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NUT TREES

illustration mixed nuts

We grow and sell seedling nut trees. These trees grow directly from the nut rather than being grafted onto a rootstock.  Like children, seedlings are each genetically different. They will not be an exact copy of either parent. The parents of our nut tree seedlings are selected for superior hardiness, nut quality and straight, timber-type growth. Traits like upright growth habit and hardiness have become relatively ``fixed'' over the generations and are present in almost all seedlings of these parents. (Those that do not measure up are eliminated.) Ease of cracking, size of nuts, and time of ripening will be more variable. Because of the genetic diversity inherent in seedlings, a small percentage will actually exceed the performance of both parents. Keep your eyes open for the "exceptional child!''
 
 



 

NUT TREES LISTED
 

  • American Chesnut
  • Black Walnut
  • Ashworth Bur Oak
  • Buartnut & Butternut not available
  • Red Oak
  • Hazelbert
  • Shagbark Hickory
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    SPECIAL PRICE NUT PACKAGES

    Nut Package #1
    $65
  • 4 Black Walnuts, mixed
  • 4 Hazelberts
  • Nut Package #2
    $115
  • 5 Black Walnuts, mixed
  • 5 Hazelberts
  • 2 Shagbark Hickory
  • 2 Ashworth Bur Oak

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    NUT-RELATED PRODUCTS

  • Hardshell Nut Cracker
  • Nut Wizard Pick Up Tool
  • CHOOSING A SITE FOR YOUR NUT TREES
    Young nut trees require extra care during and immediately after planting, such as a deeper hole for the taproot, a good deep mulch to hold moisture, and water every day while their root systems are getting established. Be sure that you can provide water to the trees during their first growing season. Each tree should receive 5 to 10 gallons of water per day until the end of May, and 2 to 3 times per week thereafter through mid-July. Nut trees grow very fast in rich soil, and seem to do well near river bottoms (but not in frost pockets). Soils with some clay that are not constant wet spots are good for most nut trees. They can tolerate wetter soils than fruit trees but will drown if their roots are sitting in water all year round. The notable exceptions to these guidelines are American chestnuts and Hazelberts which do not have taproots and, like fruit trees, favor light, well-drained soils. A little extra fuss and care during this first important year will yield a beautiful stand of trees that will be a rewarding asset to the landowner and to future generations.

    Pollination and spacing in nut trees
    Most of the nut trees we offer require pollination by a second tree of the same species to produce a good quantity of filled nuts. In a stand of black walnuts, chestnuts, hickories or oaks, the trees should be planted 20 to 40 feet apart (or as close as 15 feet apart if planting a single row.) The closer spacing will force them to grow straight and tall; after 20 years or so the stand can be thinned for timber. If you do not plan to thin the stand, choose the wider spacing pattern. For hazelberts, which grow as a large bush (10 to15 feet tall at maturity), a spacing of 3 feet apart will make a nice hedge; for pollination they should be no more than 6-8 feet apart. 

    Deer Protection
    In some areas, deer may browse back the tips of black walnut and other nut trees. If this becomes a problem, deer control measures, especially fencing to prevent access while the trees are young, will improve the growth of your nut trees. Our favorite method is making a 5-ft high "cage" out of a 10 ft piece of 6"X6" concrete reinforcement mesh, available in 10 ft sheets from building supply places. This cage  can easily be lifted off for mowing or for using on another tree once it is not needed. (See photo below.) If fencing is not possible, try Plant Pro-tec deer repellent. Avoid the use of plastic "tree tubes," especially in northern areas. They can create a "mini-greenhouse" effect, producing soft, tender growth that is prone to winter injury.

    How soon will they yield nuts?
    This will vary widely with species, soil, climate and care. General guidelines are 5 to 10 years for chestnut, black walnut, oak, and hickory ; 3 to 5 years for hazelberts.
     



    American Chestnut Castanea dentata

    OUT OF STOCK

    2 to 4 ft. trees $16.00 each

    Restoring the American Chestnut, which was wiped out in the 1930's by the blight, has been the focus of groups like the American Chestnut Foundation. In the early 1970's, Fred Ashworth found three trees in the Watertown, NY area which, although blighted, healed over their cankers and continued to produce seed for many years. These are fourth-generation seedlings of those Watertown trees, and are likely to exhibit even more resistance than their predecessors. Plant more than one for pollination. Protect from rodents and deer!

