Black Walnut

=Habitat and Range.=--Rich woods.

Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont,--not reported native;

Massachusetts,--rare east of the Connecticut river, occasional along the

western part of the Connecticut valley to the New York line; Rhode

Island,--doubtfully native, Apponaug (Kent county) and elsewhere;

Connecticut,--frequent westward, Darien (Fairfield county); Plainville

(Hartford county, J. N. Bishop in lit.,
896); in the central and

eastern sections probably introduced.

South to Florida; west to Minnesota, Kansas, Arkansas, and Texas.

=Habit.=--A large tree, 50-75 feet high, with a diameter above the swell

of the roots of 2-5 feet; attaining in the Ohio valley a height of 150

feet and a diameter of 6-8 feet; trunk straight, slowly tapering,

throwing out its lower branches nearly horizontally, the upper at a

broad angle, forming an open, spacious, noble head.

=Bark.=--Bark of trunk in old trees thick, blackish, and deeply

furrowed; large branches rough and more or less furrowed; branchlets

smooth; season's twigs downy.

=Winter Buds and Leaves.=--Buds small, ovate or rounded, obtuse, more or

less pubescent, few-scaled. Leaves pinnately compound, alternate; rachis

smooth and swollen at base, but less so than that of the butternut;

stipules none; leaflets 13-21 (the odd leaflet at the apex often

wanting), opposite or alternate, 2-5 inches long, about half as wide;

dark green and smooth above, lighter and slightly glandular-pubescent

beneath, turning yellow in autumn; outline ovate-lanceolate; apex

taper-pointed; base oblique, usually rounded or heart-shaped; stemless

or nearly so, except the terminal leaflet; stipels none. Aromatic when


=Inflorescence.=--May. Appearing while the leaves are unfolding, sterile

and fertile flowers on the same tree,--the sterile along the sides or at

the ends of the preceding year's branches, in single, unbranched,

green, stout, cylindrical, pendulous catkins, 3-6 inches long; perianth

of 6 rounded lobes, stamens numerous, filaments very short, anthers

purple: fertile flowers in the axils of the season's shoots, sessile,

solitary or several on a common peduncle; calyx 4-toothed, with 4 small

petals at the sinuses; stigmas 2, reddish-green.

=Fruit.=--Ripening in October at the ends of the branchlets, single, or

two or more together; round, smooth, or somewhat roughish with uneven

surface, not viscid, dull green turning to brown: husk not separating

into sections: shell irregularly furrowed: kernel edible.

=Horticultural Value.=--Hardy in central and southern New England; grows

well in most situations, but in a deep rich soil it forms a large and

handsome tree. Readily obtainable in western nurseries; transplants

rather poorly, and collected plants are of little value. Its leaves

appear late and drop early, and the fruit is often abundant. These

disadvantages make it objectionable in many cases. Grown from seed.

1. Winter buds.

2. Flowering branch.

3. Sterile flower, front view.

4. Sterile flower, back view.

5. Fertile flower.

6. Fruiting branch.

=Carya alba, Nutt.=

Hicoria ovata, Britton.


=Habitat and Range.=--In various soils and situations, fertile slopes,

brooksides, rocky hills.

Valley of the St. Lawrence.

Maine,--along or near the coast as far north as Harpswell (Cumberland

county); New Hampshire,--common as far north as Lake Winnepesaukee;

Vermont,--occasional along the Connecticut to Windsor, rather common in

the Champlain valley and along the western slopes of the Green

mountains; Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut,--common.

South to Delaware and along the mountains to Florida; west to

Minnesota, Kansas, Indian territory, and Texas.

=Habit.=--The tallest of the hickories and proportionally the most

slender, from 50 to 75 feet in height, and not more than 2 feet in trunk

diameter; rising to a great height in the Ohio and Indiana river

bottoms. The trunk, shaggy in old trees, rises with nearly uniform

diameter to the point of furcation, throwing out rather small branches

of unequal length and irregularly disposed, forming an oblong or rounded

head with frequent gaps in the continuity of the foliage.

=Bark.=--Trunk in young trees and in the smaller branches ash-gray,

smoothish to seamy; in old trees, extremely characteristic, usually

shaggy, the outer layers separating into long, narrow, unequal plates,

free at one or both ends, easily detachable; branchlets smooth and gray,

with conspicuous leaf-scars; season's shoots stout, more or less downy,


=Winter Buds and Leaves.=--Buds tomentose, ovate to oblong, terminal

buds large, much swollen before expanding; inner scales numerous,

purplish-fringed, downy, enlarging to 5-6 inches in length as the leaves

unfold. Leaves pinnately compound, alternate, 12-20 inches long; petiole

short, rough, and somewhat swollen at base; stipules none; leaflets

usually 5, sometimes 3 or 7, 3-7 inches long, dark green above,

yellowish-green and downy beneath when young, the three upper large,

obovate to lanceolate, the two lower much smaller, oblong to

oblong-lanceolate, all finely serrate and sharp-pointed; base obtuse,

rounded or acute, mostly inequilateral; nearly sessile save the odd

leaflet; stipels none.

=Inflorescence.=--May. Sterile and fertile flowers on the same tree,

appearing when the leaves are fully grown,--sterile at the base of the

season's shoots, in slender, green, pendulous catkins, 4-6 inches long,

usually in threes, branching umbel-like from a common peduncle;

flower-scales 3-parted, the middle lobe much longer than the other two,

linear, tipped with long bristles; calyx adnate to scale; stamens

mostly in fours, anthers yellow, bearded at the tip: fertile flowers

single or clustered on peduncles at the ends of the season's shoots;

calyx 4-toothed, hairy, adherent to ovary; corolla none; stigmas 2,

large, fringed.

=Fruit.=--October. Spherical, 3-6 inches in circumference: husks rather

thin, firm, green turning to brown, separating completely into 4

sections: nut variable in size, subglobose, white, usually 4-angled:

kernel large, sweet, edible.

=Horticultural Value.=--Hardy throughout New England; prefers light,

well-drained, loamy soil; when well established makes a moderately rapid

growth; difficult to transplant, rarely offered in nurseries; collected

plants seldom survive; a fine tree for landscape gardening, but its nuts

are apt to make trouble in public grounds. Propagated from a seed. A

thin-shelled variety is in cultivation.

1. Winter buds.

2. Flowering branch.

3. Sterile flower, front view.

4. Sterile flower, back view.

5. Fertile flower.

6. Fruiting branch.

=Carya tomentosa, Nutt.=

Hicoria alba, Britton.