Last summer about one-half dozen of the pecan trees which I had been playing around with for twenty years, started to blossom but only had staminate bloom, There might possibly be a crop of pecans this coming year—I do not have any hopes that any of these seedlings will be able to mature their nuts, but there is always a possibility and they are certainly hardy. None of them that I have tried to graft will live on bitternut roots.
Chestnuts are difficult to get started but once they are started they grow very well although there are only a few surviving out of many thousands of seeds planted. Every year one or more comes into bearing—they generally do not mature their nuts, and what I have tasted of them are not anything to brag about except that they are sweet; the size is insignificant and they evidently have much of the native chestnut blood. I am still testing such varieties as the Carr, Zimmerman, and Connecticut Yankee. So far these have shown themselves to be quite tender varieties. I do not consider the chestnut worthwhile because of the constant threat that if a grove should be started it might soon have the blight in it.
I have several Chinese chestnut seedlings which are making a fairly good growth and in time may become productive trees.
We have one hybrid white oak which has an edible kernel but out of about one hundred nuts you might get one wholesome one free from weevils. The tree is very old and is rapidly declining. The nut is small but the tree is quite prolific. I merely mention it to show that there are possibilities in developing the oak. I think our mutual friend, J. Russell Smith, would probably like to hear this as he advocates the use of oaks, and I agree with him that there are possibilities for human food to be used first-hand. I am all out of sympathy with second-hand food production as pork or beef or any meat products, as you know. One reason is that it is economically wrong as it takes many times more acreage to produce meat than vegetables for the same amount of food energy to be derived. My authority, the Encyclopedia Brittanica, which says it takes 64 pounds of dry fodder to produce 1 pound of dry beef, and 32 pounds of dry fodder to produce 1 pound of dry mutton, etc., etc.
Be Thrifty with Nut Trees
By CARL WESCHCKE, Minnesota
There has been too much accent put on the profit to be made on nut production. No matter how much income a man may receive, if he has not learned to save out of that income he will never be better off for having received it. Now, nut trees offer a particularly practical way of saving out of income. If one has a large family to feed the saving may amount to a hundred dollars or more a year. When this fine food, contained in the kernels of nuts, is used right in your own family, and supplies the family's entire requirements of nuts, you will find that you have made very substantial savings in your family food budget.
First of all, it is different from income from the sale of nuts because when you sell nuts they must be sold in the competitive market, and usually to the wholesaler if you have a considerable amount to dispose of. Therefore you save the profit made by the wholesaler and the retailer by using your nut crop rather than selling it. This is really being thrifty. If you have a large crop of nuts you will find that you can easily increase the uses in combination with other foods so that less other food has to be purchased in order to meet the family needs. And with the higher prices of ordinary foods you can easily visualize what a tremendous saving this might be.
Nuts are a fine luxury food, but in a way they can quickly become a necessary food by being used as a replacement for meat. I don't like to use the term "substitute for meat" as it implies that nuts are inferior to meat, and nothing could be further from the truth. Nuts are more NUTricious than any meat, pound for pound, and what meat can you store away that will keep as sweet and edible as a nut for so long a time!
Plant nut trees to save your income not to increase it. You will never have to pay a tax on that saving.
Report of Season 1943
By GEORGE HEBDEN, Corsan, Canada
The winter of 1942-43 was one of the coldest ever known here. One day it was 33 deg. below zero and another it was 38 deg. below. Filberts did not seem to take any notice of the severe cold and my Stranger Jap heartnuts that are said to be tender went through with flying colors. One or two varieties of Russian walnuts (J. regia) froze to the ground as did all the Pomeroys. Some of the Crath walnuts froze from a few inches to a yard, but the majority did not lose a bud. Strange to say all the extremely large varieties of J. regia came through unscathed as did my Chinese. Asiatic tree hazels missed cropping but came through unscathed. Winkler and Rush hazels were not harmed, though the Rush is a bit tender and succumbed the winter of 1933-34. In fact 1933-34 was a harder winter on trees than 1942-43 as that winter all but my Daviana filberts were hit more or less.
Last fall (1943) all trees went into their winter's sleep in most excellent condition and the twigs are hard to the top buds. Signs on twig terminals indicate a large crop of nuts for the fall of 1944. Thus I hope to be able to have on display for the convention-to-be a most interesting show. Besides nuts of all the hardy varieties I always have a real big show of hardy and tropical water lilies and lotus, a complete collection. Also a complete collection of grapes and many other horticultural curios rarely seen.
I was many years finding persimmons hardy enough to survive our winters, but at last I have at least 2 and maybe 3 varieties that passed last winter in perfect condition. I am north of Lake Ontario and just a mile west of Toronto. I doubt that northern pecans, big western shellbarks and hicans will have a long enough season to ripen. The Weiker hickory, which is a cross between shagbark (Carya ovata) and shellbark (C. laciniosa) hickories, ripens completely each season. Catawba grapes won't ripen except in a rather long summer. Just across the lake the golden muscatel grapes have ripened two or three times in my memory.
Barcelona and Kentish cob seem to be the only two filberts that are tender with me. Du Chilly and Italian red live and crop regularly. I have several very large new varieties of seedling filberts. I like to grow seedling filberts, they show wonderful variations in fruiting. The same with heartnuts. I never lose a seedling heartnut for if the tree yields an unsatisfactory nut I promptly bud it to a Stranger which is the most regular and heaviest cropping heartnut I know of. Yes, every year a monster crop of nuts whose meats come out whole.
