If a Black Walnut tree falls in your pond remove it ASAP

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Renee, Sep 20, 2008.

  1. Renee

    Renee Well-Known Member

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    We had three trees fall into our pond when the remnants of Ike blew through here last Sunday resulting in a big fish kill. One of those trees was a Black Walnut and I know they are toxic so I could kick myself for not thinking of it in time to save the pond. We have a creek that runs parallel to the pond. Between the edge of the pond and the creek ravine is a strip of land only about 10 feet wide. Two of the trees that blew over were growing in that ravine so when they fell they fell uphill and thankfully at least 2/3 of their tops are above water. The Walnut crashed onto our dock which also helped keep some of it out of the water. We removed the third tree but the two that grew on the side of the ravine will be more of a challenge. We have our aerator running and my husband hoped the leaves wouldn’t decompose so quickly that it would be a problem. A few days ago I thought about Black Walnuts being poisonous. We should have panicked. The pond is about 70ft by 175 feet. Yesterday I had to scoop out dead bass and blue gill. The water almost looks black when you look into it. We dammed up pools of water in our shallow creek where we were able to put some large mouth bass. My husband could catch them because they were already swimming on their sides. They look great now. We have some Koi that are quite large and beautiful. They seem to have the most resistance to the toxins. I pulled out the first dead one this morning. They are too quick for me to catch yet they are lethargic. I haven’t seen the Amur, dead or alive. It’s probably fruitless to save fish for this pond. I have no idea how long the pond will remain toxic. I’m going to have to assume that the walnut tree still had some Walnuts on its branches that shook off and fell to the bottom of the pond when it crashed. My husband is out of town until tomorrow. I’m not good with a chain saw and using a tractor in precarious places so I wait for him. I’m rambling here folks, sorry.
    The moral of the story is this: Never let a black walnut tree fall into your pond. The only good thing is that the tree is a big one and the trunk didn’t have any branches for about 16 feet. Maybe we’ll get some decent timber money for it. Blessings, Linda Renee
     
  2. chickenista

    chickenista Original recipe! Supporter

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    So sorry that happened to you. Black Walnut trees are just evil. When we were house buying this time the one stipulation I had was NO black walnuts!!! I went through every property and checked every tree.. we have none!... now, to get busy cutting down the stupid chestnuts!
     

  3. sugarbush

    sugarbush Bees and Tree specialty

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    Juglone was used to kill fish by the Native Americans. Just a few walnut leaves or hauls ground up will kill out a whole pond. I think you will have to replace all the water in the pond as juglone sticks around for a long time.

    I think having the aerator on mixed it in good and contributed to the rapid die off.
     
  4. greenmulberry

    greenmulberry Well-Known Member

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    I agree, I hate the things. When we bought our house I thought it was the perfect lot, and had a nice place for a big garden. Then the first year I couldn't figure out why I couldn't grow decent tomato plants. :confused:

    Did a little research, and found it was the mature black walnuts all over the place, the roost systems go all over. Juglone!
     
  5. texican

    texican Well-Known Member

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    I have a dozen or so... wish I had thousands of them... They provide an excellent early fall food source. And, if grown closely enough in plantation style, the timber is very valuable (if a person has 30 or so years to wait).

    I wouldn't want them near ponds or gardens though. Perfect for around the house, as they won't allow other weed trees to grow nearby.

    Sorry you had to learn a lesson the hard way.
     
  6. Renee

    Renee Well-Known Member

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    I shut the aerator off and I have some water coming into the pond from the creek. The only fish that I can see left are Koi and they are staying fairly close to the fresh water source. I think my neighbor is going to try and catch them for his pond if they are still alive tomorrow. The bass and sunfish we rescued and put in the creek are doing well. The dead koi I pulled out this morning measured 20" from snout to tail.
    We have several black walnut trees around our property, in fact two other Black walnuts were blown down the same day in an area away from the pond. In the past the only concern I had about Black Walnuts was that they were not in the pasture! This is a tiny, tiny problem compared with the storm damage Ike caused for so many others. As strong as the winds were here in Ohio I can't imagine what it was like to go through the hurricane in Texas.
    Blessings, Linda Renee
     
  7. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    They're not good near gardens but I had really never thought about ponds. Something to definitely keep in mind.

