Black Walnut

Discussion in 'Native Habitat Management' started by weekender21, Jun 23, 2017.

  1. weekender21

    weekender21 Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    Anyone planting or managing black walnut stands on your land? I know they can be toxic to apples and some other trees but the timber value is better than most. Just wondering if it's better to stay away from it or not.
     
  2. dogghr

    dogghr Well-Known Member

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    Never know about timber values, walnut is down for few years at present yet pulp wood is booming, which used to be trash. Hard to beat just planting oaks for the money. I've got plenty of walnut, but you might want to watch. There is disease killing them. i've got at least 15 around my fields that are slowly dying. They sprout so easily, I would think just placing nuts in ground in fall would give you good results. I used to have to collect them and dehusk and crack them for sale when I was a kid so personally I detest them. LOL.
     
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  3. Foragefarmer

    Foragefarmer Active Member

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    Thousand cankers disease has been confirmed in North Carolina so planting of black walnut is not recommended. Trees can be salvage logged as they die. But the current thinking is all the black walnuts may be dead in 30 years. Trees generally die within three years of noticeable infection.

    I am bummed about this I have some nice volunteer black walnuts coming along on my place; they have been selected for during TSI work, and they may never reach the size to be worth anything.
     
  4. weekender21

    weekender21 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the info, the farm I'm hoping to purchase is in NC so I guess planting Walnut sounds like a bad idea.
     
  5. j-bird

    j-bird Well-Known Member

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    Black walnut brought me a decent pay day a few years ago. I don't plant them, but I don't detest them either. I agree that oaks are far better for a combined wildlife/timber value. Just as an FYI - my neighbor is in the timber biz and he bought the farm next to me and planted the entire thing in OAK!
     
  6. weekender21

    weekender21 Well-Known Member

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    That's good to know. Does it matter what type of oak? Northern Red, eastern white? I'm guessing for oak to reach saw timber value is at least 40+ years right? The place I'm buying is currently being select cut for yellow poplar and ash saw timer. The yellow poplar is pretty good for a timber investment but not great for wildlife. I might look into oak as a potential for long term investment.
     
  7. j-bird

    j-bird Well-Known Member

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    I would suggest planting what is most suitable for your particular site. My neighbor mostly planted bur oak, but the site was upland, coarse soil and well drained.....which bur oak likes. Based on what I have seen of their trees growing I doubt they are cutting them in 40 years. I think they will be cut by the next generation of family at their mill. I think under ideal situation and intense management you could get an oak to marketable size in 40 years, but it's not going to be easy. I was told that a marketable tree needs to be roughly 6 feet in circumference as a general rule to be considered. Now consider that one of the traits that make oak so desirable is it's strength.....which comes from growing slow. Fast growing oaks like pin oak tend to not bring true "oak" prices....if that makes sense, at least in my area. Fast growing trees tend to lack general strength and as such are not as valuable and when harvested tend be be made into crates and pallets and the like that folks are not going to pay top $ for.

    Also consider that the market changes both on price and what is desired. 20 years ago sugar/hard maple was a "weed" - now in my area it actually brings a nice price if you can hit the harvest "sweet spot" they are looking for. The white of the wood is in style in furniture and cabinets at the moment, but that may fade over time as well. I also know sometimes a particular timber can be difficult to locate in a certain area and thus can drive prices higher if you have some of that. My son worked at a sawmill in NW Ohio and they had a real hard time finding tulip poplar.....yet back home here in IN we had a fair amount of it. Oak, walnut and cherry will tend to be better bets....but again regionally and your site will control that. I struggle to get a marketable cherry tree. For some reason just about the time mine get to that size they tend to rot, yet my creek bottoms are full of walnut. My upland soils mostly support chinkapin, burr and some norther red oaks - again based on site and soil conditions.
     
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  8. weekender21

    weekender21 Well-Known Member

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    Great insight j-bird, thanks. I hear you on the market changes. With a commodity like timber it really is hard to predict what will be in demand in 40-60 years. Really a guessing game so choosing timber with wildlife value certainly seems practical.
     
