Pine nuts are known not only in Siberia and the Far East, but also far beyond them. However, the main place of harvesting nuts occurs in the Siberian taiga.
Most cedar massifs grow on the stony placers of Eastern Siberia, in the west, as well as in the mountainous regions of southern Siberia. In these regions, the collection of cedar nut is an important fishery for the population. After all, the seeds of the Siberian pine are a valuable food product.
Table of contents
- When pine nuts ripen in Siberia?
- When do you pick pine nuts?
- How to collect pine cones?
- How to make a split for the extraction of pine nuts and how much does it weigh?
When pine nuts ripen in Siberia?
Siberian cedar is a wind-pollinated plant that has male and female inflorescences on the same tree. Brightly crimson shoots of male cones, located at the base of growth in the middle part of the tree. Female cones with shoots are in the upper part of the crown. Flowering period takes place in late May - early June.
- In the embryonic spring-summer period, the formation of ovules, their flowering and pollination occur. With the onset of a warm summer, cross-pollination and seed formation occur.
- After pollination, the ovules become tarry and keep the pollen in themselves for 11-12 months. Reaching the size of 1.5 - 2 cm in length, ovules take the form of a cedar cone. Overwintered cones are called ozimyu.
- Winter cones grow intensively and by July reach 5-7 cm .The cover turns into a shell. A bulge appears. Yellow color is replaced by a reddish-brown. The shape, color and size may vary depending on the age of the tree and weather conditions.
- In September, the nut is ripening. Dark brown bumps with an oily core( up to 79.5% of the oil) become dry, not resinous and light. Seeds are separated from the scales of cones. Mature cones when gusts of wind or blow to the trunk easily break from the trees.
The period of maturity begins in mid-August - early September. In mountainous areas, maturation occurs later. The ripening period can shift for 1-2 weeks in one direction or another. The maturity of nuts in different areas, the quantity and quality of future harvests are determined by the following factors:
- geographical location;
- terrain features — lowlands, plains, slopes, mountain elevations;
- growing conditions, the origin of the stand, the qualitative composition of forests;
- soil composition of land;
- tree age;
- meteorological conditions.
It is the latter factor that largely determines the time of nuts ripening, and also affects the yield. With the onset of early spring, cedar blooms in early - mid-June. With the arrival of late spring - flowering occurs at the end of the month.
With favorable warm and relatively dry weather, pollination begins after a few days. In case of bad weather, it is delayed for 2 weeks. At this time, the formation of the crop. With rainy cold summer the growth of cones of the current year slows down, they become resinous, one-sided. The cold start of summer has a negative impact on the yield of the next two years.
Due to incomplete pollination, the number of empty seeds increases, having a negative impact on the development of buds. Too hot summer promotes smolii, negatively affecting winter.
Cedar trees do not have consistent seed yield. The yields of cedar trees may vary significantly in different areas, and within the same plantation. Cedar pine fruits every two years. Average and high yields occur in 4-8 years. For a tree to break from fruit, this happens very rarely - once in 10-15 years.
When are pine nuts harvested?
Traditionally, the pine nut harvest season begins in early September, and in mountainous areas in the middle of the month. However, most often walnut extraction is carried out in Siberia. With a strong wind, mature buds on treetops are easily separated and fall. Ride along the slopes, they usually roll into heaps. Fallen bumps are called padans.
Collecting cones also begin when the fruit falls on impact with a prick or shaking the branches. Unscrupulous collectors begin to churn cones before they are fully ripe, thereby harming the food supply of forest animals and birds. Therefore, the local authorities officially set the dates for picking pine nuts.
Infringement of the rules is punishable by a fine.
For the local population, the time for gathering cedar fruits is limited, since the hunting season begins next. Harvest season ends after the first snow. But, it can also be carried out in case of snowfall, depending on the weather conditions and the thickness of the snow cover. Autumn season ends in late September - early October. Finishing to knock down and collect the cones, proceed to their processing.
In addition to the autumn collection, there is also a spring one. Depending on the weather from April to May, the cones are collected.
. How are pine cones collected?
Harvesting nuts is a time consuming and multi-step process. Therefore, several people are involved in the fishery. Getting off at the artels, they go into the taiga for weeks. In the forest camp and build temporary housing. Arrange storage space, peeling and sifting cones.
In search of fertile trees, sometimes you have to go the distance, follow the trail of wild animals. After all, they feel better where the high-yielding cedrachs are.
Collect cedar fruits in several ways:
- Pick up carrion fallen under gusts of wind. In this way do not harm nature. However, most cones are taken away by wild animals, and the cones are not evenly declining.
- Tree Climbing. A collector climbs a tree and, with the help of a long, pointed hook with a hook, hits the branches, knocking down cedar cones. Also knock the bumps off the branches with the help of long-flexible poles. This collection method is dangerous and less effective. Fallen bumps pick up and put in a bucket.
- Way of climbing with claws .Claws - special shoes with sharp iron spikes, with which it is easier to climb a tree. An additional insurance is a rope covering a tree trunk. Holding both ends of the rope, the person is in the same plane with the trunk, ensuring fast climbing and safety.
- A well-known method is to knock cones together with a log hammer - a hammer. Observing certain rules, the worker hits a tree with a giant hammer. From a few strokes, the trunk and branches begin to fluctuate. With the characteristic noise of the gathering of cones. If the bumps are weak, they tie ropes or reins to the stab, one on each side. Two people, at the moment of impact, they pull down. After such a reception mature cones fall hail. At this point, the main thing is to dodge. For a person, this method is safe and beneficial in relation to the time spent and the yield obtained. On the other hand, knocking the cones with a choke causes damage to the trunk and bark of the tree, thereby causing damage. Experienced craftsmen hammering down a tree trunk with only one side, so that by the next harvest the wounds can be baked with resin. After churning, collect fallen cones in special gloves( tops) and put in bags.
In the camp, the harvest is passed through a drum or a special grater consisting of rollers and teeth. Cones are crushed and shelled. After sifting through a sieve and sweep. Dried crops in the camp. The dryer is made of wooden log. A metal sheet with small holes is attached on top. Peeled nuts are poured on a sheet. In the inner part of the frame is maintained weak fire. Dry the nuts, stirring constantly. Overheated nuts lose useful properties, so it is best to dry the crop in the sun.
How to make a chopper for the extraction of pine nuts and how much does it weigh?
In the cedar fishery, it is difficult to do without a chuck. Having not a complicated structure, the choke can be made independently. The tool consists of a striker( chock), 65-80 cm long, 25–35 cm in diameter, and a leg( cutting) 2-2.5 m long. In the lower part of the trunk do gash "dovetail". It is important that the handle passes through the center of the striker.
Washed down made at an angle, so that the handle with a brisk could hold without the use of nails. The hammer should be perpendicular to the base of the chuck. This contributes to strikes after they have reached the equilibrium point. The weight and length of a stake is largely dependent on the physical training of the worker and the qualitative characteristics of the trees. The heavier the prick, the better the effect of knocking the cones. How much does he weigh? Weight ranges from 20 to 70 kg.