Nut Illustrations of the Public Domain

We have plenty of strange art on TofuJoe, but today’s images are a different kind of nuts. Here are some of the best nut illustrations in the Public Domain.


Cashews certainly grow in a strange and beautiful way. This cashew illustration shows both cashew nuts and cashew apples. Some of the cashews have been illustrated hanging off of the fruits and some are not. This isn’t an error by the illustrator either. Cashew nuts develops before the fruit! The teeny-tiny pear-shaped green shapes on the cashews are actually the developing fruit. The fruit is edible, and is described as citrus, mango, cucumber and bell pepper, although it is also quite astringent. Additionally, the fruit bruises easily and has a limited shelf-life, which is why most people are much more familiar with the cashew nut.

an image of cashew anacardium occidentale 1780 nut illustrations


Pecans, pecans, pecans! There may not be anything as American as apple pie, but pecan pie must be a close second. Pecans are native to northern Mexico and the southern United States and are actually a species of hickory. In fact, this watercolor from the US Pomological collection is labelled as a “Frotscher hickory”. With the pecan’s sweet buttery flavor it isn’t a surprise that many U.S. states have chosen the nut as a state symbol. Alabama, Arkansas and California all chose the pecan as their state nut. California actually claims 4 nuts: almond, pistachio, walnut and pecan. Texas choose pecan pie as their state pie, and the pecan nut as their ‘health nut’, which is an oddly specific category.

an image of frotscher pecan carya illinoinensis 1904 nut illustrations

Nutmeg and Mace

Nutmeg and mace come from the same plant. Myristica fragrans is native to Indonesia, but also grows in China, Taiwan, Malaysia, India, Sri Lanka and South America. Nutmeg is made by grinding the seeds of Myristica fragrans into a powder. It is known for its strong fragrance and warm, nutty, slightly sweet taste, and is used to flavor many baked goods, sausages, puddings, and beverages like eggnog. Mace is made by grinding the red seed covering (aril), and is described as having a flavor similar to nutmeg but more delicate.

an image of nutmeg myristica fragrans 1900 nut illustrations

Pine nuts

Pine nuts are the edible seeds from pine trees. There are twenty-nine species of pine trees, and all of them have edible nuts. The nuts vary in size however, and only twenty of the species are commercially harvested. The Chilgoza pine below is native to the northwestern Himalayas.

an image of chilgoza pine cone 1840 nut illustrations
Chilgoza Pine cone (1840)

Hope you enjoyed learning about these nuts… although we have to admit that all four: cashews, pecans, nutmeg and pine nuts are botanically classified as seeds!! 🤣 🤣 🤣 🤣

Now that’s nuts! Err… seeds!

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