Northern Nut Growers Association Report of the Proceedings at the 41st Annual Meeting
Author: Various
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A new book, "The Insect Enemies of Eastern Forests," contains a great deal of information on the insects feeding on nut trees. Unfortunately, it isn't indexed to crops, so you can't look up "walnut" and find what insects bother you. You have to know what the insect is, and you will find it with its insect family. That is U. S. Department of Agriculture Miscellaneous Publication 657, by George E. Craighead. Price $2.50, from the Superintendent of Documents, Washington, D. C.

MR. CORSAN: What in the world has become of the black walnut caterpillar, that big, black fellow with the grey hairs?

DR. ADAMS: Maybe they are at a low point in a cycle. Mr. Bernath will show you a few of them.

MR. CORSAN: He might show me a few of them, but I have been pestered with them for years, and this year I haven't got any.

DR. ADAMS: I suppose natural conditions have taken care of them for a while, but they will come back again.


DR. MacDANIELS: Thank you, very much, sir. We will take a few minutes recess now.

(Whereupon, a short recess was taken.)

Editor's Note: The following paper which was delayed, was originally scheduled for our 1949 Report.

Insecticides for Nut Insects

E. H. SIEGLER United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Administration Bureau of Entomology and Plant Quarantine

Fortunately, the growers of nuts do not have to combat a large number of injurious insect species. However, some species do at times cause a heavy loss of nuts and may also damage the vegetation growth of the trees. Injury by insects will vary from year to year, due to various causes, and insects frequently show varietal host preferences. Timely use of insecticides is the most effective means of combating many harmful species.

Until the beginning of World War II a rather limited number of insecticides was available, such as lead arsenate, cryolite, nicotine, mineral oil emulsions, and rotenone. Some injurious insects were satisfactorily controlled through the timely application of one or the other of these materials, or combinations of them; others survived in damaging numbers in spite of all attempts to suppress them.

During and since World War II, both in the United States and abroad, work on insecticides has been stepped up markedly. As a result, many new insecticides have been developed and are available for general use.

The first of the new insecticides about which we heard was DDT. Actually, the compound itself was not a new one, since it was prepared by a German student chemist in 1874. However, no use was found for it until 1939, when a Swiss chemist found it promising as an insecticide against the Colorado potato beetle. It was first tested in the United States a few years later.

Since the successful introduction of DDT, promising new insecticides have become available more frequently and in greater numbers than ever before. Among these materials are certain chlorinated hydrocarbons related to DDT. These include methoxychlor and TDE, neither of which is, on the whole, as useful as DDT but both of which are of value and have an important advantage over DDT in that they are reported to be less toxic to warm-blooded animals. Other new chlorinated hydrocarbons include benzene hexachloride, synthesized in 1828 and first tested against insects in France in 1941 and discovered about the same time in England; chlordane, developed in the United States a few years ago; and toxaphene. Several organic phosphorus compounds, including hexaethyl tetraphosphate, tetraethyl pyrophosphate, and parathion, have also been developed.

Technical benzene hexachloride is a mixture of several isomers, the gamma isomer being the most toxic to insects. The practically pure isomer is known as lindane. A handicap to the general use of benzene hexachloride on fruit is its tendency to cause off-flavor condition when applied too close to harvest. Lindane is less likely to cause off-flavor in fruit than technical benzene hexachloride but may not overcome this fault altogether.

The organic phosphate insecticides, like DDT, were first found of value in Europe and were introduced into the United States after the close of World War II. Parathion in particular shows great promise for the control of many insect pests. Although these compounds are very poisonous and must be handled strictly in accordance with the manufacturers' recommendations, a recent announcement by Arnold J. Lehman, of the Food and Drug Administration, indicates that their residues are not likely to be harmful. He has stated that "parathion is not stored in the tissues to an appreciable extent—it is rapidly destroyed by the tissues of the body which in turn is an added mechanism for the prevention of tissue accumulation." Residues of hexaethyl tetraphosphate and tetraethyl pyrophosphate persist for only a short time and residues of parathion drop to a low level within 10 to 14 days after application. This information, however, does not make it unnecessary for the user to observe strictly all warnings and precautions issued by the manufacturers of parathion and of other organic phosphates. Serious effects and deaths have occurred though excessive exposures to parathion.

General Information Regarding the Use of the New Organic Insecticides

Handling the insecticides. All the new organic insecticides, the organic phosphates in particular, are to some degree toxic not only to many insects but to man and animals as well. Even the most toxic ones can be used, however, without harmful effects on the operator, provided all the cautions issued by the manufacturer are properly followed. Special care must be taken in handling concentrated insecticides preparatory to making diluted spray or dust applications.

Spray concentrations. DDT has been used more extensively than any of the other newer insecticides and for this reason there is considerable information relative to the spray concentrations known to be effective against insects susceptible to it. For spray purposes DDT is generally employed at the rate of 1-1/2 to 4 pounds of 50 percent wettable powder per 100 gallons of water.

Parathion is being used at 1/2 to 1-1/2 pounds of 15 percent wettable powder per 100 gallons of water for mites and up to 2 pounds to 100 gallons of water for insects more resistant to it. The occurrence of injury to the foliage and fruit of some varieties of apples when this insecticide is used is under investigation.

Benzene hexachloride (10 percent gamma isomer, wettable) is being used at 2 to 4 pounds, and sometimes less depending upon the insect, per 100 gallons of water. Wettable mixtures containing 25 percent of lindane (approximately pure gamma isomer) are used at dosages which would give an equivalent quantity of the gamma isomer in the diluted spray.

Chlordane is usually employed at the rate of 2 to 3 pounds of 50 percent wettable powder and toxaphene at 2 to 4 pounds of 40 percent wettable powder per 100 gallons.

These insecticides are also being sold for use as dusts, either ready to use or in a more concentrated form which can be reduced to dusting strength through the addition of inert material.

Spray Residues. Spray residues are not important on nut crops, but on fruits it is important to time the insecticide applications so that harmful residues are avoided. Animals should not be allowed to graze vegetation beneath trees recently treated. Instructions on the packaged insecticide should be followed.

Effect on beneficial insects. Since the more potent of the newer organic insecticides are toxic to many parasitic and predatory insects, all of which help to reduce the populations of injurious species, these insecticides, if used, must be largely relied upon to effect control by themselves. Often no immediate assistance is forthcoming from beneficial insects after these materials have been used.

Nut Insect Investigations

Except for studies on the chestnut weevils, nut insect investigations by the Bureau of Entomology and Plant Quarantine are being conducted primarily on the pecan at southern laboratories. Many of the remarks in this paper are therefore based on information obtained from these laboratories. In view of the short time the new organic insecticides have been available, work to determine their place in nut insect control programs is largely in the experimental stage. Much further work will be necessary before detailed instructions can be given for their general use.

Insects Attacking the Nuts

The Pecan weevil. The adult of the pecan weevil[8] is a snout beetle that attacks not only pecan throughout the South but also hickory in the eastern half of the United States. During mid-season, previous to the formation of the kernel, nuts are frequently punctured for feeding purposes. This results in failure of the nuts to complete their development. The principal injury, however, is caused by grubs that develop from eggs laid in the nuts after the kernels have formed. This is usually during September on pecans in the South. The grubs feed on the kernels and may consume them completely (Fig. 1).

[8] Curculio caryae (Horn).

Applications of sprays containing 6 pounds of 50 percent DDT wettable powder per 100 gallons of water just previous to and during the oviposition period have proved effective against this pest.

Nut curculios. Several species of curculios, such as the butternut curculio[9] (Fig. 2) and the hickorynut curculio,[10] infest the fruit of these and other nut trees. Their life histories and methods of attack are somewhat alike and for the purpose of this report the butternut curiculio is given as an example. This insect lays its eggs in both the young shoots and nuts, which usually drop as a result of the injury. The larvae then develop to maturity within the dying tissues after which they enter the soil and transform to adults. Subsequently they leave the soil to pass the winter above ground protected from low temperatures by weeds or other vegetation.

[9] Conotrachelus juglandis Lee.

[10] Conotrachelus affinis Boh.

Lead arsenate, 4 pounds per 100 gallons of water, has been relied upon in the past for control of various nut curculios. Among the newer insecticides, benzene hexachloride (6 percent gamma), 4 to 6 pounds per 100 gallons, has shown promise against a shoot curculio on pecans when applied soon after the trees start growth in the spring.

Hickory shuckworm. The hickory shuckworm[11] is another serious pest of pecan and hickory nuts. Early in the year, previous to the hardening of the shells, the kernels are eaten. This injury causes many of the nuts to drop. In the fall, the later generations tunnel within and feed upon the shucks only. The affected nuts are usually smaller than normal; in addition the shells are often stained and are more difficult to separate from the husks.

[11] Laspeyresia caryana (Fitch).

Extensive experimentation in the control of this insect has been carried out without much success. No effective insecticide treatment can be recommended for its control.

