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Black Walnut Trees

Discussion in 'Nursery' started by rrausch, Jan 14, 2011.

  1. rrausch

    rrausch ArboristSite Lurker

    Jan 9, 2011
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    I got the urge to plant some Black Walnut trees on my place, and so a few years ago I picked up a bucket full of the biggest nuts I could find from a buddy's farm, from under one nice, tall, straight tree.

    I dug some holes, dumped some manure in the hole, sprinkled some dirt on top of the manure and dropped in a Walnut. I must have planted about 80 of those nuts. About 15 of them came up, and of those my brother bush-hogged down 10 of them. (I don't get no respect!) So the good news is that I do have 5 nice Black Walnut trees. I want to plant some more this coming fall, but how deep should I plant the nuts? I planted the first batch maybe too deep--about 6-8 inches deep. Now this is in the Mo. Ozarks, where Black Walnut is almost a weed.
  2. Marine5068

    Marine5068 Addicted to ArboristSite

    Nov 20, 2009
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    Madoc, Ontario, Canada
    Try checking on the net for any sites on the topic.
    I know a friend of a friend that actually belongs to a "black walnut" tree club here in Ontario.
    If I were you, I'd be glad that you're in a spot that has so many of the tress. Here in Ontario you'd be hard pressed to find a single tree. They were cut so much that they're almost extinct here. Very sought after tree.
    Also squirrels may have found them and dug up the nuts before they could propagate. I know they LOVE them and will smell them out.
    The friend's friend had to cage his walnuts in underground after planting them to get them started and for a few for a few years later he said.
    Good Luck

  3. Ash_403

    Ash_403 Shop smart. Shop S-Mart.

    Nov 5, 2010
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    S central Indiana
    I hope this helps you a little.

    I moved two new black walnut seedlings last Spring. Squirrels had "planted" them. When I moved them, they still had the split, two outer shells clumped around the sprout/root area. Both were around 3" to 4" deep in the soil.
    Also, to avoid the squirrels digging them back up for food (even though they were now small trees), I fenced them with close mesh steel fencing. I'll leave if for a few years too. Squirrels can get a little thick in my neighborhood, so I thin them out when I can. So take Marine5068's word for it. If they will go after a spouting tree around 1 foot tall, they will definately go after the burried nuts.

  4. PJM

    PJM ArboristSite Operative

    Sep 22, 2010
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    The depth you sowed at is probably correct to get the required stratification (approximately 100 days) accomplished. The problem may have been that many of the nuts just didn't have sound seed. To test for soundness before sowing, completely remove the husk (outer covering) and use the bucket floatation method. Sound seeds will sink and unsound (unfilled) seeds will float.

    Seeds should be sown in the fall shortly after collecting and after removing the husk. Cover each with mulch (sawdust, hay or straw) and a screen to keep rodents away.
  5. David (saltas)

    David (saltas) Addicted to ArboristSite

    Sep 26, 2010
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    seed diameter

    seeds have enough starch in them to grow some roots and put out a shoot.

    bury them too deep and they will run out of starch before the shoot gets to the surface.

    my own practice is when I have no info from some who is more experienced with a particular species is to plant a seed at a depth of between one to two times the diameter of the seed.
  6. Labman

    Labman ArboristSite Guru

    Jun 26, 2006
    Likes Received:
    Nothern US
    In my garden they are one more weed. I think the ones that sprout are very shallow. If you intend to move them, do so quickly after they sprout. Otherwise, their root heads for china.

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