Why Do Almonds Need So Much Water? Do Almond Trees Cause Drought

The almond tree is among a specie of trees native to Iran and it’s neighbouring countries. This tree comes in different varieties and it’s nut, the almond nut, is a high value nut. This nut is used to produce the almond butter, almond milk, almond flour and syrup. It’s also used in cakes, chocolate, ice cream, cookies, and bread.

However, the almond is a water-intensive nut and so many questions arise concerning its water consumption. Questions also arise about the right climate to grow this plant. Let’s answer some of these questions.

Almond tree nuts in a bag

Do Almond Trees Need A Lot Of Water?

Yes, Almond trees need a lot of water. This is because almond is a nut and all nuts are water intensive crops. However, Almond farmers do need not agree with the popular notion that almond trees take up too much water. Almond farmers say that growing Almond trees only take up 10% of the town’s water supply. They also discredited the popular belief that it takes 1.1gallon to produce one almond and 1900 gallons to produce a pound.

Other nuts that are also water intensive are:

  • Pistachio
  • Walnuts
  • Cashews


These take 18.8 gallons per ounce. The pistachio, is a member of the cashew family, that originates from Central Asia and the Middle East. It is normally green kind of sweet. The pistachio has a surfeit amount of health benefits. Pistachios originated in Central Asia or The middle east , they are currently grown in Iran, Arizona, California and Mexico. They thrive in semi-desert climate with long, dry, hot summers, specifically 37° Celsius.


Walnuts need more than 50% of the annual water supply in the summer. A walnut is the edible seed of a drupe of the walnut tree. The walnut is round, single-seeded and just like other nuts it also has so many health benefits.


1 pound of cashew require about 6450 litres of water. The cashew is grown in many countries and continents like Nigeria, Vietnam, Côte d’Ivoire, Benin, Brazil, and India.

Why Do Almonds Need So Much Water?

This is because almond is a nut and all nuts are water intensive crops. Farmers have argued that almonds do not consume so much water, as they only consume 10% of their city’s water supply. Farmers have also compared the amount of water used in growing other nuts to Almond and said there was barely any difference. They say it’s the same amount of water used.

Do Almond Trees Bloom?

Yes indeed, Almond trees do bloom, very beautifully at that. In California, Almond trees bloom in-between February and early March. The tiny almond buds burst into beautiful white and light-pink blooms

Do Almond Trees Flower?

Yes, Almond trees flower during late February and early March. The almond tree flower is a five white to pale pink petals that fade to a magenta center. These flowers cover up the entire giving a radiant look.

If your almond tree isn’t flowering or blooming there’s no cause for alarm. One reasons for this is Wrong Pruning.

Every nut and fruit tree needs to be pruned yearly. However, if Almonds are pruned repeated, their crop yield will decline but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t prune your almond trees. Pruning should be done after the first growing season when primary scaffold selection has been done. Bear in mind when pruning that the goal is to create an open, upward shape. 1

Another reason for your Almond not blooming is that it could simple be taking a year off. If you had a very fruitful previous year chances are your tree put in so much effort into producing nuts and not new buds. By next year blooming will not be a problem.

A sick tree is also unlikely to bloom. Blossom death is usually caused by diseases like blossom blight and fire blight. These diseases cause the flowers to form but later on will wilt and die. Application of wettable sulphur or cutting off affected areas can help control and treat the disease.

Lack of water can prevent Almonds from blooming. Almond trees require a generous amount of water to flourish, so a lack of water will prevent blooming. These trees will invest their energy in locating water rather than blooming. 2

Do Almond Trees Lose Their Leaves?

Almond trees lose their leaves in the spring and fall. This usually happens before the cold, so the trees are dormant during the cold period which is usually May to July in Australia.

Do Almond Trees Cause Drought?

No, despite being a water-intensive crop Almonds do not cause drought. California has been having a very dry 21st century and many citizens are giving the stink eye to Almond tree farmers. Almond trees take up 10% of California’s water only, that isn’t as much as it takes to grow alfalfa.

Almond farmers have also cut down their water consumption by a third, and they have promised to cut down more by 2025.

Do Almond Trees Grow In Michigan?

There isn’t any record of good Almond trees growing in Michigan. Instead nuts like Shagbark hickory, black walnuts, English walnuts, chestnuts, hazelnuts, butternuts, heartnuts, pecans , hickory nuts and more grow in Michigan.

Do Almond Trees Grow In Florida?

No, almond trees do not grow in Florida. Almond trees do not grow in Florida due it it’s climate; the tree thrives in a warm, dry summers whilst Florida has hot, humid summers.

Although, some argue that Almond trees can thrive in Florida’s climate, most farmers are discouraged due to the intensive care it requires. It requires a huge amount of water to maintain, if the tree experiences frost while flowering there will be no buds. Not to mention bees are also needed to ensure pollination.

The nut trees that grow well in Florida are macadamia, chestnut, and, pecan. Along with nut trees these are fruits that thrive really well in Florida;

  • Figs
  • Avocado
  • Jackfruit
  • Citrus
  • Apples
  • Guava
  • Bananas
  • Tamarind
  • Loquats
  • Papaya
  • Mangoes
  • Peaches
  • Lychee
  • Mulberries
  • Japanese Persimmons

Do Almond Trees Grow In Texas?

Although, the weather is not suitable for Almost trees because they bloom during winter so they cannot produce fruits, one can still grow Almond trees.

Mission and Hall’s hardy are two varieties of Almond trees that bloom after winter. You can grow these varieties in a container at first, during fall you can move them indoors, where they will be safe till after final spring frost. Here’s how to grow the Mission or Hall’s hardy variety.

  • Buy a healthy tree of either varieties
  • Measuring from ground level, cut the main central limb to make it about 2 feet tall. Ensure the cut is parallel to the ground.
  • Find a sunny area and build a 6–12 inches high mound. (Texas A&M University recommends that you prepare your planting area in winter and then plant almond trees in mid to late February)
  • In the center of your mound dig a planting hole twice the size of the almond tree’s root.
  • Take soil and mix it with about 25 percent organic compost or other organic materials such like composted animal manure.
  • Fill half of the hole about with the mixed soil.
  • Set your almond tree in the hole and distribute the root evenly in the base.
  • Water it for 30 to 60 minutes with a sprinkler. 3

Do Almond Trees Grow In Pennsylvania?

No, Almond trees do not grow in Pennsylvania due to its climate. Nuts like pecans, macadamia also do not grow in Pennsylvania.

A hand full of farmers have reported planting the hall’s hardy variety of almond tree and it blossomed. However, there is so much work in harvesting and processing them that only the strong willed grow that variety. This variety has extremely hard shells, which are difficult to crack. They are also bitter plus they need boiling to remove the Prussic Acid (cyanide). All these must be done before they become edible.

Citations Used In This Article

  1. Pruning Almond Trees: How And When To Prune An Almond Tree (gardeningknowhow).
  2. No Flowers On Almond Trees: Reasons For An Almond Tree Not Flowering (gardeningknowhow).
  3. Growing Almond Trees in Texas (gardenguides).