Walnut husk maggot. The adult of the walnut husk maggot[12] is a fly (Fig. 3); it is related to other injurious fruit flies such as the apple maggot, Mediterranean fruit fly, and the oriental fruit fly, which has recently been found in Hawaii. Adults emerge from the soil and fly to the trees in midsummer. Egg laying follows in 1 to 3 weeks, the eggs being deposited on the husks of several kinds of nuts. The maggots feed within the husks. Not only is the quality of infested nuts lowered, but, in addition, the husks are more difficult to remove. A closely related species is particularly damaging to the Persian or English walnut in California.

[12] Rhagoletis suavis Loew.

Lead arsenate, 2 to 4 pounds per 100 gallons of water, in combination with an equal quantity of hydrated lime is quite effective in destroying the adults of the walnut husk maggot when applied at the time they are present.

Stinkbugs and leaf-footed bugs. There are a number of stinkbugs and leaf-footed bugs (Fig. 4), in addition to the species mentioned,[13][14] which are responsible for important injuries to pecans, filberts, and other nuts. These insects puncture the immature nuts with their beaks. The punctured areas become spongy, somewhat dark in color, and are bitter to the taste; on pecan the typical injury is referred to as black pit and kernel spot.

[13] Nezara vizidula (L.).

[14] Leptoglossus phyllopus (L.).

Crops of favorable host plants such as cowpeas and soybeans should not be planted in or adjacent to nut orchards subject to attack by these sucking bugs. In general, orchard sanitation should be practiced.

Insects Attacking the Foliage

Black pecan aphid. Pecan trees at times suffer sufficient damage from the black pecan aphid[15] to cause considerable defoliation (Fig. 5) during the latter part of the season. The injury to foliage in its earlier stages consists of irregularly shaped yellowish areas which turn brown when the tissues die.

[15] Melanocallis caryaefoliae (Davis).

This aphid is usually controlled with nicotine sulfate (40 percent nicotine), 3/8 pint plus summer oil emulsion, 2 quarts per 100 gallons of spray. Parathion and benzene hexachloride have given good results in experimental work but are not yet generally recommended.

Pecan phylloxera. The pecan phylloxera[16] is related to aphids. It attacks principally the vegetative parts of the tree such as the leaves, petioles, and shoots on which galls (Fig. 6) are produced. Pecans, hickories, and other species of nuts are subject to infestation.

[16] Phylloxera devastatrix Perg.

In the past a spray of nicotine sulfate (40 percent nicotine) 13 ounces combined with either lime-sulfur solution, 2-1/2 gallons per 100 gallons of water, or lubricating-oil emulsion, 2 quarts per 100 gallons, applied in the late dormant period has been the standard recommendation. In recent experiments in the South with some of the new organic sprays, benzene hexachloride and some of the dinitro compounds have indicated good promise.

Fall webworm,[17] walnut caterpillar,[18] and hickory tussock moth.[19] The caterpillars of these species (Figs. 7, 8, 9) are frequent pests on the foliage of nut trees. They often defoliate entire branches.

[17] Hyphantria cunea (Drury).

[18] Datana integerrima (G. and R.)

[19] Halisidota caryae (Harr.)

The best time to apply control measures is as soon as possible after the caterpillars hatch. The insects can be readily destroyed with lead arsenate, 3 pounds, or DDT (2 pounds) of 50 percent wettable powder, per 100 gallons, applied when they appear. Other new organic insecticides may also be effective but have not been widely tested.

The rose chafer and Japanese beetle. Adults of the rose chafer[20] (Fig. 10) and the Japanese beetle[21] are voracious feeders on the foliage of nut trees and must be destroyed if severe injury is to be avoided.

[20] Marcordactylus subspinosus (F.).

[21] Popillia japonica Newm.

Fortunately these insects may now be controlled by spraying with DDT, 2 pounds of 50-percent wettable powder per 100 gallons of water, when the beetles appear. In the case of the Japanese beetle a second application may be necessary if the infestation is heavy.

Spider mites. Nut trees, especially those which have been sprayed with DDT, may become seriously injured by various species of mites.[22] DDT is very toxic to the natural insect enemies of plant-feeding mites and therefore the mites build up to injurious numbers.

[22] Tetranychus sp. and others.

Of the various miticides recently tested on pecan, a spray of parathion was the most promising. In some recent tests for the control of spider mites on chestnut trees, 1-1/2 pounds of 15 percent parathion wettable powder per 100 gallons of water was effective. Do not use parathion unless you observe all the precautions contained on the package label of the material.

Insects Attacking the Trunk and Branches

A number of insects cause important damage to the trunk and branches of nut trees.

Obscure scale and others. The obscure scale[23] infests a variety of nut trees. On pecan the chief injury results from attacks on branches under three inches in diameter.

[23] Chrysomphalus obscurus (Comst.).

The obscure scale and other scale insects can be controlled with lubricating-oil emulsion during the dormant period. However, nut trees are often susceptible to oil damage, especially at 3 percent concentration. Since healthy trees are more resistant to oil injury, it is therefore advisable to watch for scale infestations so as to spray them before the trees are weakened.

Twig girdler. Nut trees are sometimes attacked by the twig girdler[24] (Fig. 11). This beetle lays eggs in the twigs, which are girdled so as to stop the flow of sap that would normally prevent hatching. The girdled twigs usually become detached from the trees and as a result the nut-bearing wood is reduced.

[24] Oncideres cingulata (Say).

The standard recommendation for control of this insect has been to gather and destroy the infested twigs in the orchard and from any infested trees nearby. Recent tests on pecan in northern Florida indicate that DDT and parathion may be effective against this insect. Three applications (the first on August 26 when the first girdled twigs were observed and the others on September 9 and 23) of DDT, 4 pounds of 50 percent wettable powder per 100 gallons of water, or parathion, 3 pounds of 15 percent wettable powder per 100 gallons, gave complete control. Further experiments will be required to determine the minimum effective concentration of spray and the number of applications needed for control. It is suggested that DDT be used for the control of this insect until more information is available on how to handle and to use parathion.

Flatheaded apple tree borer. The adult beetle of the flathead apple tree borer[25] (Fig. 12) deposits its eggs throughout the summer season, preferably in the small grooves of bark on the unshaded portions of the trunk of pecan and other trees. The borers (Fig. 13) hatch and tunnel through the bark to the cambium layer. Young trees may readily be girdled (Fig. 14).

[25] Chrysobothris femorata (Oliv.).

To avoid this insect as far as possible, orchard sanitation should be practiced and the trees should be kept in a healthy condition. In some plantings wrapping the trunks with paper or burlap to protect against egg laying and maintaining low branches to shade the trunk have been helpful. Cutting out the borers with a knife has also been resorted to; trunk washes have likewise been used but have not been very effective.

Buffalo treehopper and periodical cicada. Buffalo treehoppers[26] (Fig. 15) and the periodical cicada[27] weaken twigs by inserting their eggs in them. The injured bark becomes roughened as it heals (Fig. 16), and the growth of the limb is retarded.

[26] Ceresa bubalus (L.).

[27] Magicicada septendecim (L.).

Pruning of weakened twigs is recommended for wood injured by the cicada. If treehoppers are a pest, clean cultivation will help. Cover crops of cowpeas or clovers should not be planted. In preliminary tests two or three applications of tetraethyl pyrophosphate (20 percent), 3/4 pint per 100 gallons of water, have given promising results in controlling the periodical cicada. The first application should be made after the cicadas appear and the others as needed to prevent damage.

Observations on Effects of Low Temperatures in Winter 1949-1950 on Walnuts and Filberts in Oregon and Washington


Horticulturist, United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Administration, Bureau of Plant Industry, Soils, and Agricultural Engineering, Oregon State College, Corvallis, Oregon

In western Oregon and Washington, where the Japan Current is supposed to keep the winter temperatures moderate, something happens every now and then and we get really severe winters. We can't blame it on the "A" bomb because we had severe winter injury in 1919 and 1935 long before the "A" bomb.

The last two winters have been exceptionally cold, but this past winter of 1949-1950 was much more severe than the previous one.

In 1948-1949, the cold came rather suddenly in the latter part of December. In the past winter, 1949-1950, the real cold came on January 30, with temperatures ranging from 10 to 30 degrees below zero F. Most official temperatures were higher; but at Corvallis the official temperatures were taken at least 60 feet above the ground level, on the roof of the Agricultural Building, which is over a steam-heated building and is old enough to be not very well insulated. This cold continued in somewhat modified form for a week.

During the previous winter the lowest temperature recorded in the nut growing areas was about 10 to 11 degrees above zero F., and the severe cold lasted for only a couple of days.

In both winters the ground was fairly well covered with snow, but with considerably more snow this past winter than the previous winter.

No apparent damage to Persian walnuts was observed as a result of the cold in the 1948-1949 winter, but in certain low-lying areas catkins of Barcelona and Daviana filberts were killed, especially those of the latter. Considerable dieback of filberts occurred; but during the following growing season recovery was effected and at the end of the summer very little evidence of winter injury was visible.

The injury resulting from the cold weather of the past winter was much more severe than that of the previous winter. Whereas filberts were the only nut trees injured in 1948-1949, they escaped with relatively little damage in 1949-1950 in comparison with Persian walnuts.

