Prunus dulcis, Prunus amygdalus
|Almond tree with ripening fruit. Majorca, Spain|
|Subgenus:||Prunus subg. Amygdalus|
The almond (Prunus dulcis, syn. Prunus amygdalus) is a species of tree native to Iran and surrounding countries but widely cultivated elsewhere. The almond is also the name of the edible and widely cultivated seed of this tree. Within the genus Prunus, it is classified with the peach in the subgenus Amygdalus, distinguished from the other subgenera by corrugations on the shell (endocarp) surrounding the seed.
The fruit of the almond is a drupe, consisting of an outer hull and a hard shell with the seed, which is not a true nut, inside. Shelling almonds refers to removing the shell to reveal the seed. Almonds are sold shelled or unshelled. Blanched almonds are shelled almonds that have been treated with hot water to soften the seedcoat, which is then removed to reveal the white embryo.
From Middle English almond, almaund, from Old French almande, amande, from Vulgar Latin *amendla, *amandula, from Latin amygdala, from Ancient Greek ἀμυγδάλη (amugdálē), of uncertain origin. Influenced by amandus and by many French and Spanish words of Arabic origin that began with the Arabic definite article al-.
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈɑː(l).mənd/, /ˈɔː(l).mənd/
- (General American) IPA(key): /ˈɑ(l).mənd/