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Old 2022-03-11, 13:46   #35
Dr Sardonicus
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Feb 2017

43·139 Posts

Originally Posted by rogue View Post
I would like to plant a black walnut, but my wife is strongly against that because they drop a lot of sap. Fortunately there are many places to pick up black walnuts in fall.
Black walnut trees (Juglans nigra) also drop a lot of black walnuts some years; it seems about every other year. They can practically carpet the ground.

For those not familiar, black walnuts have a very thick green outer hull that makes them about the size of tennis balls, and heavy enough that you do NOT want to park underneath a black walnut tree when the nuts are dropping, because the impact on a car windshield can require its replacement. You also probably don't want to hit fallen black walnuts with a power mower. Stepping on a black walnut can lead to a sprained ankle, which I learned the hard way.

The nuts are edible. Running them over with a car will loosen the outer hulls, exposing the inner hull, which is a little smaller than the familiar English walnut, and - guess what - black. The black dye in black walnuts will stain your skin, and will not wash away. Cracking them without breaking the meats into small pieces is an art.

Black walnut meats do not taste like English walnuts. They have an strong aromatic flavor which I would describe as "banana-like." The most delicious oatmeal cookies I ever ate had pieces of black walnut in them.

Black walnut trees also wage chemical warfare on some kinds of plants. The plant exudes a substance called juglone, which is death to tomato plants, generally not good for plants in the Nightshade family, and also said to kill apple trees.
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