  9. Redonthehead

    Redonthehead Member

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    If anyone is serious about planting black walnut I suggest checking the "Black Walnut Suitability" overlay on the Web Soil Survey to see if walnuts have a good chance on your site.

    I wish one of my neighbors would plant their whole place to oak!!
     
  10. weekender21

    weekender21 Well-Known Member

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    Agree, the web soil survey site is awesome! I do question the accuracy. Not that I don't thinks it's accurate, just impressed with how much information is available for every square inch of a particular property.


    Sent from my iPhone using Deer Hunter Forum
     
  11. j-bird

    j-bird Well-Known Member

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    It's sounds ideal, but I am actually worried about it because once those trees produce mast and my low deer numbers that food source will last a long time and then I have to compete with that to pull deer to my property. Food isn't a limiting factor in my area (cover is) so it's not going to produce more deer either. Yes deer eat more than acorns, but if they can eat all the acorns they want - I look for it to grossly impact my place. Right now the deer are on the neighbors because it's thick and they come to my beans fields and plots to feed. Once those oaks start to mature the cover is lost and the food source increases even more, but not where I can use it to my advantage! This same neighbor has a mature oak flat now of a few acres and it's got lots of acorns but no cover - deer are only there at night to feed. Imagine what 100 or more acres of that will do!:(
     
  12. Hoosierhunting

    Hoosierhunting Active Member

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    Here's some good info if you're serious about Black Walnut plantings: https://www.extension.purdue.edu/extmedia/FNR/FNR-119.html
    Purdue used to have a patented Black Walnut tree - the patent expired but the IDNR's Select Black Walnut comes from this seedstock. I would not just plant walnuts willy-nilly. You want select trees that will give you good form and potential for veneer sales.
     
  13. TheOldOak

    TheOldOak Member

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    Couple of comments. I hope you guys are young! For a white oak to get to a really nice size, say 30-36 inches across the stump, it will take at least 80 years. Walnuts will probably grow a bit faster, especially in bottom ground that drains okay. My advice, be the woods. Ie., create diversity so that whatever insects/diseases invade and kill one group of trees over the next 40 years, they don't wipe you out. Mother nature seems to know best, most woodlots are extremely diverse, although there may be clusters of one tree type in small areas. We can learn a lot just by paying attention to how nature works on its own. I've also heard people who plant trees knowing they will never live to profit from them are generally optimists! I agree with that. On the other hand, I will live to see the wildlife benefit from them and that is good enough for me.
     
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  14. John McCanister

    John McCanister New Member

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    I'm livin in upstate NY and right now i have a few trees 24" dbh, and many others 14"-16". A good friend o mine is having about 100 big trees cut and he's been offered a thousand dollars for each of em. I've been readin everything I could find about walnut trees for the past 18 years. If you're interested in learnin more about how big they get in terms of tree size and so on, take a look at Cornell University extension program's website. They really have some good articles there. Also this website about walnut trees have a comprehensive guide on how to grow em. If you are more interested in a productive variety rather than timber value, I'd recommend Chandler walnut tree. Feel free to ask me anything you wanna know and I can answer.
     
  15. catscratch

    catscratch Well-Known Member

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    I was interested in planting Walnut several years ago and talked briefly with a forester. He said most internet readings are exaggerated on how quickly they can be harvested and that if I wanted to plant them it would be for my grandchildren's benefit at best. He said if I wanted to make money from trees to plant Pecan and sell the nuts. Of course this is a guy who know's my local pretty well and has seen what works. Professionals at your location might tell you something different. Some of the posts above offer great information! I don't think I've ever seen deer use a Walnut tree for anything...
     
  16. buckdeer1

    buckdeer1 Well-Known Member

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    10 or so years ago I harvested 75 walnut trees,I received 1/2 of the sell which was 10K at the time.I decided to go this route as we shared the risk this way. I had one veneer tree that was worth around 2K alone.Trees especially walnut can be alot like a crop that gets left too long in the field,looks OK but isn't as good as if it was harvested on time.You can cut a beautiful tree and it has a rot spot that goes 20 ft up the center making it almost worthless if they will buy it.I our area the tree that has been harvested the most over last 50 years is the cotton wood
     
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