Our hybrid Jap heartnut x native butternut crosses are of three types and all excellent and will hold their own with any nut that grows. No nut can beat our butternut for eating. But the shells are too thick, the trees crop only about every 4 years, are unhealthy and shed their leaves soon after September 1st. On the other hand, the hybrid outlooks it, outcrops it and outlives it and our friendly neighbor Russia is very greatly intrigued with these new nuts developed here at Echo Valley. They are thin-shelled, very easy to crack, meats come out easily, trees have a tropical look, crop early, grow fast and very large, leaves hang on green almost to November and the crop ripens early, just after the filberts which are the first nuts to ripen with me, while the Winkler hazels are the last, though the hybrid filbert-hazels are almost as late.
A very beautiful sight here are the many different nut trees growing on black walnut stock to be seen all over the 20 acres. They are heartnuts, Jap walnuts, hybrids, English walnuts and butternuts, as well as superior named black walnuts.
People don't want beautiful trees nearly as much as they do trees that grow nuts. For instance, they don't buy pecans from me, because though they are quite hardy and beautiful, yet the northern pecans don't mature their crop sufficiently in our short season. Down in extreme southwestern Ontario the pecan has cropped and ripened.
One mistake we must not make is not to be too sure of the value of a nut because it is large, thin-shelled and has a fine flavor but is a poor cropper. The nut that produces a very heavy crop is the valuable nut. Thus McAllister hican and the Stabler black are worthless because of their extremely thin crop.
Another nut that looks large and excellent on the tree is the Ohio black walnut, whose huge dirty hull and small nut condemns it. I like thin-hulled nuts that come out clean.
American Walnut Manufacturers Association Carries Out Industrial Forestry Program
By W. C. FINLEY, Forester
The forestry program now in operation is ambitious in scope, and has as its objectives the promotion of forest practices which will encourage growing and harvesting American Walnut as a permanent crop.
One of the greatest evils which we are attempting to eradicate is the cutting of small diameter trees. The Walnut Industry has expressed a desire to conserve small diameter fast growing walnut trees for future use and is advocating that farmers, timberland owners and log producers leave these trees in the woodlots to grow into high quality timber. We are trying to educate the farmer, timber owner and log producer in forestry practices which will serve not only their best interests, but which in the final analysis, will serve the lumber industry as a whole. Trees less than 14 inches d.b.h. if cut constitute a real loss in potential high quality and more valuable logs because the logs they produce are too small to be used advantageously. On the other hand, trees of 14 inch d. b. h. and up are in demand and are playing a patriotic role in furnishing material for use by the armed forces, namely gunstocks. The public in general, and tree farmers and timber owners in particular, must be made aware of the fact that while the present walnut timber supply is adequate, conservation of immature trees must be practiced to the full to assure the industry with sufficient raw materials for future use.
Success in this particular phase of our program is being enhanced greatly through the excellent cooperation of Extension Foresters, State Foresters, U. S. Forest Service, Timber Production War Project Foresters, Foresters of the Soil Conservation Service and Tennessee Valley Authority Foresters. These various agencies are working hand in hand with us on those objectives of our program which, in a measure, dovetail with various phases of their own programs. One of the most interesting aspects of our program is our work with 4-H Clubs. We are sponsoring a contest among those members who are interested in forestry. Each contestant is required to plant 25 seedlings, record certain data and write a story about his woodlot giving specific information. Two winners will be chosen from each county participating. Winners will be chosen on the basis of the best story submitted; judges will be 4-H officials and the Extension Forester from each state. The reward to be presented winners will be one week's vacation at 4-H Summer Camp with all expenses paid by the American Walnut Manufacturers Association. This contest is open to all 4-H Club members in the States of Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio and Tennessee.
In addition to this, the Association Forester will conduct a one day forestry program at the summer camps at which time he will present the winners with special certificates.
The program was planned by the Association's Forestry Committee, consisting of Chester B. Stem, C. B. Stem, Inc., New Albany, Indiana, Chairman; B. F. Swain, National Veneer and Lumber Company, Indianapolis, and Seymour, Indiana; Clarence A. Swords, Sword-Morton Veneer Company, Indianapolis, Indiana and Burdett Green, Secretary-Manager of the American Walnut Manufacturers Association, Chicago, Illinois. The committee worked in close cooperation with Harris Collingwood, Washington, D. C., Forester for the lumber industry. Of especial help were several of the Midwest's outstanding foresters from regional and state offices of the various governmental forestry agencies—men who have had years of woods experience in the areas where most of the Walnut Association's forestry activities will be carried on.
The Crath Carpathian Walnut in Illinois
By A. S. COLBY
The Persian walnut (Juglans regia), usually and incorrectly called the English walnut, has been highly prized both for the beauty of the tree and the quality of its nuts since ancient times. The species flourishes in Southern Asia and Europe and in our Southwestern and Pacific Coast States, but most of the attempts that have been made to fruit it in Northern and Eastern sections have failed. The varieties or strains tried there were for the most part native to sections of the Old World where the winters are comparatively mild and they were therefore not able to survive our colder and more changeable climate. The late E. A. Riehl, of Alton, Illinois, tried repeatedly to grow named varieties of this nut which are successful in California, but often stated that the species had no future in Illinois. In extreme southern Illinois, at Robert Endicott's place, in Villa Ridge, several Persian walnut trees are growing but their bearing habits are disappointing.
One of the most promising recent developments in Northern nut culture is the introduction into America of hardier strains of the Persian walnut, through the efforts of Rev. Paul C. Crath, of Toronto, Canada, a native of Poland, and whose father was the head of the Agricultural College in the Ukraine. He went back to his own country as a missionary in the early 1930's, and there noticed the hardiness of the Persian walnuts growing in that severe climate. Realizing the possibilities of these strains for fruiting in North America, he combed that rich Russian agricultural region in the Carpathian Mountains for seed for experimental planting over here, harvesting it from trees uninjured at temperatures of -40 deg. F. These parent trees were carefully selected for regular production of good crops of thin-shelled, easily-cracked nuts of good quality. The trees were growing at such distances from others that cross-pollination was avoided. Rev. Crath had observed that seedlings from such self-pollinated trees usually bore nuts that closely resembled those of the parent.