On February 11, 1950, ten days after the really severe week, several walnut growers of long experience held grave fears for the entire industry. Peach and apple trees, which seem to exhibit winter injury more quickly than walnuts, showed so much damage then that walnut growers thought the injury to the Persian walnut would be even worse.

From February 11, 1950, to the present date (July 30) I have been making observations from time to time in different locations with special attention to walnuts and with some to filberts. It is thought that certain of these observations might be of interest to nut growers in other areas, even though there is nothing particularly new or startling about them. They do, however, tend to show how surprisingly well the Persian walnut trees can withstand severe cold if it occurs after they have once gone into dormancy.

Generally speaking, the winter injury to walnuts has been spotty. No areas of great size have been either free of injury or severely injured. Usually, where a difference in severity of damage is found between areas close together, some reason for the difference can be found, but it is not always evident on the surface.

Injury to Walnuts

With the possible exception of southern Oregon, it is safe to say that 100 percent of the walnut trees in Oregon and Washington suffered some twig injury as a result of last winter's cold. In many cases the subsequent dieback of the twigs may extend only a few inches, but sometimes the injury involves not only the past season's growth but that of three or even four years back.

As might well be expected, this twig injury of necessity has meant the loss of many terminal and lateral buds which bear the female flowers; so for that reason, if for no other, this twig injury has assumed serious aspects.

In many cases the catkins were severely injured even where there was little or no twig injury. The catkins of the Persian walnut seem to be extremely sensitive to cold. Many Persian walnut trees in Oregon this year failed to produce any catkins at all. Some produced very few normal catkins, but some half-developed and deformed catkins. An examination of these partially injured catkins, however, revealed the fact that they did produce some pollen. It will always remain a mystery to me how as many walnuts were pollinated and set as there were, with the scant crop of catkins.

In practically every orchard examined, where the temperature got as low as minus 10 degrees F., the pith cells were blackened. This is not uncommon in other tree crops following severe winter injury. Fairly good peach crops have been borne in Georgia on trees that had the pith cells completely blackened.

In the case of walnuts this year, many growers were considerably worried by the fact that even the wood tissue outside the pith region was black and watersoaked. However, to date (July 30, 1950) this condition has not proven serious; as long as the cambium cells were not injured no real trouble has developed. In some cases under observation, even where some injury to the cambium cells was known to have existed, enough live ones have been left to effect recovery. Compared to peach, holly, and even apple trees the Persian walnut has put up a marvelous fight to recover from the injury sustained.

Factors Accentuating Winter Injury in Walnuts

After the several months of observation, certain factors appear invariably to account for excessive damage to walnut orchards. Elevation seems to be a principal factor. The hillside orchards or those on upland sites (soils) were far less injured than the river-bottom or valley-floor orchards, even though the latter may be on a better soil as far as fertility is concerned. My early prediction of 50 percent of a crop in the hillside orchards seems now to have been about 10 percent short, unless other factors become involved. On the other hand, my early prediction of 25 percent of a crop in the valley-floor orchards has been close to correct. Of course, certain valley-floor orchards with a combination of adverse factors won't have even a 5 percent crop.

Older orchards were more severely hurt than younger orchards with otherwise similar conditions. This is possibly due to the lack of vigor and of reserve material, resulting from crowding and competition for elements of nutrition.

The size of the crop the preceeding year seems invariably to have had an effect upon amount of damage done. The matter of reserves is again involved. Two orchards that bore a reduced crop last year because of spring frost injury have come through much better than some other similar orchards, at practically the same elevation and age, that bore a crop last year.

Two adjacent hillside orchards show considerable difference in degree of winter injury and crop prospects for this year. It is believed that this difference was due to the fact that in one orchard 35 percent of the crop was destroyed by blight last year, in comparison with a 1 percent loss in the other. The owners and I estimate that there is at least 20 percent larger crop this year in the orchard which had the heavy loss from blight last year.

In several orchards where different levels of fertilization have been used by the grower, it appears that the more liberal the application of fertilizer, particularly nitrogen, the less severe was the winter damage sustained.

At the college orchard in Corvallis, the one tree that got no additional nitrogen last year and that bore the heaviest crop of nuts is outstandingly the most severely winter injured of the 17 trees involved.

Only two varieties of walnuts have been studied, Franquette and Mayette, and some Carpathian seedlings in one orchard. Here in Oregon the Mayette seems to have generally withstood the winter injury better than the Franquette. It is my belief that they are just naturally a little more vigorous than the Franquette. Yet they never seem to overproduce as the Franquette sometime does. Last year was the "on" year for Franquettes and that might easily account for the generally apparent better condition of the Mayettes this year.

Carpathians Resist Winter Best

Near Ontario, Oregon, I saw 7 seedling Carpathian walnut trees early this spring. They were leafed out and the catkins were elongated before any Franquettes, even in the Willamette Valley, had started breaking buds. No sign of winter injury was apparent on the Carpathian trees at that time, yet Franquettes at the Malheur Experiment Station, a mile away, were obviously killed to the groundline. The owner, Mr. Peter Countryman, says these trees are often damaged by spring frosts but they always produce some nuts.

A letter dated August 4, from Mr. Countryman, indicates that a hard frost on the morning of April 24 when the temperature dropped to 22 degrees, did considerable damage to the new growth and catkins on the lower half of the Carpathian walnut trees. He estimates not to exceed one-third of a crop on these Carpathian trees this year; but he says that since the freeze the trees have made good growth, the new terminals being about 18 inches in length and the nuts on them are very large.

To sum up the walnut situation, then, the encouraging thing is that no walnut orchards have been called to my attention that were completely killed. Several badly neglected orchards and two orchards where it is said that the temperature dropped lower than minus 25 degrees F. are so severely damaged that it is impractical to try to save them, but even these are not completely killed.

Injury to Filberts

From the less comprehensive observations made on filberts following the severe winter just past, it appears in general that when the filbert tree has gone into dormancy it is more tolerant of cold than the walnut. The difference of one month in time of occurrence of the cold in the two winters seems to have had more bearing on the damage to filberts than the difference in temperature. In the Forest Grove, Oregon, area, and in Clark County, Washington, filbert trees, however did suffer severely from the cold last winter, but these two areas were the "cold spots" of the Northwest.

It seems as if the same factors that accentuate winter damage in walnuts work in a similar way on filberts, except that the elevation factor does not seem to be of so great importance. Age of tree, level of nutrition, and size of preceeding year's crop seem to be more important than elevation. Young filbert orchards, on either hillside or valley-floor sites, seem to be much less severely hurt than older orchards on the same sites. It is the acreage of young filbert trees that will make good the agricultural statistician's estimate of 40 to 50 percent of a filbert crop this year.

I have seen one 32-acre orchard of 24-year-old filbert trees that was injured beyond repair, but they were crowded and unfertilized. At the very same location a 14-acre orchard of 15-year-old filberts with adequate spacing was not seriously injured, even though the trees were not fertilized.

One other orchard in a poor location and on waterlogged soil, which has had little or no care, has likewise been lost. Filberts definitely were hurt in the two "cold spots" previously mentioned, but official reports of minus 18 degrees F. were common in that area.

There was a noticeable difference in damage to catkins between Daviana and DuChilly. Very few Daviana catkins produced pollen; but DuChilly seemed to be fairly normal.

Injury in filberts was confined mostly to the catkins and twigs. Excessive sucker growth up and down the main trunk and branches has taken place in the filberts, as is the case in walnuts.

In neither walnuts nor filberts was there much splitting of the bark on the trunk. This was probably because there was no sudden fluctuation in temperatures and sunshine was not excessive during the critically cold days.

It has been previously stated that the filbert is possibly more tolerant of cold than the walnut. In spite of this there probably has been more extensive damage to filberts than to walnuts; but it must be remembered that filberts are the principal nut crop in those two "cold spots." Not many walnuts are grown there, but the ones that are were likewise injured.

Editor's Note: Mr. Gellatly's following papers were read by title.

Effects of the Winter of 1949-50 on Nut Trees in British Columbia


Box 19, Westbank, B. C.

(Orchard at Gellatly, B. C.)

Our district is just recovering (in August) from the effects of the toughest winter we have experienced here in the past 50 years. This gave the weather test to the tune of -22 deg. F., official. The unofficials were of 30 to 40 below—depending on distances and location from Okanagan Lake, a deep body of water three to four miles wide and eighty miles long. This lake rarely freezes over completely, especially near our section; so the open water acts as a thermostat during most winters. But the past one pulled a new stunt and it froze over completely giving zero winds a vast open sweep, so that to be near the lake was a disadvantage, for it was colder there than it was farther back, in more sheltered locations.

Heartnuts and Hybrids

The bright spot in the nut tree picture is our heartnut trees. They all came through in good shape, making rampant growths and carrying a heavy crop. These include: 2 Walters, 4 O.K. Heart, 1 Canoka, 1 Slioka, 1 Rover, 2 Calendar, 1 Westoka, 1 Nursoka, 1 Aloka, 1 Symoka, 15 select unnamed bearing seedlings, yet on trial. All are promising. Also we have three of the Elfin paper shell heartnut hybrids. I have failed to find a good pollinator for these Elfins, so they are shy croppers, although producing plenty of the female blooms. All of the above trees are 6 inches in diameter and up to 20 inches.