     

    Black Walnut Juglans nigra

    2 to 5 ft. trees $10.00 each, 25 or more $9.00 each, 100 or more $8.00 each

    Without question, our nut trees are far hardier than those offered by any other nursery in the country. Our black walnut seedlings are the results of Fred Ashworth's 50-odd years of breeding for hardiness, timber quality, and cracking quality of nuts. We also collect seed from a few exceptional local parent trees which meet our standard for hardiness and quality. Black walnuts yield a beautiful dark-grained lumber, as well as rare and flavorful nutmeats that retail for around $15/lb. If you wish you may specify seedlings from the list below. Listed by name of mother tree:
     
    Bicentennial The Bicentennial parent which produces these seedlings is of perfect timber type with cracking quality equal to Thomas. Its seedlings are hardy, produce a quantity of large nuts, and are vigorous growers.
    Garden Tree A precocious grower which produces an annual crop of medium sized nuts.
    Medve A local find, growing on the Medve farm at Langdon Cors, NY. Hardy, good timber type.
    Northwestern These seedlings are hardy and uniform growers. The parent tree produces small nuts.
    Putney Probably the largest and oldest black walnut tree growing in northern NY. The nuts are exceptionally large, good crackers and fill well in our short season.
    Well Tree A precocious grower which produces large nuts.
    Weschcke Weschcke seedlings are slow but uniform growers. The parent tree bears a heavy annual crop of nuts.
    illustration black walnut
    Would you like to taste black walnuts?
    Woodward's Walnut World is a family-scale 
    black walnut producer. Telephone 585-765-2544

     
     

    illustration Hazelbert
     

    Hazelbert Corylus sp.

     3 to 5 ft. plants $9.50 each, $160 package of 20

    The best of many crosses made by Fred Ashworth in the 1920's. All of the seedlings are of Skinner (Hazelnut) X Graham and Winkler (Filbert). The former is known for its extreme hardiness and resistance to catkin freezeback; the latter has size and quality of nuts. Hazelberts grow as a tall shrub (8 to12 ft.), and make a wonderful edible hedge. The nut clusters in their fringed husks are very ornamental, and in the Fall the leaves turn a striking mixture of red, yellow, orange and green.

     
     
     

    The labor involved in digging a 3-4 year old young oak or hickory is monumental. They have a taproot that almost corkscrews into the ground, necessitating  laborious trenching around the root system to extract it intact. (See photo.) 
    illustration Bur Oak

    Bur Oak Quercus macrocarpa Ashworth selection

    3 to 5 ft. trees $14.00 each, $115 package of 10

    Discovered by the late Fred Ashworth, the mother tree is a precocious producer of high quality acorns containing nearly no tannic acid (no bitter taste). These seedlings are somewhat slow growing but unequaled for their beauty and ability to last through generations of bad weather and abuse. They are strong, with a straight trunk and gnarly branches that give the oak its ``spooky old tree'' silhouette. The bur oak is the hardiest of all the oaks, and Ashworth's ``sweet'' acorns make it a favorite with wildlife.

    Red Oak Quercus rubra

    3 to 5 ft. trees $14.00 each, $115 package of 10

    One of the fastest growing oaks. This beautiful tree, with its leather-colored leaves chattering in the breeze well into the Fall, will make a handsome yard tree and is a good choice for mixed hardwood plantings, yielding quality lumber. Grown from a truly Zone 3 seed source (north slope of the Adirondack mountains,) these seedlings are especially well adapted to cold locations.

    Shagbark Hickory Carya ovata

    OUT OF STOCK

    2 to 5 ft. trees $14.00 each

    These are seedlings of an extremely cold-hardy local shagbark from the Ashworth plantings. The nuts fill well, are sweet and have relatively thin shells. Hickories put most of their beginning growth into their very substantial taproot, so many of these have a longer root than top!

     

    HARDSHELL NUT CRACKER

    illustration hardshell nut cracker
    This high-leverage heavy duty cracker is designed so that even kids can crack the most difficult nuts. Black walnuts, butternuts, hickory and hazelbert all crack rapidly and easily. Nut size adjustment is simple and the unit may be mounted either horizontally (on a homemade wooden tray) or vertically (wall, etc.) Shells break outward from the kernel yielding chunks instead of bits. Now you can have your own freshly-cracked nuts in breads, cakes, cookies and candy.   Wt. 5 lb., Price: $52.00

    NUT WIZARD HANDY PICK UP TOOL

    Nut Wizard photo
    Perfect for picking up black walnuts and butternuts, but also works for tennis balls, drop apples, oranges, sweet gum fruits, almost anything that is round or oval and between 1 1/4 inch and 4 inches. Comes with its own handle and wire frame unloading bracket, which can be mounted on a standard 5-gallon bucket. Simply place flexible tines down over  the "hump" of the bracket, twist, and voila the nuts or other gathered objects fall easily into the bucket!

    Nut Wizard Tool $50.00, Shipping $20.00: Total = $70.00