Each tree from which nuts were saved was given a number in order to keep future records straight. The nuts were planted in a nursery established by Rev. Crath near Toronto. Wishing some point in this country where his trees could be distributed without the difficulty and delay incurred in moving small shipments across the border, Rev. Crath arranged with Mr. Samuel H. Graham, of Ithaca, New York, to take sole charge of their distribution in the United States. Considerable interest has been aroused in the possibilities of these strains and their distribution has been wide-spread, with over 2,000 seedlings sent to many Northern States since 1937. In a few more years, after a considerable proportion of these numbered seedlings have come into bearing, we shall have some valuable information regarding their possibilities in sections of the country where previously it had not been considered possible to grow Persian walnuts.
Several Illinois horticulturists have planted seedlings of these strains and have already brought one or more of them into bearing. Others have used scion wood of the Crath types in top-working black walnut trees. The sample Crath Carpathian walnut No. 1 on display at the 1942 meeting of the Illinois Horticultural Society at Quincy was grown by Mr. Royal Oakes, of Bluffs, Illinois. Mr. Oakes topworked a black walnut with Crath Seedling No. 1 scions in 1938 and harvested six nuts in 1942. At the Illinois Agricultural Experiment Station at Urbana, we have over 20 Crath seedlings under number, planted in 1937 and 1939. They are all healthy and vigorous, and several bore pistillate flowers in 1942.
Comparatively little is known about the bearing habits of the Crath walnut strains. Several growers have noted that their trees began to bear pistillate flowers within a few years after planting but set no nuts. Evidently the staminate catkins necessary for pollen production are somewhat slower in appearing. Other strains of Persian walnuts are said to be slow in this regard, usually beginning to bear female flowers from 3 to 5 years before male flowers are produced. It is thought possible that Persian walnut pistils will accept black walnut pollen. Mr. Oakes reports that there were no staminate flowers on the Crath (from which he picked the nuts he exhibited at Quincy), but black walnut pollen was abundant nearby at that time and for good measure he also brought in butternut bouquets. As he states, "something worked."
The prospective planter should understand that these new walnut strains are as yet only in the experimental stage. It is believed that some of them have considerable promise, at least in the southern and the central, and possibly in the northern, parts of this state. However, they must be properly planted and cared for if one expects them to grow and bear. Too close planting should be avoided and some attention must be given to forming the head when the tree is young. No one knows exactly when they will bear, how much, and how long. In their native country, trees have been observed estimated to be over 300 years old. Most of us can expect to enjoy nuts from trees we plant, with more for our grandchildren and great-grandchildren. One might ask also in this connection, as does one nut nurseryman, "How soon will a Chinese elm or soft maple bear nuts?"
Ohio Nut Growers' Meeting
By G. J. KORN, BERRIEN SPRINGS, MICH.
A meeting of Ohio nut growers was held at the Wooster, Ohio, Experiment Station on September 5, 1943. A very pleasant and profitable afternoon was had in the exchange of ideas and reports on the growing of nut trees. Most of those present were members of the Northern Nut Growers' Association. As the annual meeting of that organization had been cancelled for the duration of the war, the Ohio members decided to hold a meeting of their own at Wooster. The growers presented reports on the varieties with which they are working and evaluated their merits and performance. As an example, Mr. A. A. Bungart of Avon, said he had spent a good share of his spare time for two summers in examination of several hundred native black walnut trees, and has never found a nut as good as the varieties Todd or Thomas. He still feels, however, that there are superior walnuts growing wild and that continued search for them is well warranted. Several other kinds of nut trees are being grown by Mr. Bungart, such as filberts, Chinese chestnuts, and Crath Persian walnuts. In a summary of his report he said, "In viewing the growing of nut trees, I am convinced that it is a wonderful hobby, and that the contributions of various individuals and groups will eventually establish nut growing in the northern states on a commercial basis."
Mr. Eugene Cranz of Ira also gave a very interesting report. This past summer Mr. Cranz passed his eighty-first birthday, and for many years has been keenly interested in general forestry practices. One of his particular interests is nut culture; a very superior hickory tree grows on his place, which bears a very high quality nut. During the course of his remarks, he expressed great optimism in the matter of developing the Chinese chestnut into a valuable commercial nut crop.
Mr. J. Lester Hawk & Son of Beach City, concurred in Mr. Cranz's opinion on this matter, and cited as an example the 2 Hobson Chinese chestnuts which they planted on their property in 1917. These two trees have been bearing crops of well-formed tasty nuts for a period of 20 years. Mr. Hawk reports that he had sold several hundred seedling trees from these trees last year, and reports that he has about 2,500 one-year seedling trees in his nursery at the present time.
Many other interesting reports were given on cultural practices and on the merits of various types of nut trees adaptable to northern conditions. Mention should be made of the especially fine illustrated talk given by L. Walter Sherman, superintendent of the Mahoning County Experiment Farm at Canfield. Colored slides were shown by Mr. Sherman, of his grafting technique and of individual trees throughout the state from which he has collected scions. Three acres of the Mahoning County Farm are being devoted to nut growing and research at the present time. This planting includes 21 different varieties of black walnut. Mr. Sherman is keeping an accurate record of the trees as they develop, their source of scions, and other items that may be of interest. Besides recording this data, he is also making color slides of his cultural methods and progressive stages of the trees' growth.
In spite of unavoidable interruptions to their individual efforts occasioned by the war, those in attendance expressed the belief that real progress is being made in this particular field. A committee was chosen to draft tentative plans for a 20-year research program on nut culture in Ohio. The great enthusiasm shown at this initial meeting indicates that a meeting of Ohio nut growers is likely to become an annual event.