Then come the Buart nuts. I coined this name to designate the hybrids I had made having the butternut (J. cineria) as the pollen parent and Calendar heartnut (J. sieboldiana cordiformis) as the mother tree. Possibly the seven best of these are: Leslie, Dunoka, Fioka, Okanda, Kingsbury, Penoka, Flavo. These trees are all carrying crops and most of them are making good growth.


Ackerman, Brag, Comet, Craig, Holder, Petoka, Carey, Baroka, Barcelona, Bawdin, Firstoka (Gellatly No. 1). These have made a good showing, as the majority of the trees or bushes under 4 to 6 inch crown diameter of these varieties, are doing well and carrying good crops, while many above these diameters suffered in varying degrees from slightly to severely, apparently regardless of variety, location, or soil on which they grew. It may be noted that all these varieties have been hardy in the past, but age was adding up and age evidently had somewhat to do with their inability to take the punishment they got this past winter. For all my large Bing and Lambert cherry trees were severely injured or entirely winter killed, as were nearby peaches, apricots, pear, and some apple trees, particularly in the larger sizes, while many of these younger trees were uninjured, except that they are fruitless this season.

Soft Shell Walnuts

(Juglans regia)

Broadview variety on Gellatly Farm, of 20 bearing trees, all suffered winter injury for first time in 20 years. This injury varied all the way from freezing back two to three feet of all higher branches and twigs, to an actual loss of one-third to two-thirds of entire tree and trunk. At date of writing all are staging a good comeback with no care but a "wait-and-see" policy as to final treatment. There was so much loss as to involve too much work if pruning and after care of sprouts were undertaken. It was decided to leave the dead limbs and branches as a protection to the fast growing new sprouts, which, without this protection, would probably have been badly damaged by wind and rain storms. Even large birds lighting on these new sprouts might break them down.

The dead limbs will be gradually removed later, as the new limbs harden up and take over. Many of these will be left as supports for at least two years, when I expect most of these trees will be back in production, if we get a return to normal (minus 10 deg. F.) winters, many will produce in 1951, as the new wood is showing a good growth of catkins. Although all bearing trees on my place were injured, the younger trees in my nursery were not hurt to any noticeable extent. At Summerland Experimental Station, 25 miles south of Gellatly, grow two large Broadview walnut trees supplied by myself. I had grafted on these black walnut roots (J. nigra) at the ground line, in every respect like my own. These trees are carrying a good crop. One shows slight winter injury, the other none at all. The official low for their location was 22 deg. below F. with nearby unofficials to 30 deg. below.

Their present location is at least 200 feet above lake level, and on very well drained sandy loam. Mine are about 30 feet above the lake and on somewhat heavier loam. I note that trees on my more gravelly soil came through in the best shape at official-22 deg. F., unofficial 24 to 28 below. My Broadview that made best survival had grown the previous year in a chicken yard. Ground was well scratched over and droppings incorporated in top 4 inches of soil. Tree was flood irrigated three or four times in dry season. On this tree only outer new branches were killed and tree gives every indication of being back in crop in 1951 season.

The crop record on this tree is from 1945 and reads '45—35 pounds; '46—75 pounds; '47—91 pounds; '48—36 pounds; '49—100 pounds. Weight is for clean, undried, and partly dried nuts at time of picking up. Some of the other Broadview trees have higher crop records, although of same age and size, with possibly a bit better soil, in same grove. One tree in six years, '44 to '49 inclusive, had an average of 74 pounds per year; another had an average for the same years of 104 pounds per year. Just recently I made a special trip to see how the parent Broadview tree had wintered. I found it had sustained severe damage to two-thirds of the upper part of the trunk and main branches. The lower third was staging a good comeback, despite unofficials of 35 to 40 below zero F. as reported by neighboring farmers.

The following varieties of soft shell bearing walnut trees were also winter injured: Munsoka, badly, top two-thirds of trunk; Linoka, badly, top two-thirds of trunk; Myoka (Jumbo type) one-third of top branches; Geloka (Jumbo type) frozen to ground line but sprouts two feet high now growing. On Sirdar (a Jumbo type long nut), only outer tips of branches were killed. This was a surprise to me, as it is a second generation seedling of Italian source. The parent tree grew and cropped well for many years on bench land at Sirdar, in southern interior of B. C. until the winter of 1935-36, when it was so badly damaged that the owner had it removed. I rather looked for a similar fate in this one. There is this difference: mine was not as old nor had it been cropping heavily as yet. The season here is barely long enough to develop fully the kernels of Sirdar.

Crath Carpathian Walnut No. 46

This walnut was grafted on black walnut (J. nigra) root in 1944 and planted here on low loam soil in 1945. It never has been hardy under our conditions, winter killing some every winter since it was planted. This past winter it was killed to below snow line 18 inches above union, whereas Broadview trees alongside, which are the same in every respect, never were injured until this past winter. Then only minor damage to soft new growth was done. So it looks as though Broadview is still the best bet for our conditions.

I am of the opinion that extreme temperature is not the sole determining factor in causing winter injury to nut or other trees. This opinion is based on the behavior of trees that have winter killed continuously while in certain soil, but on being moved to another spot having enriched soil of similar make-up and drainage located only 200 yards away, have never winter killed since removal, and have taken much worse winters, including the one just past.

The fact that many of our introductions grow and thrive 150 to 200 miles north of here, where temperatures drop to minus 35 deg. to 40 deg., with occasional drops to 54 deg. below zero. Check this on your map of Interior of B. C. on 53 deg. latitude at Quesnel, B. C. I see a geology map lists that district as sedimentary and volcanic rocks. My informant grows butternuts, chestnuts, and filberts. Another grower at Clinton, located on 50 deg. latitude, central B. C. with temperatures to minus 40 deg. F., grows Japanese and black walnuts, also Pioneer almond. We are sure that the same temperatures with our conditions would kill most of our trees.



Walnut Honey Sandwich

1 Teaspoon crystallized Honey (the coarser the crystal the better) 3 Broadview walnut half kernels or quarters.

Place honey on one-half kernel, then stick the other half on the honey, making a small sandwich, or kernel covered ball of honey. This is a delightful confection.

Potato Nut Soup

1. Grate 1 tablespoon onion. 2. Grate 1 good-sized potato.

Place in double boiler, stir while adding boiling water, to a thin paste. Stir until cooked clear like corn starch pudding. Add hot whole milk to bring to creamy soup. At this stage add one-fourth cup filbert kernels. First put nuts through one of the new nut planing gadgets. These are better than the old grinder shredders or choppers, as shavings are so thin and soft they just melt in hot liquid. (Also delightful on ice cream or fresh fruit.) Have potatoes well cooked before adding milk or nut flakes. Cooking nuts too long sets up some chemical change that thins the creamy texture of the soup.

Description of Filazel Varieties[28]

[28] Since the Peace River hazel is apparently Corylus rostrata these filbert hybrids of Mr. Gellatly belong to a different category from the "hazilberts" of Mr. Weschcke and the "Mildred filberts" which had C. americana parentage.—J. C. McD.


The name (Filazel) I coined to designate those crosses I had made, having the Peace River hazel as the mother tree and Craig and others of our large filberts as the pollen parent.


Has thin shell. Clean, well-filled kernel. Is heavy cropper and free husker. Nuts mature early. Are well filled by August fifth with shells starting to brown. Fully ripe by August tenth to fifteenth.


One of the best of my first selections. Very attractive, heavy cropper, well-filled kernels by August first, shells coloring by August fifth. Ripe and falling August fifteenth.


Good cropper of roundish nuts, having short open husks and good clean kernels.

Myoka In clusters 1 to 6. Has short open husks. Leaves color well in the fall. Has ornamental value.


One to 7 nuts in cluster in fancy frilled and rolled back husk. Nuts roundish, of fair size and color. Flavor, good. Leaves color well in fall. Has ornamental value.


Medium-sized nut exposed in clusters 4 to 6. Open husk, folded back.


Medium size for Filazel. Thin-shelled roundish nut, 4 to 6 in clusters. Very short, partially closed husk.


Two to 5 nuts in cluster. Clean kernels. Husk half-inch longer than nut. Has open side. Good cropper.


Long husk like parent hazel, but lacking prickles of the wild. Medium sized nut in clusters, 1 to 4.


Two to 4 in cluster. Medium sized nut with clean kernels in open husks.

No. 500

Four to 10 nuts in cluster. Has short open husk. Good-sized nut of Barcelona type. Is a good cropper of clean kernels. Shell heavy.

No. 502

Largest Barcelona type Filazel that has fruited to date. Clusters contain 4 to 8 nuts enclosed in heavy medium-length closed husks.

No. 503

One to 9 nuts in cluster, having clean, full kernels in thick shells enclosed in short open husks.

No. 505

One to 6 nuts in cluster, having closed, medium length husks. A good cropper.

No. 509

Two to 6 roundish nuts in long closed husks free of prickles so common on wild hazels. A good cropper. The parent hazels used for these crosses mature the nuts by the first of August and were winter hardy at-60 deg. F. in Peace River, Alberta.

