Nuts On Show

Exhibiting the Excellence of the Bathurst Experiment Farm

The orchard at the Bathurst Experiment Farm was well-known for its fruit research especially on apple varieties. Research into the possibility of producing nuts commercially is less well-known. The plan of the Farm’s orchard includes walnuts and filberts and these displays of nuts grown at the Farm demonstrate that almonds and macadamia nuts were also grown. Pecan nuts must also be added as they were also trialled at the Farm in the 1930s.

The four cases shown here can be broken up into two types. The outer two cases show the varieties of hazelnuts (true nuts) and walnuts (drupes) grown at the Farm and differences in size and shape across the varieties. The two central cases are displays prepared for a show exhibit. The macadamias (Queen of Nuts) and almonds (drupes) display a uniformity of size, shape and colour and have been packed in a professional manner.

The displays were prepared for inclusion in the State Farms’ exhibits at the Sydney Royal Easter Show and at regional agricultural shows. Government experts employed by the New South Wales Department of Agriculture chose the best examples from each area of output from the various Experiment Farms for display. For example, William J. Allen as the State Fruit Expert organised the Fruit exhibit for the 1924 Royal Easter Show. These show exhibits had a role beyond showcasing the Farm’s output. They were also used to educate the public on the State’s potential and provide information on the training available at the State Farm schools.

To have example of the nuts grown at the Bathurst Experiment Farm chosen as part of a State Farm exhibit was a testament to the work of the orchardists. These display cases are a lasting reminder of their work and of this recognition.