On my return home to Michigan from attending the Ohio meeting, I stopped off near McCutchenville, Ohio, to visit the parent "Ohio" black walnut tree. The accompanying photos taken by Mr. O. D. Diller, Dept. of Forestry, Experiment Station, Wooster, Ohio, show the majesty and beauty of this great tree.
Walnut and Heartnut Varieties Notes and Remarks
By J. U. GELLATLY, Westbrook, B. C.
BARLEE BLACK WALNUT—1935 crop grown in Kelowna, B. C.—1 nut—44.0 per lb., 1 kernel—206.1 per lb., 21.36% kernel.
BROADVIEW NUTS—1941 crop, 5 nuts—29.5 per lb., 68.7 kernels per lb., 1 best kernel 64.8 per lb., 51.5 shells per lb., 42.85% kernel.
CALLANDER HEART NUT—20 Nuts—124.8 per lb., 20 kernels—392.7 kernels per lb.—31.8% kernel.
CANOKA HEART NUT—1941 crop—1 nut—79.6 per lb., 24-1/2% kernel, 105.5 shells per lb., 324.0 kernels per lb.
CANOKA HEART—1941 crop—5 nuts average—90.4 per lb., 123.3 shells per lb., 338.5 kernels per lb., 26.7% kernel.
CHINESE OR MANCHURIAN WALNUTS 1941 crop grown O. K. Valley—5 nuts—27.1 per lb., 5 kernels—62.0 per lb., 5 shells—48.1 per lb., 43.73% kernel. Kernels very fine flavour.
COGLAN WALNUT—from Coglan, B. C.—1 nut—47.7 per lb., 1 kernel—113.4 per lb., 1 shell—82.5 per lb., 42.1% kernel. A very good thin shell nut of Franquette type.
FRANQUETTE WALNUTS 1941 crop—outside dry storage or unheated shed. 5 nuts—30.0 per lb., 1 largest nut—26.4 per lb., kernel of this nut 78.2 per lb., 1 small kernel 141.75 per lb., 1 medium kernel—79.6 per lb., 5 kernels—94.1 per lb., 5 shells—45.3 per lb. 32.48% kernels. Kernels best of flavour.
GELLATLY HEART NUT—1939 crop—20 nuts—64.2 per lb., 252.0 kernels per lb., 25.5% kernel. Shell heavy—cracking only fair.
HEART NUT—from R. P. Wright, Erie, Pennsylvania, U. S. A.—1 nut—84.0 per lb., 266.8 kernels per lb., 122.6 shells per lb., 31.48% kernel.
IMPIT BLACK WALNUT—1941 crop—1 nut—25.2 per lb., 1 kernel—141.8 per lb., 17.78% kernel. 2 nuts—25.6 per lb.,—2 kernels—137.5 per lb., 18.64% kernel.
IMPIT BLACK WALNUT—1941 crop—10 nuts—25.2 per lb., 10 kernels—110.4 per lb., 28.8% kernel. Cracking time 12 minutes to crack with hammer.
MACKENZIE HEART NUT—20 nuts—48.3 per lb., 20 kernels—193.0 kernels per lb., 25% kernel—extracting and opening with knife—4 minutes.
NORTH STAR WALNUT—1941 crop grown in O. K. Valley—5 nuts—28.8 per lb., 5 kernels—76.9 per lb., 5 shells—46.1 per lb., 37.48% kernel.
NURSOKA HEART NUT—1940 crop grown at Peachland, B. C.—1 nut—72.0 per lb., 103.1 shells per lb., 238.7 kernels per lb., 30.2% kernel. Extracting time 6 minutes.
O. K. HEART NUT—1933 crop grown at Kelowna, B. C—20 nuts—103.1 per lb., 382.8 kernels per lb., 26.9% kernel. 3.5 minutes to open and extract with small penknife.
PENOKA HEART NUT—1939 crop—1 nut—96.5 per lb., 412.4 kernels per lb., 23.4% kernel.
ROVER HEART NUT—1941 crop—10 nuts, average—79.4 per lb., 98.6 shells per lb., 408.6 kernels per lb., 19.4% kernel.
ROVER HEART NUT—1939 crop—1 nut—96.6 per lb, 378.0 kernels per lb., 25.53% kernel.
ROVER HEART NUT—1935 crop—20 nuts—90.7 per lb., 302.4 kernels per lb., 30% kernel.
SMYTHE HEART NUT—5 nuts—95.7 per lb., 5 kernels—276.6 per lb., 34.6% kernel. Well sealed but easy to open.
SPREADOKA WALNUT "J. REGIA"—5 nuts—49.3 per lb., 5 kernels—105.0 per lb., 5 shells—92.95 per lb., 46.95% kernel.
THACKER HEART NUT—1942 crop—10 nuts—103.1 per lb., 324 kernels per lb., 31.8% kernel.
VAUX ENGLISH WALNUT—1940 crop—a new seedling on J. U. Gellatly's lot. Large nuts—heavy shell. 1 nut—36.3 per lb., 1 kernel—90.7 per lb., 69.8 shells per lb., 40% kernel.
WALSH WALNUTS—1941 crop grown in O. K. Valley—5 nuts 24.3 per lb., 5 kernels—57.7 per lb., 5 shells—42.2 per lb., 42.26% kernels. Kernels bland flavour.
WALTERS HEART NUT—1934 crop—20 nuts—47.2 per lb., 180.4 kernels per lb., 26.2% kernel. 13 minutes to open and extract with penknife.
WALTERS HEART NUT—1940 crop—1 nut—58.2 per lb., 226.8 kernels per lb., 78.2 shells per. lb., 25.64% kernel.
NO. E. 16—From Ross Pier Wright—235 West 6th St., Erie, Pennsylvania, U. S. A. 1 nut—61.3 per lb., 232.6 kernels per lb., 83.2 shells per lb., 26.35% kernel.