Other Hazels

Manchurian short bush hazel, distinctive clipped off top on leaf with some colored (of reddish hue). This bush retains leaves all winter, and would make a good protective covering for wild life. Has well-flavored, clean kernels fully developed by August seventh, 1950. Kernel is enclosed in heavy, squat shells encircled with distinctive short closed husk, as if folded together just covering nut. The leaf shape and markings carry through and appear in the young seedlings.

Experiments with Tree Hazels and Chestnuts


Corylus jacquemontii

(Smooth Bark) India Tree Hazel

Tree No. 1. Location—N.W. corner Lot 6, subdivision Lot 487, Scions from Kew Botanical Garden, England. Top grafted on Craig filbert 10 feet from ground line. This made good annual growth and compatibly well adjusted unions, which after many years are still in line and not readily detected except by difference in color and character of bark—the grafted top being smooth and lighter of color than Craig stock. Although stocks were bearing when cut for grafting, and scions were from bearing trees and had catkins on when received, grafts were trained to take over and become the main growth and leading tree from the Craig crown. This grafted tree did not produce catkins or nuts for four or five years, but branches on the stock went right on bearing, as did also other Craig sections on same root crown or filbert clump used for grafting above tree hazel. At date of writing, and following the severest winter of the past 45 years, when temperatures dropped to -24 deg. F., followed by brief, bright sunshine and rapid rise of temperature, all ungrafted filberts of over three to four inches in diameter are dead or nearly so, while suckers 2-1/2 inches in diameter and smaller are quite sound and making good growth. So, also, are the stocks or sections top grafted to the tree hazel—even the larger 4 to 4-1/2 inches in diameter trunks. I ask why, as by all ordinary results the grafted trees should have been the easiest damaged. This tree, and the other sections of filberts on same crown, had cropped for three years past, so that from that angle they should have been on an equal footing. Only a few clusters of nuts grew on this Corylus jacquemontii this 1950 season.

Data on tree size: Height 32 feet—was grafted about 10 feet above ground line. Circumference of tree—12 inches above ground is 15 inches. At 4 inches below the graft, it is 10 inches, and the same four inches above graft union, which is very uniform, and if this combination could be reversed we would have an ideal non-suckering stock for commercial filbert orchards. Jacquemontii also buds well on cork bark C. colurna tree hazel.

Corylus jacquemontii Smooth Bark India Tree Hazel on Cork Bark Turkish Tree Hazel

Corylus colurna Stock

Tree No. 2 Location—S.W. corner of Lot 6, subdivision Lot 487. Budded August 15, 1941, at six feet from ground line, to one inch two year growth. Two years later top was removed and bud made to take over leadership. From then on it made good growth. Removal of top was not done at one operation, but first year leader was cut one-third way through, on long slope from bud downward on both sides, and allowed to callus over one year. Second year leader was cut further and when callused, top was then removed. This treatment gave good coverage of wound on trunk. Tree bore first crop 1949, eight years after budding. Nuts 1/2 inch in diameter, moderate shell of roundish form, well filled, with good flavor, clean kernels. August 4, 1950—Tree has a base circumference at ten inches above ground of 18-1/2 inches—at six feet above, 14 inches—below union circumference is 14 inches, while four inches above union it is 11 inches. No evidence of any winter injury after taking a-24 deg. F. temperature. No crop this year, but has a good crop of catkins showing for 1951.

Corylus hetrophyllia Japanese Tree Hazel

Tree No. 3. Location—N. W. corner of Lot 6, subdivision Lot 487. Scions from Kew Botanical Gardens, England, top grafted on Craig Filbert stocks 10 feet from ground line. Made very good union. Present circumference four inches below union is 7-3/4 inches, and four inches above union is 8 inches.

The bark on this graft is similar to the Craig on which it is growing but lighter in color. There is no winter injury in evidence at this date except a very much lighter crop than usual. Has small, oval, light-colored nut of good flavor and color—clean kernels.

Corylus colurna (Thin Bark) Turkish Tree Hazel, also Cork Bark

Tree No. 4. Source of Scions—Oregon, U.S.A. Top graft on Craig stock six feet above ground. This Craig filbert clump has several divisions. Main one now six inches above ground. Has a circumference of 20 inches, and just above this branches into four main limbs of similar size, which at a height of six feet were grafted—two to the thin bark above, and two to the cork bark type. The thin bark type have made very compatible unions—well healed over. The circumference four inches below the graft is now 9-1/2 inches and at similar distance above is now 10 inches. July, 1950:—These are bearing a few nuts, following a winter temperature of-24 deg. F. Although the two branches worked to the cork bark type have no crop this season, they have over-grown graft unions, and the tops are oversize for stocks. Circumference four inches below union is now 7 inches, and at same distance above is 9 inches. Both these types have thick shelled roundish nuts which are hard to get out of the husks, and so far have many blank nuts. India tree hazels also contain many blanks and are very difficult to separate from the husks. Trees are all hardy and vigorous.

Best of 25 seedling C. colurna (cork bark tree hazels). Circumference twelve inches above ground line is 31 inches, and at six feet above ground is 25 inches. Height about forty feet. On August 3, 1950, I climbed thirty feet into upper branches to see if there was any crop, but none was to be seen, but heavy crop of catkins was developing for 1951. I have many hybrids from all of these tree hazels and filberts, nearing the bearing age, and they give interesting promise of new strains, as all sorts of crossing are evident.

Tibet Hazel (C. tibicia)

Vigorous grower, upright, good cropper, fair size round nuts. Clean kernels, nut clusters, 4 to 6 nuts in open medium husks. Nuts fall free. These clusters differ from usual run of filberts or hazels in that each husk is separate on short neck from center of cluster.

Timber Type Tree Chinese Chestnut (Castanea mollissima)

Seed secured direct from China. All select large nuts. So far, only a very few produce trees that yield nuts of as large size as those planted. All that have are timber type trees. All the bush or dwarf spreading type trees yield small to medium-sized nuts, all of good quality and flavor. (Selection to 1950 date referred to.)

One Chinese Chestnut Selection Named

Skioka. Most promising timber type to date of this group of seedlings. Has one straight trunk 38 feet tall, base circumference 1 foot above ground, is 22 inches; and 6 feet above ground line circumference is 15 inches. To date, tree is sparse cropper. Started bearing in 1945, with three very large sized nuts in large fleshy burs. It has borne every year since, with gradual increase in number. In 1949 it matured 12 large nuts of 1-5/8 inch diameter. A good peeler and solid kernel. I have four other trees of similar size and all winter hardy this past winter, at 24 deg. below. Skioka is the most promising to date of the four as to size of nut.

Bush or Peach Tree Type of C. mollissima

Of this type I have about 30 trees. Many seem 100% hardy and came through in good shape. However, for some years they, with the tree type, seemed to be having trouble with some soil deficiency or else some excess of soil salts which caused a lot of leaf fading, followed by browning and drying up. Some trees almost defoliate themselves, while others nearby and alongside are O.K., possibly due to individual tolerance of conditions.

* * * * *

DR. MacDANIELS: The first paper after recess has to do with the varieties of hickory nuts. I know of no one who is in a better position to talk on this subject on their performance here in this part of New York State than Gilbert L. Smith of Millerton. He began a number of years ago topworking trees on a hillside and propagating trees as a nurseryman and probably is, as far as I know, one of the best men in nut shade trees and hickory varieties that there is anywhere in the country. Mr. Gilbert Smith.

MR. SMITH: I am no good at making a speech, so I am just going to read this. This is our experience with hickory varieties so far. That's just up to date, but not any further.

Our Experience with Hickory Nut Varieties

GILBERT L. SMITH, Route 2, Millerton, N. Y.

Because we are located so far north, 41 deg. 45' North Latitude, we have paid particular attention to the earliness of ripening of the various varieties of hickory.

While we have living grafts of more than a hundred named varieties of hickory, only a comparative few have started to bear nuts. Of these, I will give a brief discussion, starting with the earliest and going through the list in order of their ripening.

ANTHONY, shagbark—We believe that this is Anthony No. 1 but as there are four or five varieties named Anthony with a number following the name, we are not absolutely sure. This variety has ripened very early with us. It is rather small but cracks very well and has borne well with us. We consider it to be an excellent variety.

WESCHCKE, shagbark—Is our second earliest variety so far. It is also rather small, with a distinctive shape, tapering from a rather broad blossom end to a sharp point at the stem end. Our graft has had one very good crop, but it is younger than many of our other grafts. We consider it a very good variety.

CROWN POINT, shagbark—Is our third variety in order of ripening. This is a rather small nut with some of them being very small; that is, there is quite a variation in the size of the nuts. It cracks quite well and is of very good quality. It has also borne as well or better than any other variety we have under test. We have never propagated it for sale as we have hardly thought it quite good enough.

In fourth place of ripening order, we have four ties, namely; Bauer, Cedar Rapids, Hines, and Independence.

BAUER, shagbark—Has borne well, is of good size, good quality and cracks well. It is also a very good shaped nut. We consider it to be one of the very good hickories.

