12] Like Theophrastus, Latin authors are sceptical of the candy chestnut as a fruit, and Pliny the Elder even goes so far as admiring how properly nature has hidden this fruit of apparently so little worth.[12] At first of the Christian period, folks in all probability began to understand the worth and flexibility of candy chestnut wooden, resulting in a gradual unfold of the cultivation of C. sativa timber, a concept that’s supported by pollen information and literary sources, in addition to the elevated use of candy chestnut wooden as poles and in supporting buildings, wooden works and pier constructing between A.D. 100 and 600.[12]

Growing candy chestnut pollen appearances in Switzerland, France, Germany and the Iberian peninsula within the first century A.D. suggests the spreading of cultivated candy chestnut timber by the Romans.[17][18] Opposite to that notion, different scientists discovered no indication of the Romans spreading C. sativa earlier than the fifth century.[19] Whereas the husks of candy chestnuts, dated to the third or early fourth century, have been recognized from the underside of a Roman properly at Nice Holts Farm, Boreham, UK; this accretion contains stays of different unique meals vegetation and gives no proof that any of them originated domestically. No different proof of candy chestnut in Roman Britain has been confirmed.[20] Certainly, no middle of candy chestnut cultivation outdoors the Italian peninsula in Roman occasions has been detected.[12] Widespread use of chestnut in western Europe began within the early Center Ages and flourished within the late Center Ages.[21] Within the mid-seventh-century Lombard legal guidelines a composition of 1 solidi is about for felling a chestnut tree (or, additionally, hazel, pear or apple) belonging to a different individual (Edictus Rothari, No. 301, 643 CE). Because the starting of the 20th century, as a consequence of depopulation of the countryside and the abandonment of the candy chestnut as a staple meals in addition to the unfold of chestnut blight and ink illness, C. sativa cultivation has dramatically decreased.[21] These days, candy chestnut manufacturing is typically seen at a turning level once more, as a result of the event of high-value candy chestnut merchandise mixed with altering wants of an city society is resulting in a revival in C. sativa cultivation.[22]

Distribution[edit]

The species is extensively distributed all through Europe, the place in 2004 C. sativa was grown on 2.25 million hectares of forest, of which 1.78 million hectares had been primarily cultivated for wooden and 0.43 million hectares for fruit manufacturing.[22] Italy, France, southern Switzerland, Spain, Portugal and Greece are nations with a powerful candy chestnut custom, with timber cultivated intensively in coppices and orchards. International locations like England, Croatia, Turkey and Georgia solely have {a partially} developed candy chestnut custom as a consequence of geography or historical past. Nonetheless, centuries-old specimens could also be present in Nice Britain as we speak. Examples could be seen notably within the London Boroughs of Islington and Camden. In different European nations, C. sativa has solely been launched lately, for instance in Slovakia or the Netherlands.[22]

The species is extensively cultivated for its edible seeds (additionally referred to as nuts) and for its wooden.

A tree grown from seed might take 20 years or extra earlier than it bears fruits, however a grafted cultivar corresponding to ‘Marron de Lyon’ or ‘Paragon’ might begin manufacturing inside 5 years of being planted. Each cultivars bear fruits with a single giant kernel, moderately than the standard two to 4 smaller kernels.[8]

Candy chestnut has been listed as one of many 38 substances used to arrange Bach flower cures,[23] a sort of various drugs promoted for its supposed impact on well being. Nonetheless, in keeping with Most cancers Analysis UK, “there is no such thing as a scientific proof to show that flower cures can management, treatment or stop any kind of illness, together with most cancers”.[24]

Cultivation[edit]

Cultivation types[edit]

Three completely different cultivation methods for the candy chestnut could be distinguished:[25]

  • Coppicing: Primarily for wooden extraction. Commonplace circumstances yield 15 m3 wooden per ha and yr.
  • Selve: Fruit manufacturing from grafted timber. The timber have a brief tribe and a giant crown. Timber have a excessive density and the bottom between the timber is usually used as pasture.
  • Excessive forest: Wooden and fruit manufacturing. This cultivation kind is much less intensive with a yield of 4-12 dt/ha and substitute of timber each 50–80 years. The timber develop from seeds and construct a dense cover.

