For the enthusiast or commercial grower

A detailed study on nut growing with the opportunity to specialise, to some degree, according to your interests. Eight lessons cover culture, site selection and planning, common & uncommon nut varieties, propagation, soils, pests & diseases, harvesting, & more.

Growing Nut Trees and Plants

  • Operate a Nut Farm
  • Diversify an established Farm
  • Use nut trees as a Shelter Belt on a Farm
  • Self paced, 100 hour course

Nuts have a distinct advantage over soft fruits. Being a dry product, they are less susceptible to spoilage, and will generally store well without any sophisticated or expensive storage treatments. This characteristic alone extends their marketing life, and can eliminate many problems associated with other types of crops. (Note: They may need protection from pests though (e.g. rodents and other vermin).

There are many nuts which are grown and known in one region, but not commonly heard of in other parts of the world. This is particularly the case in many tropical areas, where nuts which are eaten by local natives may offer significant potential for future commercial cropping.


There are 8 lessons as follows:

  1. Introduction: Identify different nut crop varieties
  2. The Most Commonly Grown Varieties: Compare the culture of different commonly grown varieties of nuts.
  3. Culture of Nuts: Determine the cultivation practices appropriate to a range of different nut crops;   Planting, staking, mulching, watering, pest & disease, feeding, pruning, protection from wind, salt, air, etc.
  4. Less Common Nuts: Describe the culture of different less commonly grown varieties of nuts
  5. Propagation: Determine how to propagate a range of different nut plants.
  6. Harvest & Post-harvest of Nuts: Determine appropriate techniques for harvesting a nut crop.    Specify an appropriate post-harvest treatment for a nut crop.
  7. Marketing Nuts: Develop marketing strategies for nuts.
  8. Workplace Health and Safety: Identify risk issues specific to the nut production industry.

Plus - Special Assignment - On one selected nut group or variety.

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.

Duration: 100 hours



On successful completion of the course you should be able to do the following:
  • Identify different nut crop varieties.
  • Determine the cultivation practices appropriate to a range of different nut crops.
  • Determine how to propagate a range of different nut plants.
  • Determine appropriate techniques for harvesting a nut crop.
  • Specify an appropriate post-harvest treatment for a nut crop.
  • Develop marketing strategies for nuts.


Here are just some of the things you will be doing:

  • Distinguish between common and scientific perceptions of the term nut.
  • Compare the botanical characteristics of the fruits from five different nut genera.
  • Describe the botanical classification of twenty different species of nut plants, including where appropriate, botanical interrelationships.
  • Prepare a plant collection of twenty-five different nut varieties, including the following details on each plant:
    • Plant names (Common and scientific)
    • A photo, illustration or pressed specimen
    • Cultural details
    • Harvest & Post-harvest
    • Uses (e.g. valuable products).
  • Develop a resource file of forty items of information relevant to the nut growing industry, including:
    • Suppliers of nut plants
    • Trade or grower associations
    • Publications
  • Perform simple tests on three different soils to determine:
    • Soil type
    • pH
    • Drainage
    • Water holding capacity
  • Evaluate three different soils tested in 2.1 to determine nut varieties suitable for growing in each.
  • Explain soil management requirements for at least ten different nut varieties, including:
    • Nutrition
    • Soil structure
    • Physical attributes
  • Explain the control of twenty different pests and diseases on ten different nut varieties.
  • Develop guidelines for the culture of a specified variety of nut, in the learner's locality, including:
    • Watering
    • Weed control
    • Soil management
    • Fertilising
    • Pest control
    • Disease control
  • Prepare a twelve month plan for cultural practices on a specified nut plantation.
  • Explain different methods of propagating five different nut species, including:
    • Seed
    • Grafting
    • Layering
    • Cuttings
  • Determine propagation methods for fifteen different nut species, including where applicable, rootstock variety names.
  • Demonstrate how to prepare cuttings for two different nut species.
  • Demonstrate three different types of grafts, suitable for propagating nut varieties.
  • Determine seed germination procedures for ten different nut genera.
  • Prepare a production schedule, for nursery production of a specified type of nut.
  • Propagate two different nut plant varieties.
  • Explain the operation of a mechanical harvester which can be used for nuts.
  • Determine when to harvest four different specified nut species.
  • Compare the efficiency of four different techniques for harvesting nuts.
  • Describe two different storage techniques for a specified nut variety.
  • Determine the optimum environmental conditions for the storage of three different nut species.
  • Evaluate three different samples of nuts, which have been stored using three different techniques.
  • Determine the commercial processing techniques used for five specified nut species.
  • Explain post-harvest handling of a specified nut species, by a commercial plantation in a specified locality.
  • Determine different ways in which nuts can be consumed.
  • Compare different ways nuts are packaged for retailing, with reference to different factors including:
    • Physiological impact on the nut
    • Cost of packaging
    • Presentation
  • Explain the marketing of two different specified nut products, in the learners locality.
  • Develop a marketing plan for one specified type of nut.

Lots of Commercial Potential

There are lots more edible nuts than what you might realize; and the potential to grow and sell nuts or nut products as a commercial crop is boundless.

Many nuts are important foods for indigenous peoples; but their use isn't always what it was or could be in the developed world. Some of these "traditional" foods are being rediscovered; and some have more commercial potential than others, particularly in niche markets (e.g. gourmet or health foods).

Some nuts grow on trees (both tall and short), others on shrubs; and others (eg. peanut) are small bushes grown as field crops.

Some growers maintain acres of nut tree orchards or fields of nut bushes; and specialize in only one type of nut. This isn't the way it has to be though. Nuts can be grown as hedge rows or shade trees on mixed produce farms. You can graze animals under walnut trees, or plant rows of nut trees around paddocks as a windbreak, then grow vegetables or grain crops in the paddock. 

Nut trees can provide a farmer with a valuable source of supplementary income; or an additional food source for the family.
You can even grow nuts on a suburban house block or a small acreage. Even a small property can give enough production to provide quite a significant income; particularly if you value add to the product before selling it. Consider, for instance; growing almonds in a home garden; harvesting, shelling and processing the nuts to produce almond meal (flour) before selling it.





Just go to the top of this page for pricing and enrolment options. If you have any questions you can contact us now, by:
Phone (UK) 01384 44272, (International) +44 (0) 1384 442752, or

Email us at [email protected]