CEDAR RAPIDS, shagbark—While our graft of this variety has borne but moderately, we consider it to be a very good variety. It is of good size, cracks well, is of good quality and attractive shape.

HINES, shagbark—While our graft of this variety has borne well, cracks well and is of good quality, it is so small that we have never propagated it for sale.

INDEPENDENCE, shagbark—The nuts of this variety are so small that we have paid little attention to it.

FOX, shagbark—This variety is in fifth place in order of ripening.

Fox won first prize in the 1934 N.N.G.A. contest. But there is a deep mystery connected with this variety as subsequent crops, grown on grafts, have not produced nuts of such top qualities. There have been many theories advanced but no one has solved the mystery yet. One theory is that there is bud variation in the parent tree and that Mr. Fox, quite naturally, cut scion wood from the lower parts of the tree, which were most readily accessible. During the war, I secured a special allotment of gasoline and made the trip to Fonda, N. Y., to cut scions from all parts of the tree. The scions from the various parts of the tree were labeled separately and were grafted on stocks in our test orchard. While not all of these grafts lived, we have living grafts from nearly all parts of the tree. I note that at least one of these grafts has nuts on it this year. If there is bud variation we hope that we will have at least some grafts of the superior Fox nuts.

In spite of all this, Fox is an excellent variety, being of good size, cracks well, and is of very good quality. While it is fifth in order of ripening, it is still an early hickory and will succeed considerably farther north than our location.

In sixth place we have two varieties, namely; Clark and Stocking.

CLARK, shagbark—Our graft of this variety has borne well, the nuts being of good size, crack well and are of good quality. We consider it to be a very good variety.

STOCKING, shagbark x bitternut—While our graft has grown very well, it has produced but very few nuts. We were not very greatly impressed with these.

In seventh place in order of ripening, we have two varieties, Camp No. 2 and Stratford.

CAMP NO. 2, shagbark—We did not find this variety good enough to interest us very much. Subsequent crops may show up better.

STRATFORD, not sure whether shagbark or hybrid[29]—Our Stratford graft has been poorly tended and has had little chance to show its merits. So while it has an excellent reputation, we know very little about it. However we have several good sized grafts of it, growing in nursery row, which have several nuts on this year, so we will find out more about it soon.

[29] It is a bitternut hybrid.—Ed.

In eighth place we have three varieties; Proper, Shaul, and Wilcox. While being in eighth place, these are still medium early varieties.

PROPER, shagbark—This is a little known variety, our graft is rather young and we have had too few nuts to form any opinion of this variety as yet.

SHAUL, shagbark—While this is a very good nut, being of good size, cracks well and of good quality, our graft on shagbark stock has grown slowly and it is the one variety so far that we have found will not do well on our bitternut stocks.

WILCOX, shagbark—So far this is our favorite variety. The graft has grown into a fine tree and has borne good crops of nuts which are of good size, crack almost perfectly and are of very good quality.

MINNIE, shagbark—While we have not had a crop of this variety since starting to keep a ripening record, it ripens about the same time as Wilcox and is a very good variety.

Ninth on our list we have two varieties; Davis and Peck Hybrid. It so happens that I discovered both of these varieties.

DAVIS, shagbark—First prize winner in the New York and New England Contest of 1934. Incidentally, a sample of Fox nuts was awarded tenth place in this same contest. You will note that this was the same year in which Fox won first place in the N.N.G.A.

Davis has pretty well lived up to expectations. Grafts of this variety are rapid growers. It is the only variety we have ever succeeded in making live on pignut stocks. While the grafts are slower growing on pignut stocks, they have lived for several years and have borne nuts. But as the squirrels have stolen all of the nuts, we do not know how they compare with the nuts grown on other stocks.

Our grafts of Davis have borne well, the nuts are of good size and crack well, although not as well as those of Wilcox. It is also of very good quality. We consider it to be a top rate nut.

PECK HYBRID, shagbark x bitternut—The nuts of this variety are large, thin shelled, crack well and are of good quality. It also bears well. The drawback is that only about one third to one half of the nuts are well filled. I can take freshly shucked nuts of this variety and by placing them in water can pick out a sample of nuts that are just about as good hickory nuts as you can find anywhere, but these will be only about one third of the nuts involved. For this reason we have never propagated it for sale.

In tenth place we have three varieties; Berger, Strever, and Triplett.

BERGER, shellbark—While this variety is quite small for a shellbark, it is quite large when compared with the shagbarks. Our graft of the Berger has borne fairly well, cracks well and is of very good quality. Incidentally our graft is the true Berger. There was some mix-up with the Berger wood, and some who thought they had Berger found that they had something else when their trees started to bear.

STREVER, shagbark—The original tree of this variety is growing near Pine Plains here in Dutchess County, on the Old Strever Homestead. This property was later sold to people named Owre, who tried to have the variety named after them. I believe that Strever is the more proper name.

While this variety is of good size and quality, it has not cracked quite well enough to rate it as a top flight hickory.

TRIPLETT, shagbark—This is a large shagbark which cracks well and is of good quality. Our graft bears well. I believe that it was discovered by Dr. Deming and the late Mr. Beeman. This is a variety which can well bear considerable attention in the future. We are propagating some of the trees for sale.

In eleventh place we have nine varieties, namely: Bridgewater, Griffin, Hagen, Harman, Kirtland, Lingenfelter, Manahan, Oliver, and Wampler.

BRIDGEWATER, shagbark—A large fine variety, cracks well, yields well and is of good quality. This is another discovery of Dr. Deming's and Mr. Beeman's. We have started to propagate it for sale.

GRIFFIN, shagbark—I have mislaid my comments on this variety and cannot remember much about it, except that it is of good size and bears well.

HAGEN, shagbark—We have not had enough nuts of this variety to enable us to form an opinion of it.

HARMAN, shagbark—A large nut. We did not think much of our first crop of this variety but the second crop was very good.

KIRTLAND, shagbark—This is a fine large nut, but with the one good crop, we have had, only about half of the nuts were well filled. The other half were floaters, only partly filled.

LINGENFELTER, shagbark—Here again we have had too few nuts to enable us to form an opinion. Mr. Reed thought very well of it.

MANAHAN, shagbark—This nut is of southern origin and I fear that we are too far north for it. However we have had one crop that was very good. All other crops have not been matured. It is evidentally a very good nut where it can be grown.

OLIVER, shagbark—Too few nuts to form an opinion.

WAMPLER, shellbark—Too few nuts to form an opinion.

In twelfth place on our list, in order of ripening, we have Bowman and Redcay. These are both shellbarks and the nuts have not been well filled, as borne on our grafts.

In last place on our list, we have a southern shagbark, Booth, and two hicans, Bixby and Burlington. We have not been able to form an opinion of Booth. Bixby and Burlington have, so far, been very shy bearers and the nuts have not been well filled. They are of very large size and very excellent quality.

The time elapsed between the earliest and latest ripening of these different hickory varieties was 36 days. The time between the different steps were about three days. I do not give the dates because they will vary from year to year. In early years, Anthony has been ripe very early in September.

Summarizing this report shows that our tests so far indicate that the following varieties are good and well worthy of propagation: Anthony (probably No. 1), Weschcke, Bauer, Cedar Rapids, Fox, Clark, Wilcox, Minnie, Davis, Berger, Triplett, Bridgewater, Manahan (farther south). Instead of listing these 13 varieties alphabetically or in order of their merits, I have listed them in order of their ripening, earliest first, and so on. Those varieties in the first half of the list can be grown in locations considerably farther north than our location, which is 41 deg. 45' North Latitude, while those in the last half of the list are not likely to be adapted to locations farther north than ours.

You will note that five of these varieties are not well known, but are good varieties. They are, namely; Bauer, Cedar Rapids, Clark, Triplett, and Bridgewater.[30]

[30] The Bridgewater pollenizes the male-sterile Weschcke variety in Wisconsin. See Mr. Weschcke's discussion, pp. 193-95 in NNGA Report for 1948.—Ed.

This is only a preliminary or progress report, and should not be taken as final in any respect. Neither does it cover all or near all, of the top-rate hickory varieties. For instance, you will note, the variety named Glover has not been mentioned. This is because our grafts of it have not started to bear yet, so we have no comparable basis for including it in this report. Yet there can be no question as to the merits of Glover, for it is one of the very best. There are, no doubt, many other very excellent varieties not mentioned here.

The hickory is the slowest growing, takes the longest to start to bear, is the nurseryman's headache (it taking about five years to grow stocks large enough to graft or bud, during which time they should have been transplanted at least twice to develop a better root system), they are about (the hardest of the nut species to transplant and their nuts are one of the smallest of the nut species only the filbert and the chestnut being as small). Yet because of their delicious flavor and other good qualities, hickories are probably the favorite nut of more people than any other of the nut species that can be grown in the northern part of this country.


DR. MacDANIELS: I think we need more reports of that kind to get us oriented with our hickory varieties. I think when we get through with the walnut survey that the hickory nut survey would be next.

MR. CORSAN: Hickory was Dr. Charles S. Sargent's favorite tree, and he planted poison ivy under all of them, and it's there yet and they can't get rid of it. He wanted to keep the boys from gathering the nuts.

