How Much Water Does It Take to Grow an Almond?

Almonds are native to China and India. They are nutritious nuts high in protein and fat and are considered a superfood. In California alone, almonds account for nearly $1 Billion in annual sales.

You've heard of watermelons or pumpkins. But did you know almonds take twice as much water to grow as they do fruit? If you want to grow an almond tree at home, you'll need to apply some knowledge about soil composition and how a plant grows.

About 1.1 gallons of water is required for one almond to grow, and about 1,900 gallons for one pound to grow. So almonds are in high demand right now, even if it is the same amount of water as walnuts, hazelnuts, pistachios, and cashews. Dive in to find out more.

How much water does it take to grow an almond? 

How much water does it take to grow an almond waterev

It takes one gallon of water to grow one almond, but the drought affects residents and businesses throughout California. An announcement made last week by Governor Brown about conservation measures has received significant attention.

Almonds make up a small percentage of the State's irrigated farmland and use only a small amount of water. There is a lot of focus on almonds, but other crops are also grown in the State.

Almonds take 1\ 1.1 gallons of water to grow each almond, while other crops, like peas, lentils, and beef, take significantly less water to produce the same amount of protein. As a result, farmers share in the California drought's pain. So how much water is needed to produce a pound of almonds?

It takes a lot of water to produce almonds. Almonds are a dry fruit, meaning they don't have a lot of water in them. It takes around 1,000 liters of water to produce a pound of almonds. That's over 2,500 gallons.

But don't worry--almonds are a healthy snack choice that can help you stay hydrated. A single almond contains about 2% of your daily recommended water intake. So if you eat 10 almonds, that's about 20% of your daily recommended intake.

Do almonds require more water compared to other fruit?

Do almonds require more water compared to other fruit

The myth that almonds are the most water-intensive crop in California is based on a misleading comparison of the overall agriculture sector. Almond production requires substantially less water per acre than many other crops grown in California.

In fact, almonds require roughly half the water needed to grow apples, bananas, avocados, broccoli, cauliflower, cherries, dates, grapes, lettuce, onions, oranges, peaches, pears, plums, potatoes, spinach, strawberries, tomatoes, turnips, wheat, and zucchini.

In addition, almond trees typically do not receive supplemental irrigation during dry periods. Watering almonds are generally done to maintain consistent moisture levels within the soil surrounding the roots rather than to increase yield.

When comparing agricultural water consumption to the nutritional value of foods, however, there is no single metric that captures both.

One way to look at it is to compare pounds of food required to produce one pound of meat, milk, or eggs versus pounds required to make one pound of almonds. 

On average, almonds contain 60% more protein per ounce than eggs and nearly twice the fat. They also provide a significant portion of dietary fiber.

Sing of overwatering almond:

It's impossible to overwater almonds since they need so much water. However, you can tell if your tree is overwatered if the soil surrounding it is constantly wet or swampy. Your almond tree's health will begin to deteriorate after being exposed to waterlogged soil for a long time.

Wet soil and swampy conditions indicate overwatering of your almond tree. The leaves of an almond tree that are yellowing or light-colored show signs of overwatering. An overwatered almond tree easily breaks off leaves and stems.

Overwatering will result in a lighter, yellowish foliage color on your almond tree. Besides being fragile, the foliage can easily break off if it's overwatered. You can avoid overwatering your almond tree by keeping an eye on its roots and leaves.

What Are the Signs That an Almond Tree Needs Water?

Once the soil is dry and nearing cracking, it's time to water your almond tree. You might notice that the soil is actively cracking if you've waited too long, and you may also see that the plant is wilting or browning.

A common sign of underwatering is these symptoms. Your almond tree's base should be watered when the soil is dry and cracked. Water your almond tree immediately if it shows signs of underwatering (browning leaves, wilting).

Underwatering can kill almonds very quickly. Underwatering almond trees is extremely dangerous to almond crops, so you'll want to avoid it at all costs. The death of your tree can occur even after a relatively short period of under-watering.

Despite their unforgiving nature, almonds are very resilient. Keep the tree healthy by monitoring it closely if you want to grow this nut.

Can almonds only be grown in California?

California's last major drought from 2012-2015 and the recent news that the State has re-entered into drought conditions just this year alone have led many people to label almonds a poor fit for the region.

However, many other trees and vine crops, such as almonds, are predisposed to perform well in a "Mediterranean" climate like the Californian one.

Fairly scarce around the world. There are, however, typically only coastal climates of this type on western continents between 30 and 50 degrees latitude. Best described by long, warm, dry summers and wet winter periods where the air temperature gets much colder but doesn't drop below freezing, five major regions in the world combine these characteristics: The Mediterranean Basin, Chile, Southwest Australia, South Africa, and California.

Crucially, these are exactly conditions that almond trees require to go through the annual cycle of dormancy, leaf out, and budding, each of those being critical for a healthy fruit set and, therefore, for economically productive yields.

In addition, California has the best water resources and infrastructure among the major "Mediterranean Climate" regions. In fact, it's one of the few places in the world where you can grow almonds without irrigation. Also you may want to read is cold water bad for plants? Simply click here

How Much Water Does It Take to Grow an Almond FAQs:

1. California's water shortages: what are they?

The Californian State faces several man-made problems, including water shortages, insufficient groundwater recharge, contaminated drinking water, and subsidence.

2. Almond milk: Is it safe?

Is Almond milk too good to be true? Think twice before you pour it on your cereal.

3. How do almonds benefit your health?

A study found that almonds lower risks of heart disease and Alzheimer's disease, among other conditions, by supplying vitamins, minerals, and beneficial plant chemicals.

4. Do almond trees live a long time?

Yes, they live 25-30 years.

5. Almond trees are irrigated in what way?

The use of drip irrigation and micro jet irrigation is common in large commercial almond orchards in the United States. By using these systems, farmers can measure soil moisture daily and apply fertilizers through the irrigation system following the exact soil moisture.


An almond tree is a living thing that needs to be taken care of properly; otherwise, it will die very quickly. And in order to maintain the life cycle of an almond tree, we need to pay attention to its growth and development stages. Therefore, I hope this article has given you enough information about the almond tree.