WATT WALNUT—from Himalayan Mts., India, B. C.—grown 1940. 1 large nut—35.4 per lb., 1 kernel—75.6 per lb., 1 shell—66.7. per lb., 46.876% kernel.
Abstract of letter from Thomas Mitchell, 259 W. 29th St., New York, N. Y., to Julio P. Grandjean, Box 748, Mexico, D. F. I am a tree breeder interested in creating hybrid crop trees, oaks and, if possible, bi-generic hybrids of carob with honey locust and with mesquite. I have, in the past seven years, made over a thousand crosses of poplars and about 600 inter-specific oak crosses. This spring I made 250 oak crosses at the Arnold Arboretum, of which about 20% seem to be ripening viable acorns. I have a list of 90 varieties of hybrid oaks and about 60 varieties of American Asiatic and European species which are available here or at the Arboretum. I will send this list to any one who is interested in trying to graft them on native oak seedlings, and will send scions to any one willing to send me acorns, scions or pollen.
I believe the oak tree to be, potentially, more valuable than any other crop tree.
Abstract of letter from W. G. Tatum, Lebanon, Kentucky, to the Chairman of the Survey Committee. We have had reports from E. C. Rice of Absher, Ky., but his work with trees and his wonderful personality are not well enough known to us. Besides his large plantings of nut and fruit trees he does general farming. He has almost all of the finer varieties of nut trees, many of them large, in bearing and doing well.
Lewis Edmunds of Glasgow, Ky., discoverer of the Edmunds black walnut, is a general farmer whose plantings of nut tree, while not large, include many of the older and better known sorts, as well as later discoveries of his own, including a very thin shelled walnut, shagbark hickories, a seedless persimmon; and he is planning a large planting of chestnuts. He has a Stuart pecan that bears well-filled nuts every year, apparently without benefit of pollen from another tree.
Our experiment station has issued a new leaflet on nut growing in Kentucky and our State Forester, Mr. Jackson has given radio talks on the subject.
I am planning and planting all the time and have at least a small start of most of the better strains of all varieties. I have a little nursery where I grow and graft my own trees. I consider Edmunds a very fine black walnut. I think that more free exchange of graftwood should be encouraged among our members, and we should encourage and help newcomers in learning the art of grafting. I got 90% of my Stambaugh grafts to grow this season, in a row of stocks running from the size of a lead pencil to that of the average man's little finger, using scions near to the size of the stocks, grafted by the "whip and tongue" splice method.
Letter from H. F. Stoke to Miss Mildred Jones: I am pleased to comply with your request to report on those varieties that have given me the best results in this locality. It is perhaps unfortunate that some of them are unknown or obscure varieties that are not generally in the hands of the nursery trade. (As an aside, I am quitting the nursery business, so what I say is without prejudice or any personal bias.)
I am listing the varieties in order of my estimate of them for this locality based on my own personal experience. I am becoming increasingly hard boiled in my judgments based on two considerations: first, that a nut tree should bear within a reasonable time and that the crops should be regular and reasonably abundant; second, that the nuts should be fit to eat after they have been grown. These two considerations knock out many varieties that have been highly touted.
Filberts. The Buchanan and its second generation seedlings have been better filled and more productive than any of the European hazels. Italian red comes next. Brixnut and Longfellow are strong, healthy growers, but the former does not fill well and the latter bears sparsely. Barcelona is out.
Chinese chestnut. Hobson, Carr, Zimmerman, Reliable. Hobson heads the list as most precocious and productive. It requires a pollenizer. Carr will bear partial crops without cross-pollination. Zimmerman is almost as productive as Carr, but its need of cross-pollination is unknown to me. Reliable is the smallest of the four, of high quality and a steady bearer of moderate crops. Pollination requirements not known. (The original Zimmerman sent me by Dr. Zimmerman was worthless. The present Zimmerman, furnished me by Dr. Smith, is a satisfactory nut.)
Japanese chestnut. Austin is the best of the lot.
Hybrid chestnut. One of Dr. Colby's hybrids is promising but has not been released and should not be listed without his permission. The hybrid I have been selling as Stoke is a better nut than any of the Japs, including Austin. A moderate producer of moderate crops of beautiful, high quality nuts ripening the first of September. The Government's S8 Van Fleet hybrid is a very prolific hybrid of rather poor quality. It should be satisfactory for people who cook their chestnuts. Mr. C. A. Reed should be consulted before listing. S8 will outyield any chestnut I know of. Tree is less vigorous than Stoke and more subject to blight.
Black walnut. Homeland, Creitz, Mintle, Thomas. Homeland is a local nut and is unknown to the trade. It makes a poor test score, partly because of its pointed shape, partly because of the plumpness and tenderness of the kernel. It fills out much better than Thomas growing beside it: bears moderate crops every year, both on the parent and on grafted trees. It is a nice, upright, healthy grower; new growth tinged with purple. I consider quality first class. Creitz bears regularly and well; nuts very like Ohio but husks thin and it cleans much better. Kernels apt to be shrivelled somewhat. Mintle good bearer, plumper than Creitz, pellicle somewhat off color. Thomas does not fill so well, especially if given much nitrogen, which Homeland will stand. Stabler worthless here.