DR. MacDANIELS: I have poison ivy under some of mine, but not for that purpose.

MR. McDANIEL: It grows under all good trees.

DR. MacDANIELS: The next paper is one which George Slate kind of foisted off on me. He came around and said he thought something more should be said about the butternut and asked if I would get out a report and discuss the standards for evaluation. That is the reason for this paper, which I will read. It will take only about ten minutes.

How About the Butternut?

DR. L. H. MacDANIELS, Ithaca, New York

The purpose in presenting this paper is to summarize what is known about the butternut in the light of my own experience, and to find out from you in discussion what additional facts are available and what some of the problems in the culture of butternuts may be. A good summary by S. H. Graham is to be found in the 34th Annual report of the Northern Nut Growers Association, and short reports appear elsewhere. In general, however, judging from the proceedings of this Association, the butternut has not received much attention through the years. The lack of interest in the butternut indicates unsatisfactory experience with this nut on the part of those who have tried to grow and use it. An analysis of its good and bad characteristics is in order.

Of all the species of nuts with which the Association is concerned, the butternut is the most hardy and the most likely to succeed on poor soil. In general, the trees are easy to transplant, are early bearing, sometimes within two years from the graft, and are easy to grow. The flavor of the butternut is very distinctive and palatable, and usually much more flavorful than similar nuts derived from the Japanese butternut and the heartnut. Some people consider the butternut flavor the best of all nuts.

On the other hand, the butternut has a reputation for being short lived because of susceptibility to various diseases. The seedling trees which are usually sold are slow in bearing. The common wild nuts are hard to crack with a hammer, and the better named varieties are not well known or widely grown. The trees also have a reputation for being difficult to propagate. Of these faults, probably the difficulty of propagation and cracking are the most important in restricting its use.

Botanically the butternut (Juglans cinerea) belongs to a group of species within the genus Juglans that bears its fruit in long clusters or racemes, as contrasted with the walnut group which bears nuts singly or in clusters of two or three. The butternuts also have the fruit and leaves covered with sticky hairs instead of being smooth. The group is further characterized by having a cushion of hairs above the leaf scars and pointed terminal buds on the twigs. Other species within the group are the Japanese butternut J. Sieboldiana, its variety cordiformis, the heartnut, and several less well known species including J. mandshurica and J. cathayensis, both native to central Asia. These closely related species apparently hybridize with each other, but accurate information as to the nature and extent of such hybridization is not available.

The natural geographical range of the butternut covers a broad area of Northeastern North America, extending from New Brunswick southward to the mountains of Georgia and westward to Western Ontario, Dakota, and Arkansas. In this range it is most frequent in calcareous soils, reaching its best development in rich woodland, but persisting on poorer upland soils also. It thus has the most northern range of our native nut species, along with the Pignut, Carya glabra, and one species of hazelnut, Corylus rostrata. The other related species are of variable and uncertain hardiness and are not reliable in this northern range.

It is recognized that the butternut has little commercial value except as it is used in the New England states, particularly in Vermont, where it is combined with maple sugar in making maple-butternut candy. Anyone who has travelled through the New England states is familiar with the roadside advertising of this excellent product. On the general market, butternut kernels are not sold in quantity comparable to those of the black walnut, but are somewhat comparable to the kernels of the hickory which also do not have a commercial outlet except locally.

The greatest use of the butternut is, and will continue to be, for the home grounds and local consumption. I think it is highly probable that if the easy cracking varieties already named were better known, they would be much more widely planted. The common wild butternuts are really difficult to handle. They crack only after considerable hammering with a heavy hammer and then, when cracked, the kernels shatter to such an extent that recovery is very unsatisfactory for the labor expended. After butternuts have been gathered from the wild with some enthusiasm during the fall months, they often remain in the cellar or attic without ever being used. Even the squirrels and the rats will not go to the bother of extracting the kernels if other nuts are available.

For best results the nuts are usually cracked with a heavy hammer, the nut being held vertically against a solid vice or block, so it can be hit on the end. A glove to protect the fingers holding the nut is useful if many are to be cracked. Good results can be secured by holding the nut on its side and tapping it on the suture. This, however is difficult, as it necessitates shucking the nut and even then it is difficult to identify the suture.

Through the years many varieties of butternut have been named. Mr. R. L. Watts in the 35th annual report of the Association lists 26 names, and I am sure there are others. I personally have had experience with only three or four varieties. One of these, the Crax-ezy, has borne good crops and the nuts crack well. Another one, which I have named the Johnson, coming from Tonawanda, New York, cracks well but is a smaller nut. At one time I had Thill variety topworked on Juglans Sieboldiana stock, but the stock was killed by cold winter. Samples of Kinnyglen and Mandeville were furnished by Mr. Graham for testing. We do not, however, have any comparative rating of many varieties based on comparative tests, nor are there recognized standards of quality.

In order to set up standards of quality for butternuts, the following tentative schedule for judging has been worked out along the same lines as the schedule for judging black walnuts. Twenty-five nuts are used in a sample and the score is made up of the weight in grams of the kernels recovered on the first crack, plus total weight of kernels divided by 2, plus 1/2 point for each whole half kernel recovered. A nut should not be considered worthy of propagation unless practically all of the kernels come out in whole halves.

Proposed Schedule For Testing Butternuts

25 Nut Samples

Score = Wt. kernels first crack + total wt. kernels / 2 + no. whole halves / 2.

Weight Total Kernels Weight 1st crack Kernels No. Variety Grams Grams Halves Score Remarks

Kinnyglen 52.0 57.5 36 98.8 Crax-ezy 48.0 56.0 44 98.0 Mandeville 53.6 66.0 10 91.6 Johnson 38.5 45.5 40 81.3 Seedling No. 1 36.5 45.0 7 62.5 Seedling No. 2 26.0 43.0 22 58.5 Seedling No. 3 20.0 44.5 10 47.3

In this schedule the crackability of the sample is measured by the weight of first crack and the number of halves. The yield of kernels is measured by the total weight of kernels in the sample. The first crack includes only those kernels that either fall out or can be removed easily with the fingers. The remaining kernels are rescued with a pick or by recracking. In my judgment, the score accurately measures the merit of the samples. In the Mandeville, the large size is measured by the weight of kernels which in part offsets poor cracking quality. Poor cracking is usually caused by the edges of the halves being curved so as to be bound in the shell. Much more testing should be done to determine the value of the schedule.

Opinions regarding the ease of propagation of the butternut differ, but mostly it is considered difficult to propagate, with often complete failure. This merely means that the matter is not well understood. In my own experience I have had just about as many failures as successes, and must confess that I do not have much idea of what has been responsible for either success or failure. Best results have been secured by using inlay or bark slot grafts on stubs about 2 inches in diameter. This agrees with the experience of Mr. Burgart, of Michigan, and Mr. Weshcke, of Minnesota, who report that grafts must be made several feet from the ground and not at the crown.

Shield budding has apparently not been satisfactory. Mr. D. C. Snyder writes that chip budding is more successful. It is recommended by others and I agree that grafting should be done early, just as growth starts rather than later when trees are in leaf. Special care must be used in tying the new shoots of the graft to braces to prevent breakage by wind or birds. The butternut wood is very brittle and the grafts are often lost by breakage. The whole matter of butternut propagation merits further careful study.

Butternut varieties may be grafted on black walnut, butternut, or J. Sieboldiana stocks. Mr. Burgart, Mr. Weschcke, and Mr. D. C. Snyder consider black walnut to be better than the others, giving a more vigorous long lived tree. Varieties on butternut stocks are apparently relatively short lived and J. Sieboldiana stocks have a different growth rate and are not hardy. Mr. Burgart uses bark slot grafts on black walnut seedling stocks, 2-3 years old.

Butternut trees on their own roots transplant relatively easily because there is no taproot as with the black walnut and the hickory, and there are many fibrous surface roots that can be lifted when the tree is dug. Black walnut stocks are not difficult to manage, particularly if the taproots are cut on the seedlings. Culture is no special problem. Mulching and supplying nitrogenous fertilizer is good practice.

The butternut has the reputation of being susceptible to disease and hence being short lived as a tree. Whether or not this is actually the case is perhaps questionable. Many butternut trees, particularly those in favorable situations of soil and moisture, live to be of large size and old age. Trees on poorer, thinner soils apparently die off earlier than those under better conditions. In any case, it is well recognized that the butternut has a shorter life span on the average than the black walnut, which frequently lives to a large size and old age. There are two common diseases of the butternut. One is leaf spot caused by the fungus Marsonia, which defoliates the trees fairly early in the season and probably predisposes them to injury from other fungous attack. This is the same leaf spot that attacks the black walnut leaves. The other disease, which may cause trouble, is a fungous walnut blight known more specifically as Melanconis blight. It has not been established that this disease is an active parasite. The evidence indicates rather that it attacks trees that are already somewhat weakened by defoliation or other injury. It is a fact that many of the dead limbs on butternut trees are found to be affected with the disease. It is a matter of observation that trees growing under favorable conditions are less damaged by the disease than those growing under poor conditions of soil and water, therefore, keeping trees vigorous is good practice.

