Green Almonds, a Celebration of Spring

These fuzzy green pods are green almonds, baby nutlets, which appear on the trees after the blooms fall.

Cousin to the peach, plum, and apricot, Prunus amygdalus, the almond is the first fruit tree to bloom in spring. Once the fragrant almond blossoms fall, clusters of pale green pods remain on its branches. Called ‘green almonds’, these embryonic almonds will grow into the nut we all know.

In the early stages, dainty almond pods resemble fuzzy, unripe peaches, with none of their juicy pulp. (Ever tasted the bitter kernel inside an apricot or peach pit? That’s a distant cousin of the sweet almond we eat today.) If you wait 7 months, the budlets will dry out and crack open revealing the pit, a hard shell containing a creamy almond within. (Read about my definition of the stages of green almonds here

Green almonds are eaten in different ways depending on ethnic traditions, geographic location and the stage of growth of the fruit. If you grew up in the Middle East or Turkey you might have eaten the pods whole when they are still young and tender,