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(Hazel family)


The family of trees and shrubs comprises just one genus of 15 species that are found in northern temperate regions. Brunner & Fairbrothers (1979) demonstrated a close relationship between the families Corylaceae, Carpinaceae, and Betulaceae on the basis of antigenic proteins in the pollens.

The edible and nutritious hazel nuts are obtained from Corylus avellana L.; filbert nuts are obtained from Corylus maxima Mill.

The wood, nuts, and bristles of Corylus L. species may cause dermatitis under certain circumstances.

Corylus avellana L.

Freshly cut hazel yields tannins that can produce painful fissures of the hands of woodworkers (Schwartz et al. 1957).

Positive scratch tests to hazel nut were observed in two food handlers who had dermatitis (Hjorth & Roed-Petersen 1976).

Corylus sieboldiana Blume
Japanese Hazel

The bristles are very irritating and easily cause inflammation of the skin which can be counteracted by the leaves (von Reis Altschul 1973).

Corylus tibetica Batalin
Tibetan Hazel

The husks enclosing the nuts are covered in branching spines, a feature not found in other hazels.


  • [Yet to be added. Details available on request]

Richard J. Schmidt

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