As with other nut tree species, there are troublesome insects. One of these, the butternut snout beetle or curculio, attacks both the butternut and the Japanese walnut. Control has apparently been secured by dusting foliage with DDT. Sometimes the leaves of butternuts are badly distorted with galls caused by mites. The bunchy top or witches'-broom caused by a virus, that is serious on the Japanese walnut, Juglans Sieboldiana, does not appear to be so virulent on butternut. This, however, is a matter of personal observation and is not based on a thorough study.

In conclusion, let me say that in my judgment, the butternut is worthy of more attention than it has had so far received, particularly by home owners in the northern states who would like to have trees in their yards that will bear nuts under conditions that are unfavorable for most other kinds. If it were publicized that varieties are available that will crack out in halves with relatively little effort, the chances are that with these facts in mind those interested in nut trees would give the butternut much more attention. The difficulty at the present time seems to be related to a lack of knowledge as to the relative merit of different varieties and a scarcity of trees because of difficulty of propagation. If we have time and the chairman will permit, I would welcome comments on the propagation problem and would also like to obtain any information on the merit of the named varieties. Let me also state that if any of you have a sample of 30 nuts of any named variety in this or last fall's crop that you can spare, I would be much pleased to have you send it to me for testing.


MR. STOKE: It grows in New Brunswick, and I have had specimens from north of Lake of the Woods.

MR. CORSAN: They grow at Brooks, Alberta. I have the Helmick and it grows 14 to the cluster, has a thin shell and heavy meat, and the leaves are persistent. They don't drop off the first of September. That's the Helmick. It's grafted on black walnut stock, and the black walnut stock comes up like that (indicating) and the Helmick recedes.

DR. MacDANIELS: The black walnut overgrows it. There are about 40 varieties, and I would like very much to get hold of any of the samples I can get.

MR. CORSAN: Go up to Silver Bay, Lake George, and on the shore there the Indians have bred the butternut, and it's 10 to the cluster among those trees by Silver Bay, Lake George, New York. Ernest Thompson Seaton and I examined that grove years ago.

DR. MacDANIELS: Wish we had them where we could get at them. Any other comment on the butternut?

MR. McDANIEL: The Helmick is considered to be a "butter-jap" seedling of heartnut, possibly the other parent was a butternut.

DR. MacDANIELS: That is something we will have to decide in the Association, whether or not we are going to throw in these hybrids and the heartnut along with the butternuts in standards or try to keep them separate.

MR. CORSAN: Hybrid heartnut cross is very, very superior in every way to the butternut in my estimation, except for hardiness.

MR. STOKE: That is a hybrid. I have it. The Mitchell hybrid.

DR. MacDANIELS: The ordinary run of seedlings are not worth keeping, no question about that, and it's too much work to recover the kernels.

There are several announcements I'd like to make. One has to do with this hall. It is the American Legion hall, which they do not charge rent for. They do, however, and will expect some sort of a token of appreciation that will be fairly substantial. There is no provision for that in the budget, so any of you who are feeling a little mellow and flush, if you want to approach the treasurer with a contribution towards the use of this hall, that will be appreciated; otherwise, the matter will have to be settled out of the treasury as such.

MR. CORSAN: How about a dance in this hall?

DR. MacDANIELS: If we stay over, we might do something like that.

Then there is the other matter, and that is the prize for the proposed Carpathian walnut contest. There is no prize money available at the present time. If any of you wish to provide a first, second, or third prize, we might even tag it with your name, if that would be possible.

I think probably they will be able to get some publicity backing through farm papers and what not, but still if we have a backlog of prize money, why, that's much to your advantage.

Do you want to say anything further on that, Mr. Chase?

MR. McDANIEL: Mr. Sherman, I believe, has a word.

MR. SHERMAN: Not in this connection.

MR. PATAKY: Do any of the members here have shelled butternuts or hickory nuts that they would sell? If they do, I'd like to get their names and get in touch with them. I do have a demand for some shelled butternuts which I have trouble getting, and I do have trouble getting shelled hickory nuts. It is for the Wideman Company out of Cleveland. I got shelled butternuts before the war, but since the war they don't have the trade, but if they could get them, I think that would be the company that would take them. The Wideman Company of Cleveland, Ohio. They are a big wholesale house. Write to Christ Pataky, Mansfield, Ohio, R.D. 4.

MR. KINTZEL: Do you sell them in the shell?

MR. PATAKY: I do sell them in the shell, too, but there are a lot of people who won't buy them in the shell. We do have a demand for them, not too much on the butternut, but we do have for hickory nuts. I think we could sell a lot more hickory nut meats than hickory nuts even at the difference of the price. I know the price was quite high before the war. They paid somewhere around a dollar a pound before the war for shelled ones, and we even sold them at a profit for that, and we haven't been able to get any since the war. I don't know what happened, whether the kids are too busy playing basketball or football.

DR. MacDANIELS: They get too much for mowing lawns.

MR. WEBER: There is a nut crackery at Mitchell, Indiana. The man who cracks them cracks hickory nuts and puts them out in his name, John Eversol. Mr. Wilkinson can tell you exactly what his name is. He was down there last year. He is cracking walnuts, and in addition cracks hickory nuts and puts them in fine shape.

MR. CORSAN: Isn't it true that nuts have more Vitamin E than any other food in the world, and isn't Vitamin E the greatest antidote against anemia?

DR. MacDANIELS: I wouldn't know. You have a medical man here?

DR. WASHICK: I don't think you are right.

MR. CORSAN: In the West they say Vitamin E is a cure for anemia and they are having wonderful success, and they claim there is more vitamin E in nuts than any other food. I don't know, they are keeping me alive.

Editor's Note: Green walnuts are rich in Vitamin C. See 1942 Report, page 95.

DR. MacDANIELS: You are Exhibit 1.

I think Mr. Salzer has slides he wanted to show this afternoon.

MR. SALZER: I had a few. Perhaps we can use those blankets and just fix up, perhaps, a few of these windows in front, and I think we could probably show the slides.

DR. MacDANIELS: If you can leave the blankets here for a short time, we will get them later.

Any other questions?

I think our lunch is ready for us downstairs. We will come back up here at one o'clock.

(Whereupon, at 11:50 o'clock, a. m., the meeting was recessed, to reconvene at 1 o'clock of the same day.)


DR. MacDANIELS: Calling the afternoon session to order.

This afternoon I am going to turn the gavel over to our good friend, Spencer Chase, to carry on.

MR. CHASE: Thank you, thank you.

All of us are interested in the various experiment stations doing more work with nut trees, and we are very fortunate this afternoon in having two experiment stations represented, and we will first hear from Bill Clarke from Penn State, who will talk on, "Progress in nut culture at the Pennsylvania State College." Mr. Clark.

Progress in Nut Culture at the Pennsylvania State College

W. S. CLARKE, JR., State College, Pennsylvania

Work in nut growing at the Pennsylvania State College was formally begun in 1946, when a project on this subject was approved by the college authorities. A few acres of land were set aside for this work, and the following spring about half an acre was planted with a few nut trees of different species. At the present time an area of about twenty acres is set aside for nut plantings, although a few spots on this land are not plantable on account of rock outcrops.

We now have out in the field sixty black walnuts, all but three of them named varieties, which were received from Tennessee in 1949. Seventeen varieties are represented in this collection.

In the nursery are more than 200 seedling black walnuts. These were planted from nuts gathered from local trees in the fall of 1946. They were transplanted at the end of their first season and have remained in their present position for three years. They were planted largely for the sake of experience in handling the nuts and the young trees. Some of them have been grafted, and this year a few grafts of Thomas and Stabler were successful. On account of their size, all these trees will have to be taken out at the end of the present growing season.

About twenty Persian walnuts have been received from the United States Department of Agriculture. These are all budded trees, the buds having been taken from special selections with the best nuts from trees originally introduced from northern Europe and central Asia. Three out of four seedling Persian walnuts and one out of two Japanese walnuts planted in 1947 have survived and are included in our planting. One named variety of butternut is in our collection, and a number of seedlings in our nursery.

It has been our experience that walnut trees can be moved rather easily. The percentage of loss in transplanting has been negligible. On account of an emergency, this spring we had to move several walnuts which were already in full leaf. Some of the leaves were trimmed off, and the trees have survived and have even made some additional growth.

On our grounds is one Chinese chestnut left from a planting of eight in 1930. It was killed back to the ground in 1934 after winter temperatures of close to 30 degrees below zero, but it has since grown up to be a tree of moderate size. It suffered considerable injury to buds and twigs in 1948 from temperatures down to 23 degrees below zero, but has since recovered. In several years it has borne a crop of burs, but no other tree is available for cross-pollination, and the nuts have seldom filled.

Twelve seedling Chinese chestnut trees from different sources have been planted, and an area of several acres has been set aside to extend the work on chestnuts.

A start has been made toward a collection of filberts. Five named varieties of European filberts were planted in 1947. All have suffered from winter injury, but only one tree has been killed outright. Very few nuts have been produced. About 25 seedlings of European filberts and 25 of the American were received from Tennessee two years ago. About 90% have survived and are growing nicely.

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