English walnut. Bedford, Lancaster, Payne, Franquette. Bedford is a local nut found on an abandoned farm in Bedford County, Va. A regular bearer of high quality nuts of the Mayette type. Blossoms late, a little before Mayette and Franquette. The only one of fifteen varieties that I have fruited that can be depended on to pollinize itself; medium size, well sealed, cures well, no bitterness to pellicle, no "sticktite" nor moldy nuts. Lancaster, very large, very vigorous tree, precocious, prolific, quality of nuts good but not best; staminate blossoms early, pistillate late. Requires a pollinizer. Franquette, Mayette and Bedford should answer. Payne will not stand winter temperatures much below zero; requires cross-pollination; needs seemingly met by Crath and Broadview. Good nut of good size and quality, precocious and very prolific. Moderate grower. Worst fault starts too early in spring. Good for south and upper south. I forgot to mention that one of the worst faults of Lancaster is that the nuts must be dried promptly on ripening; sometimes the kernels mold before the nuts fall from the tree. Franquette should rank with Bedford except that it usually bears poorly, although rarely it bears a good crop. Always blossoms freely. Trouble seems to be pollination. Bedford may be the answer; Mayette is not, and also bears very poorly. King and Chambers, recommended by Carroll Bush as pollinizers for Franquette, produce their staminates too early here. Broadview is vigorous, precocious, prolific, large with a pellicle too bitter for human consumption. Nuts sometimes spoil on the tree, like Lancaster.
Heartnut. Like most English walnuts heartnuts blossom too early in the spring and are usually killed back by late frosts here. Walters is the only one that blossoms late enough to produce usually a crop.
I still think that a well-filled Sifford is the best black walnut I have seen, but the parent tree generally produces poorly-filled nuts, and the young trees have been very slow to come into bearing, so I have left it off the list. Early defoliation appears to be the cause of poor filling in wet seasons. When well filled it runs 32% kernel.
Any and all of the nuts listed, of all species, are perfectly winter-hardy here, except that Payne English walnut was injured by a temperature of 10 below zero some years ago. All English walnuts, except Franquette and most seedling Chinese chestnuts lost their crops last spring by a freeze May 5th. Hobson, Carr, Zimmerman and Reliable came through with crops.
It will be most unfortunate if the many nurseries that, in my opinion, will go into nut tree production should boost seedling trees just because they do not have or cannot produce the named varieties. If the public can be at this time educated to demand select varieties it will influence the planting of nut trees favorably for the next hundred years. If they get shunted off on to seedlings it will take another twenty-five years to awaken the present interest. One might as well expect an apple growing industry to spring from the indiscriminate planting of seedling apple orchards. This goes especially for the English walnut and the Chinese chestnut.
Abstract of letter from Rev. P. C. Crath, Cannington, Ontario. Only a limited report is possible this year. In Toronto there are four Carpathian walnut trees 20 to 25 feet high which bear nuts regularly. One of these bears nuts of huge size, another smaller nuts with very thin shell and with the flavor of the Cashew nut. The other two trees produce regularly medium sized nuts with thin shells. In Islington, near Toronto, Carpathian No. 34 belonging to Mr. J. Robson continues bearing. Mr. Robson died last spring and I am naming this tree No. 34 the "Robson" in his memory. The eight Carpathians along the Welland Canal are doing well and bear every year. The tree in the yard of the Rev. Foster at Welland is a nice big tree and bears every season but squirrels carry off all the crop. In Ontario until the present time the curculio has not attacked Carpathian walnuts. Prof. C. T. Currelly of Canton has some nice big trees of his own grafting. One of these is of the Landyga type that in its seventh year now has never shown any cold injury. We can feel assured that the Landyga type is the best for the cold regions of Ontario. A tall and beautiful No. 46 that had a bacteriological canker near the root has thoroughly healed. Other No. 46 trees on the same estate are doing fine. The original No. 34 (now Robson) on Prof. Currelly's farm is doing exceptionally well. It is the type of a good market walnut. The Harbey Carpathians, belonging to J. regia maxima, with very thin shells are also doing well.
My Ukrainian and Turkish filberts on Currelly's estate have now become small bushes, 40 in number bearing abundantly.
Abstract of letter from Sylvester M. Schessler, Genoa, Ohio. To keep scionwood I place sticks, such as elder, on a cement floor, lay the scions crosswise on these, cover them with sawdust and throw an oilcloth over this. In May I graft by the slotbark method nailing the scion and tying with string or rubber bands and wax with Acme Grafting Compound put on cold. I cover with a two pound paper sack and later stake up the new growth. I like fair sized scion wood cut from near the base of the new growth and often graft with two year old wood carrying some one year wood. I will exchange graft wood and have several varieties of Ohio prize winners bearing nuts. I also do budding by the patch method.
Experiment Station Investigates Tree Believed to be the Oldest Chestnut in Connecticut
Progress Report from Connecticut Experiment Station, Dated November 15, 1943
Many years ago, at a time when the American chestnut was still the king of the woods, a farmer set out a small orchard of nut trees on the bank of the Connecticut River flood plain north of Hartford. Now, some 60 years later, one lone Japanese chestnut survives. Dr. Donald F. Jones of the Agricultural Station in New Haven, who recently investigated the tree, believes it is by far the oldest living chestnut in the State. And the most interesting thing about the tree is that it shows no signs of blight, the disease that destroyed all the native chestnuts.
Dr. Jones' attention was called to the tree late last fall by a hunter who noticed a deposit of chestnut hulls in the river bank. On investigation, the man discovered the tree and was impressed by its size. This fall the tree was visited in search of nuts. There, rising above the brush and brambles of what is now a tobacco field, stood the chestnut, 30 foot high and 18 inches in diameter. The men were able to rescue only six nuts, their visit being a little late for the main harvest. The nuts were among the largest Dr. Jones has seen. They have been planted at the Experiment Station farm in Mount Carmel.
Inquiry in the neighborhood of the chestnut revealed that two or three people knew about the tree and had gathered the nuts that are produced profusely every other year. One of the neighbors recalled that 60 years or more ago, when he was but 12 years old, a man named John P. Jones had set out the nut trees. But the original source of the trees is unknown and it remains a question whether the planter got the trees from a nursery in this country or directly from the Orient.
