The Filbert, in many varieties, and also the common Ha-zlenut, grow spontaneously in the woods of Britain, and some few varieties are indigenous in this country. The kinds of Filberts generally cultivated are the white, red, cob, clustered, and frizzled; of each of which there are many varieties. As this shrub is so easily cultivated, it is a matter of astonishment that the nuts from this genus of plants are so scarce in our markets. In different parts of England there are Filbert orchards. In the Filbert grounds about Maidstone, in Kent, it is a prevailing practice to cultivate Hops, standard Apples, and Cherries, among the Filberts; when these come into a bearing state, the Hops are taken up and transplanted elsewhere, and the fruit trees only suffered to remain. The spare ground is then planted with Gooseberries, Currants, etc. The Red Filbert is allowed to have a finer flavour than the White. The Cobnut is large, with a thick shell, but the kernel is sweet and of considerable size. The Barcelona is a good large nut, with a thin shell. The Cosford is very sweet, kernels well, and the tree is a great bearer. The Bond Nut, and the Lambert Nut are of large size, roundish shape, and very prolific bearers. The Frizzled Filbert is highly esteemed. It is beautiful when in the husk, and its flavour is very similar to that of the White Filbert; the shell of which is also thin, and its kernel sweet and fine.
All the different kinds may be grown as dwarf standards; or they will bear very well if planted in clumps: but as they produce an abundance of suckers, these should be parted off frequently, and planted in a nursery bed for stocks; as the bearing plants will cease to produce fruit in any quantity, if the suckers are allowed to form a thick bush. They may be propagated by seed, by suckers, by layers, or by grafting in the spring upon seedling or sucker stocks.
The Filbert bears principally upon the sides of the upper young branches, and upon small shoots which proceed from the bases of side branches cut off the preceding year. The leading shoot is every year to be shortened, and every shoot that is left to produce fruit should be clipped; which prevents the tree from being exhausted in making wood at the end of the branch. Such branches as may have borne fruit, must be cut out every year, in order to promote the growth of a supply of young fruit-bearing branches.