The sphere administration depends on the cultivation system. Whereas cleansing the soil from the leaves and pruning is the norm, using fertilizer, irrigation and pesticides is much less frequent and reserved for extra intensive cultivation.[26]

Necessities[edit]

The candy chestnut tree grows properly on limestone-free, deeply weathered soil.[27] The optimum pH worth of the soil is between 4.5 and 6, and the tree can not tolerate soil compaction.[25] The tolerance to moist floor and to clay-rich soils could be very low.[28] It’s a heat-loving tree which wants a protracted vegetation interval. The optimum common temperature is between 8 °C and 15 °C[25] and in January the temperature ought to ideally not be beneath -1 °C[27] however it might tolerate temperatures as little as -15 °C.[25] Low temperature in autumn can harm the fruit.[27] The maximal altitude is strongly depending on the local weather. Usually, the local weather needs to be just like viticulture.[25] Optimum precipitation is between 400 and 1600 mm.[28] Earlier than planting, seeds should be stratified at 2-3 °C so germination can begin 30–40 days later. After a yr, the younger timber are being transplanted.[25]

Harvest[edit]

The fruit yield per tree is normally between 30–100 kg, however can get as excessive as 300 kg.[25] Harvest time is between center of September and center of November. There are three harvesting methods:

  • By hand: The candy chestnuts are harvested by rake or broom, with a harvest pace of 5 to 30 kg each hour relying on the soil reduction. Additionally, the capsule makes the harvest extra sophisticated and even painful for the employee.[28]
  • By hand with nets: This system is much less time-consuming and protects the fruits from accidents. Nonetheless, organising the nets is figure intensive.
  • Mechanical: The fruits are collected with a machine that works equally to a vacuum cleaner. Doing so is time-saving and economical, however it’s potential that some fruits get injured, and a giant preliminary funding is required. Moreover, a visible sorting shouldn’t be potential.

The whole world chestnut harvest was 1,17 Mio Tons in 2006, however solely 151 000 Tons had been C. sativa.[29]

Put up-harvest remedy[edit]

Probably the most widespread remedy earlier than storage is water curing, a course of during which the candy chestnuts are immersed in water for 9 days.[30] The goal of this follow is to restrict the primary storage issues threatening the candy chestnut: fungi improvement and the presence of insect worms.[30] As a substitute for water curing, scorching water remedy can also be commercially used.

After water remedy, the candy chestnuts are saved in a managed atmosphere with excessive carbon dioxide concentrations. In distinction to a chilly storage system, the place the fruits are saved at low temperatures in untreated air, the managed atmosphere methodology avoids flesh hardening which negatively impacts the processability of the product.[30]

The uncooked nuts, although edible, have a pores and skin which is astringent and ugly to eat when nonetheless moist; after drying for a time the skinny pores and skin loses its astringency however remains to be higher eliminated to achieve the white fruit beneath. Cooking dry in an oven or fireplace usually helps take away this pores and skin. Chestnuts are historically roasted of their robust brown husks after eradicating the spiny cupules during which they develop on the tree, the husks being peeled off and discarded and the recent chestnuts dipped in salt earlier than consuming them. Roast chestnuts are historically bought in streets, markets and gala’s by road distributors with cell or static braziers.

The pores and skin of uncooked peeled chestnuts could be comparatively simply eliminated by shortly blanching the nuts after scoring them by a cross slit on the tufted finish.[31] As soon as cooked, chestnuts purchase a candy flavour and a floury texture just like the candy potato. The cooked nuts can be utilized for stuffing poultry, as a vegetable or in nut roasts. They will also be utilized in confections, puddings, desserts and desserts. They’re used for flour, bread making, a cereal substitute, espresso substitute, a thickener in soups and different cookery makes use of, in addition to for fattening inventory. A sugar could be extracted from them.[8] The Corsican number of polenta (referred to as pulenta) is made with candy chestnut flour. An area number of Corsican beer additionally makes use of chestnuts. The product is bought as a sweetened paste combined with vanilla, crème de marrons [fr], sweetened or unsweetened as chestnut purée or purée de marron, and candied chestnuts as marrons glacés.[32]
In Switzerland, it’s usually served as Vermicelles.

