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Home-Grown Peanuts

Updated: Feb 23, 2022

By Billa

We (husband Martin and I) have a thing for peanuts. We don’t only love peanuts, we also like anything that contains peanuts - peanut butter, peanut butter cookies, peanut sauce, peanut soup, peanut ice cream, etc. So, when we spotted a peanut plant at the local nursery, we couldn’t resist.

We planted it on our deck - to protect it from squirrels and deer. We waited all summer for the leaves to turn yellow - a sign that the peanuts are ready to harvest. Finally, in September, they were the prerequisite color. We dug them up and hung the plant upside down in the warmest room in the basement to dry.

The harvested plant

After 2 more weeks of waiting, we picked the peanuts off the plant and left them in a colander for another 2 weeks to dry some more (The instructions warn that peanuts should not be eaten until well-dried.)

In all, it took 90 days and $5.99 to get a grand total of 24 peanuts.

How did they taste? Like peanuts.

Was it worth it? Maybe, just for the experience.

Will we do it again? Probably not.

Here are some facts I found interesting about peanuts:

  • Peanuts are not nuts, but legumes.

  • Unlike other legumes, such as beans or peas, they grow underground.

  • Peanuts originated in South America; pod remains as old as 7,600 years were found in Peru.

  • China produces the most peanuts (38%), followed by India (14%).

  • The US is the leading exporter of peanut butter.

  • Americans eat an average of 6 pounds of peanuts a year.

  • Peanut milk and peanut paste are used to reduce malnutrition in developing countries.

  • Peanut oil is used in cosmetics, furniture polish, insecticides, and soap.

  • If peanuts are not properly dried, they may develop aflatoxins, which are highly carcinogenic.


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