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Black Walnut

Black Walnut

Juglans species


Walnuts grow on very large trees, often reaching 18 meters tall. The divided leaves characterize all walnut spades. The walnut itself has a thick outer husk that must be removed to reach the hard inner shell of the nut.

Habitat and Distribution

The English walnut, in the wild state, is found from southeastern Europe across Asia to China and is abundant in the Himalayas. Several other species of walnut are found in China and Japan. The black walnut is common in the eastern United States.

Edible Parts

The nut kernel ripens in the autumn. You get the walnut meat by cracking the shell. Walnut meats are highly nutritious because of their protein and oil content.

Other Uses

You can boil walnuts and use the juice as an anti-fungal agent. The husks of "green" walnuts produce a dark brown dye for clothing or camouflage. Crush the husks of "green" black walnuts and sprinkle them into sluggish water or ponds for use as fish poison.

Steve's notes:

If you can find black walnuts, even if that means digging under the snow, you can usually find nuts that still have good meat in them. They last a long time. They are also very difficult to break open, and if the husk is still attached, your fingers will be stained for days (they have been used as a source of dye).


The Ultralight Backpacking Site | Black Walnut