Roman troopers got chestnut porridge earlier than going into battle.[7]

Leaf infusions are utilized in respiratory illnesses and are a well-liked treatment for whooping cough.[8] A hair shampoo could be produced from infusing leaves and fruit husks.[8]

Meals constituents[edit]

Castanea sativa is taken into account as having very attention-grabbing dietary traits. The fruit accommodates important quantities of a variety of precious vitamins. Previously, its attribute and dietary elements gave candy chestnut an vital position in human diet as a consequence of its useful well being results.[33][34][35] Candy chestnut can also be appreciated in a gluten-free eating regimen. Moreover, this attribute is effective in circumstances of celiac illnesses[36] in addition to lowering coronary coronary heart illnesses and most cancers charges.[37] Numerous composition and well being research have proven its large potential as a meals ingredient and purposeful meals.[35][38] The fats content material could be very low and is dominated for probably the most half by unsaturated fatty acids.[39][40] Candy chestnut is an efficient supply for starch,;[41] chestnuts of all varieties usually include about the identical quantity of starch.[42] The vitality worth per 100 g (3.5 oz) of C. sativa quantities to 891 kJ (213 kcal).[43] C. sativa is characterised by excessive moisture content material which ranges from 41% to 59%[44] and a substantial degree of starch (≈40 g 100 g−1 dry matter). Concerning mineral content material, the chestnut gives a great supply for Cu, Fe, Mg, Mn and Ok.[39] Its sugar content material ranges from 14% to 20% dry weight relying on the cultivar;[45] which is essential, because the sensory enchantment of candy chestnut is correlated with its sugar content material. Nonetheless, excessive sugar quantities appear to have a adverse influence on the fiber content material.[46] Usually, glucose content material in European chestnuts could be very low and ranges from zero to traces. As a substitute, fructose is generally accountable for the candy style.[45]

Impact of processing[edit]

Candy chestnut is suited to human diet. Most candy chestnut is consumed in processed kind, which has an influence on the nutrient composition. Its naturally excessive focus of natural acids is a key issue influencing the organoleptic traits of vegatables and fruits, particularly taste.[41] Natural acids are thought to play an vital position towards illnesses as an antioxidant.[47][48] Warmth seems to be probably the most influencing issue in relation to lowering the natural acid content material. Nonetheless, even after heating candy chestnuts, antioxidant exercise stays comparatively excessive.[49] Then again, the buyer should think about that roasting, boiling or frying has a big effect on the dietary profile of chestnut.[47][50]Vitamin C considerably decreases between 25-54 % when boiled and 2-77 % when roasted. Nonetheless, roasted or boiled chestnuts should still be a stable vitamin C supply, since 100 gram nonetheless signify about 20% of the really useful day by day dietary consumption. The sugar content material can also be affected by the excessive temperatures. 4 processes are decisive for the degrading means of sugar whereas cooking: hydrolysis of starch to oligosaccharide and monosaccharide, decomposition of sucrose to glucose and fructose, caramelization of sugars and degradation of sugars.[51] Natural acids are additionally affected by excessive temperatures: their content material decreases about 50% after frying, and 15% after boiling.[49] Liable for the fragrant traits of cooked chestnuts is the impact of degradation of saccharides, proteins and lipids, the caramelization of saccharides and the maillard response that’s lowering sugar and amino acids.[52][53]

This tree responds very properly to coppicing, which remains to be practised in Britain, and produces a great crop of tannin-rich wooden each 12 to 30 years, relying on meant use and native development fee. The tannin renders the younger rising wooden sturdy and climate resistant for outside use, thus appropriate for posts, fencing or stakes.[54] The wooden is of sunshine color, laborious and robust. It’s used to make furnishings, barrels (typically used to age balsamic vinegar), and roof beams notably in southern Europe (for instance in homes of the Alpujarra, Spain, in southern France and elsewhere). The timber has a density of 560 kg per cubic meter,[55] and as a consequence of its sturdiness in floor contact is usually used for exterior functions corresponding to fencing.[55] It is usually a great gas, although not favoured for open fires because it tends to spit.[8]

Tannin is discovered within the following proportions on a 10% moisture foundation: bark (6.8%), wooden (13.4%), seed husks (10 – 13%). The leaves additionally include tannin.[8]

Cultivars[edit]

The decorative cultivar C. sativa ‘Albomarginata’[56] has gained the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Backyard Benefit

French origin[edit]

American origin[edit]

See additionally[edit]

References[edit]

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  2. ^ Royal Botanic Backyard, Sydney blooming calendar Archived 2009-10-05 on the Wayback Machine
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Media associated to Castanea sativa at Wikimedia Commons


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