Black Walnut Propogation from seed

Discussion in 'Plant Propagation' started by plantluver, Jan 2, 2006.

  1. plantluver

    plantluver Member

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    What is the best way to grow Black Walnut from the seeds collected that have fallen from the trees? If anyone has any advice it would be greatly appreciated. I have not logged on since Sept. due to illness and surgery but I am slowly recovering and looking forward to sharing info on the forum once again.
    Best Regards
    plantluver
     
  2. growest

    growest Active Member 10 Years

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    Hi--best wishes for better health this year!

    On the walnuts, the taproots of these things are infamous, and have to be considered. The seeds will sprout this spring if they are sown now and allowed to experience the cold of winter. If you simply want a tree somewhere, it would be great to sow a few seeds in the desired area and simply protect them from varmints, thinning to one seedling next summer. This way, the natural taproot will form and the plant will be drought and wind resistant like nothing you would be able to buy and/or plant from a container.

    Normally, growing for resale, or transplanting later, the seeds have to be air root pruned. A typical way is to sow into 1 litre cardboard milk cartons, bottoms removed, which are arranged on top of hardware cloth/wire mesh small enough to hold the soil mix from falling out. Make sure the mesh is elevated above the bench/ground, so that air moves underneath the containers. This way, when the tap root moves down to the bottom of the container, it pokes into the air and dies back at its tip, resulting in many side branches which is what you want. You could probably use the largest styrofoam coffee cups, bottoms cut off, as an alternative to the milk cartons.

    Transplant into progressively larger nursery containers, trying not to allow them to get rootbound...circling roots can produce a plant doomed to struggle and even die eventually.

    Tree seedling production has come a long way in recent years, the pros have a strict protocol to produce superior seedlings...compared to the traditional field beds sown with seeds and uprooted the following winter that produced inferior "liners" for growing on. Getting that tap root to branch out is a big part of the equation, and has to be done very early on to produce a quality tree.
     
  3. plantluver

    plantluver Member

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    Thanks growest for your advice and good wishes. I hope to try your method with success. If yes I will let you know.
    Best regards,
    plantluver
     
  4. treelover3

    treelover3 Active Member

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    One more thing... the seeds (nuts) cannot be allowed to dry out or the seed (nut) will die. You need to sow the seeds ASAP if you expect germination in the spring. Many nut-tree seeds remain viable for a very short time after the nuts have fallen from the tree. Some of these nuts include, but are not limited to, Black Walnut, Butternut, Oak, Hickory, Chestnut, Buckeye, etc.

    If you didn't plant the nuts right away, you will need to wait until next fall to collect fresh seed and then sow them right away.
    Good luck,
    Mike
     

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