Q: We are considering planting an almond tree next spring. Will an almond produce in Georgia?
A: You can try to grow almonds in Georgia, but only if you have a high capacity for heartbreak. Almonds are close kin to peaches so they have the same multitude of diseases and pests. They require hot, dry summers but plenty of soil-applied irrigation. An almond fruit looks like a miniature peach, about the size of a golf ball. In late summer the fruit splits open to reveal an inner shell, which contains the almond nut. If the weather is rainy or if there is high humidity, the fruit will rot without opening. With luck you may get a few almonds each year but probably not enough to make it worth the trouble. According to fruit expert Gerard Krewer, the best home orchard variety is ‘Halls Hardy.’ It is late blooming, self-fertile and hard-shelled.