Though the lone survivor is somewhat neglected, with several dead branches that have been left untrimmed, a neighbor was interested enough in its possibilities to plant some of the nuts. This resulted in one six-year-old seedling tree. Unfortunately, this already shows blight and is apparently the result of pollination by some blighted American seedling or sprout in the neighborhood. The nuts collected this fall may also give disappointing results but should transmit to later generations the blight-resistance of this Japanese parent. In addition to planting the nuts, Dr. Jones will take scions from the tree for grafting on young trees at the Station's Mount Carmel farm. Those should produce results more quickly than the seeds. Next summer pollen will be collected from the tree for use in hybridizing some of the young trees already growing here.
Dr. Jones has for many years been interested in the development of a useful chestnut for Connecticut conditions. Some of the young trees, crosses between American and Asiatic types, show promise but will take several years of testing to prove their value. The new "find" may be of considerable help in shortening the length of time necessary to get a tree that is blight resistant, of large fruiting habit and of good timber quality.
(Note by Editor—This tree has been known to me for probably fifteen years. It was brought to my attention by Mr. Charles Vibert of East Hartford and named by me the "Vibbert," [with two b's to insure the right pronounciation]. The name has been published and I have sent scions to a number of people and grafted trees myself. The tree bears a very large nut, twelve selected ones weighing over a pound. I have gathered a good many quarts of them and exhibited them in Hartford and Litchfield. So far as my observation goes this large size is at least partly due to the fact that there is only one filled nut in a burr, the other two being aborted. This fact, and the fact that the crops are small, I have attributed to the partial inefficiency of self-pollination, there being no evident outside source of pollen. One year I grafted several other varieties into the top of the tree. Most of those grew a year or two but then died. I have believed that this was due to blight. There has been much dead wood in the tree ever since I have known it and I had supposed that this was blight.)
Report of Committee of Ohio Nut Growers
A. A. BUNGART, Chairman
On September 5, 1943, members of the Northern Nut Growers' Association living in Northern Ohio met at the Wooster Experiment Farm to discuss nut growing in the State. At this meeting a committee was formed to work out plans and suggestions for a twenty-year nut growing program. It was felt that greater progress would result if something more definite were done by way of coordinating the work of the Forestry Department with the effort of individuals. The committee, meeting here on October 31, 1943, submits the following report. The chairman has attempted to incorporate most of the material submitted by members of the committee and by others.
The committee recommends the appointment of a full time research man in nut culture, or two part-time workers. This man, or men, would form the hub around which the 20 year program would be built. There should be a division of labor: certain individuals already embarked on a program of their own should continue their work and coordinate it with a specialist at Wooster, or whatever place is designated as headquarters. For example, Mr. Silvis favors the hickory over all other nut trees. As a young man he can reasonably look forward to many years of experimentation with various varieties and under different conditions. Mr. Davidson is following a plan of planting large numbers of black walnut seed from blocks of trees in which natural crossing might combine the desirable characteristics of several better-than-average named varieties. Mr. Sherman has collected English walnuts from trees in the northern part of the state. Already he has seedlings of many varieties growing at Canfield.
Now, each of these projects is excellent and should be encouraged in every way. Whenever members of our organization find new and better nuts of those species, they should send nuts, or scions or data about the trees, to these gentlemen.
As time goes on there should be opportunities to farm out projects to individual growers. Mr. Fickes, for example, by experience and because of his favorable location could well carry out experiment suggested by a specialist, (or as a research worker to help with one of his own.)
It would seem, apart from large scale operations to be mentioned later, that the specialist or expert should make his headquarters a clearing house for information sent by members. It should be his job to study some of the scientific phases of nut culture, such as artificial crossing, pollenizing data on various species and varieties of nut trees, genetic investigations, value of the proper root stocks, and, as time and information would warrant, the publishing of monographs on phases of nut growing. Finally such specialist might consider broadly the problems of securing an increased food supply from Ohio forests.
2. Devote the 9 acres at Apple Creek to nut tree planting. Plant two or three trees of each variety that has especially good traits. Also set out numbers of seedling stock upon which to graft scions of promising trees. By having the main planting near the Experiment Farm, the plant breeder at Wooster should also attend to nut trees.
3. The Forestry Department should procure seed of hardy English walnuts and of other nut trees; grow one-year seedlings and distribute these in small numbers (not over five or six) to people who will plant them in good locations. Such action should be started at once; in twenty years or less something good might result.
4. Continue the planting of all promising varieties of the different species of nut trees at Mahoning so that the bearing habits, production, etc., could be under strict observation and study, and so that a supply of scion wood might be available for other plantings and for commercial propagation.
5. Establish a similar project in some other section of Ohio; the southeastern section would seem to be the logical place when nut growing becomes a commercial industry in Ohio.
6. a. Graft promising hickories in the tops of established hickory seedling trees. There is a volunteer stand of such hickories on the lands of the Mahoning Valley Sanitary District that would be ideal for such top-working. No doubt many other such places could be located.
b. Same as "a" but using black walnuts.
c. Same as "a" but using English walnuts.
Suitable black walnut seedlings are now growing on the Mahoning Valley Sanitary District for projects 6b and c.
7. Encourage the planting by the Forestry Department of better seed from the best named varieties. While this would be a long-range program it would be preeminently worth while. The forests of Ohio have all but disappeared. Organizations with vision and unselfishness must begin to replace them.
8. Urge a program of education. Nut trees require good soil and proper care. It would be folly for an organization to sponsor a program for nut tree planting, unless the growers are provided with proper cultural directions. The tendency in the past has been to plant nut trees in out-of-the-way places, and let nature take her course. Nature took her course; the result, scrubby trees and disgruntled planters.
9. Initiate future nut contests for the purpose of arousing public interests in nut growing and for bringing to light new varieties. Four-H clubs, county agents, boy scout troops, sport clubs, all might be urged to co-operate with the Forestry Department, or with our own organizations, in making a state-wide survey for better nuts. One member of the committee thinks that the Ohio Farmer contest did not bring to light all the good wild trees, although every nut grower is indebted to that splendid paper for its cooperation in the past.
