For a complete background on how to grow chestnut trees, we recommend starting from the beginning. Chinese water chestnuts are a member of the sedge family and look like a 2-3' tubular grass. Growing a chestnut tree from a seed requires you follow a few steps in order for the seedling to develop correctly. Water Chestnut Climate Requirements. Plant in spring when temperatures are beginning to rise and the ground is soft and not too dry. Until then, follow these guidelines to get your new trees off to a great start. Green Harvest provides growing information for edible and useful plants in the organic and permaculture garden. They grow like crazy, as mentioned previously, and the “nuts” will be all over the place beneath the muck in about 6-7 months. The soil should be loamy with a pH 0f 4.5-6.5. For low-work yield, they’re hard to beat. The water chestnut (Eleocharis dulcis) is a type of sedge that is found growing in tropical wetlands of the world.They are simple to grow, highly productive, and nutritious. When to Plant Chestnuts. Choose wisely. Before you begin, make sure that you have enough space for two trees. Alternately, you can grow water chestnuts in kiddie pools or swampy areas. Given suitable soil and site conditions, Chinese chestnuts and their hybrids grow quickly and start to bear at a young age — typically about their fourth year. Chinese water chestnuts will perform well for you if: You’re in USDA plant hardiness zones 8 through 11 with a frost-free growing season of at least seven months, OR; You’re in USDA plant hardiness zones 4 through 7 and can start the plants indoors from three months to one month before your last spring frost date. Soil Requirements. Waterchestnuts are an aquatic rush-like plant to 1m tall, native to swampy, tropical areas of Asia that produce crunchy delicious tubers Growing water chestnuts is totally easy. Poke planting holes in the worked soil with the back of a rake. NOTE: This is part 10 in a series of 11 articles. You also need to decide if you are going to start your seeds indoors or outdoors. Just wait – within a few days, that chestnut will pop up. This is *the* most important consideration when planting chestnuts. Except in times of drought, you probably won’t need to water after your tree is established. Plant the chestnuts soon after gathering in late fall. Make sure that each chestnut tree you plant has 40 feet (12.2 m) (12 m) of free soil space in all directions to allow for adequate growing room. At the base of the reedy growth, under a mat of roots, you'll find the edible corms, or "chestnuts." Free draining soil is imperative for growing chestnut trees. 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