10. Favor a moderate amount of publicity. Any plans, developments, or discoveries should be put before the public in scientific journals, farm papers, and the daily press. But propaganda of a sensational of exaggerated nature ought to be discouraged. In other words, the committee thinks that false claims and high pressure publicity on new varieties would do more harm than good.
11. Study the pollenizing problems of all the better varieties of nut trees, especially the black walnut, chestnut and hickory species, and test the better varieties to find those best suited to Ohio conditions.
12. Develop and perfect a simplified means of propagating nut trees and incorporate this information in a bulletin for all who are interested in nut trees. Many farmers and fruit growers shy from nursery prices for nut trees. If they could propagate their own they would be more likely to plant them.
13. a. Urge a means of developing better kinds of nut trees and nut hybrids for Ohio. Specifically, embark upon a program of artificial crossing and hybridizing. While some might object to the length of time required to check results, the committee thinks it possible to check three generations within a 20 year program. This could be expedited by budding or grafting the crossed seedling upon the stock of a bearing tree. The original seedling should be saved to check its growth, shape and other characteristics not apparent in the grafted branch. A Thomas-Elmer Myers cross might possibly combine the desirable traits of both parents, or a McAllister-shagbark cross might increase the productivity of the former. A nut, for example, having the cracking qualities of the English walnut, and the hardiness and retention of flavor when cooked or baked of a black walnut, would be a worthy achievement. Also, securing pollen from a hybrid English black walnut and back crossing with either species might produce the dream tree.
N. B. Hybrid vigor might be a blessing for the quicker growth of all forest trees. Experiments in nut trees might be applied to other species.
13. b. Establish in the same tree two varieties suitable for crossing. This seed should be distributed for propagation by the Forestry Department to public institutions and to others for reforestation on waste lands or water-shed project or private grounds.
By selecting isolated trees for this mating, the nuts would either be self-pollinated or a cross of the desirable varieties. This it would seem would yield better nuts than the hit-an-miss methods of nature.
14. Use a new yard stick for measuring the value of nut trees for commercial production. Size of nut, thickness of shell, cracking qualities are desirable traits but they might not be deciding factors in evaluating a tree. Other factors equally important perhaps even more so, are size of nut clusters, rate of growth, consistency in bearing annual cross, yield per tree of shucked nuts, resistance to blights and insect nests.
15. Compile a list of the best articles that have appeared in the N.N.G.A. reports and print them in pamphlet form for distribution to Ohio growers. All the articles on black walnuts would be found in the one booklet, and so on for all other trees in which Ohioans would be interested.
16. Check carefully the experiences and observations of all the members so as to assemble data on the behavior of nut trees. This information would be more useful in determining what crosses would be desirable. The Thomas nut, for example, has been both praised and condemned. What would be the concensus of opinion on the merits of this much debated variety?
17. Make northern Ohio the nucleus of the N.N.G.A. Geographically and climatically, this section of the state represents an ideal spot for nut tree experimentation, in the northern states. The experiment farms at Wooster and Canfield, the Findley State Forest, the various state properties, all could be brought into a closely knit functioning project.
The committee thinks that a 20 year program along these 17 lines, or a modification of them, will eventually prove successful. If such an organization can offer farmers and all others interested in nuts and conservation a better walnut, filbert, hickory or chestnut suitable for Ohio soils and Ohio climate the effort would seem worth while.
So far people interested in nut culture have been called "nuts." Practical-minded people are apt to smile at such nut experiments, but a glimpse at our state proves that nut enthusiasts have vision, and a faith in the future; that they are modern Johnny Appleseeds with more of Johnny's methods but less of his madness.
The history of our state is a history of squandered natural resources, of get-rich-quick methods, of wanton destruction of all forms of plant and animal life. If this organization can in a small way stop the erosion of gullied hillsides, check the rampage of swollen rivers, arrest the fertility of Ohio farms from floating to the Gulf or the Ocean, if it can find some substitute for the magnificent chestnut trees now gone forever, if it can make better nuts grow where none or poor ones grow now, if it can sell conservation and a love of trees to every farmer in Ohio, this organization or any other will be conferring a rich legacy upon future Ohioans.
Dr. John Harvey Kellogg died at the age of 91 at his home in Battle Creek, Michigan, on December 14, 1943, from pneumonia. Until his death he was one of our two honorary members, the other being his brother, W. K. Kellogg. Our only other honorary members have been Henry Hales, H. E. Van Deman, and Dr. Walter Van Fleet. The Kelloggs were thus honored because of their large gifts to the association, their entertainment of the association twice at Battle Creek, and the numerous papers on nuts as food sent to the association by Dr. Kellogg. He once gave us $500 as prizes for a nut contest. He was present at our Stamford meeting and at those in Battle Creek. A full account of his life and works was printed in the N.Y. Times for December 16, 1943; and from a medical standpoint, in the Journal of the American Medical Association for December 25, 1943, p. 1132. Other accounts may be found in the Michigan newspapers and elsewhere. He was certainly one of our most eminent members. He was resolute and sincere in his beliefs, forceful and persistent in advocating them though they differed quite radically from the beliefs of most of the medical profession. He would not permit his patients to use alcohol, tobacco, meat in any form, or tea and coffee. Those who had been excessive users of these things were often immensely benefitted by a stay in a Kellogg sanitorium. He joined our association on account of his advocacy of nuts as food to replace in part the absence of meat. Of late years he had laid more emphasis on soy beans. Whatever may be thought of his radical views on food there can be no doubt that he did an immense amount of good not only by his treatment of individual patients but also by the wide dissemination of his teaching and his invention of many useful forms of so-called "health foods."
THE CORSE PRESS, Inc.,
Sandy Creek, N.Y.