    I love black walnut trees. The only kind of walnut worth planting. I try to plant more every year. Gonna try for 200 next spring. They're great for food and and they're about the most valuable tree you can plant on your place. Story went around that a couple of old boys in the next county over almost ended up killing each other over a really nice veneer quality walnut tree on their property line. They each had their rifles out and were drawing a bead on the other and one old boy threatened to shoot the logging crew if they touched that tree.

    This time of year I'm spending lots of time gathering walnuts this time of year. Lots of work but they're worth the effort. The hickory nuts are particularly good this year for some reason. In fact, I'm going out tomorrow afternoon and pick walnuts and hickory nuts.
     
  8. ace admirer

    ace admirer Well-Known Member Supporter

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    a blight killed most black walnut in our part of the country many decades ago. they are rare here.
     
  9. sugarbush

    sugarbush Bees and Tree specialty

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    They are not worth what legend has made them out to be. Veneer grade logs bring the highest prices at about $1200.00 an MBF. Veneer quality does not grow on its own though, they have to be trained either naturally by other trees or artifically.

    I have people call me several times a year to see if I want to buy the walnut tree that is in their yard. I always tell them that if they want to hire I tree company to take it down I will remove the logs for them free of charge.

    I had a tree company give me a mess of logs last year and their was a truckload of walnut mixed in that he picked out because he wanted to sell it. He loaded it on his log truck and hauled it into the log yard.....and then he hauled it back to me and unloaded it back on the pile. said they told him they would give him $300.00 for the whole load. He said he told them he would burn it first.
     
  10. texican

    texican Well-Known Member

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    Black Walnut logs and Ebay have a lot in common.

    I might have a book that wouldn't bring ten cents at a garage sale here, but put it on ebay and it'll bring a Benjamin.

    Trying to sell a veneer grade black walnut (or any veneer grade hardwood log) log at a local mill is about the same thing. Loggers around here 'save' up a load of veneer logs, and carrying em way up into Arkansas, where they bring the best money.

    Anyone local that has any species of hardwood, pine, cypress, or cedar, I try and acquire, if at all possible, for no cost... I carry it to the bandsawmill and get it cut on halfsies...
     
  11. Rockin'B

    Rockin'B Well-Known Member

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    At the end of last winter, we sold 18 walnut trees for $12,000. Walnut isn't bringing what it did before the housing slump, but it's still valuable if it's a quality tree. Cherry, on the other hand, isn't fetching anything here right now.
     
  12. sugarbush

    sugarbush Bees and Tree specialty

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    How many BF was it? I have sawn some walnut that was 28 inches through the middle and have sawn some that was 8 inches through the middle. 18 28 inch trees will bring more than 18 8 inch trees;)

    The people who call me about their trees frequently use wording like "that is a 10k tree" I usually reply that it will be a 3 k tree once the tree service takes it down for them.

    Around here white oak brings more than walnut.
     
  13. EasyDay

    EasyDay Gimme a YAAAAY!

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    I agree with you, texican. Wish I had a bunch more, too, for the reasons you listed.

    There are many plants that WILL grow around black walnut trees, but many won't. One must do a little research and work WITH the tree.

    IMO, there are trees that are WAY more evil than black walnut.... and worthless as lumber, where black walnut is like growing money.
     
  14. Tiempo

    Tiempo Moderator Staff Member

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    I won't have black walnut either, any wood that is nasty enough to cause life threteaning lameness (laminitis) in horses just by them standing on the chipped wood is not welcome here.
     
  15. Chuck R.

    Chuck R. Well-Known Member

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    We've got about 25 on our 80 acres; several of them truly are large magnificent trees and should bring a few dollars when the time is right. We're in the process of planting more wherever there’s room and they won’t interfere with future livestock.

    Chuck
     
  16. ozark_jewels

    ozark_jewels Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We have always had black walnuts. Just love them. True, you can't plant a garden under them, but who plants a garden that near the woods anyway?
    Goats love them, cows love them, in the fall we gather the nuts and sell them.
    We have always pastured our horses(now just one horse), in the same pastures as our walnut trees. They have never been unhealthy.
    This year there is a bumper crop of walnuts.....some extra cash!
     
  17. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    Out of curiosity, how far away does one need to plant their garden from a walnut tree?

    When we lived in town for a while as a kid we had a walnut tree about 15 yards from the garden and everything grew fairly well. The tomatoes were a bit problematic at times though and in hindsight it may have been the walnut tree. They would grow extremely nice and healthy and about the time they were to start producing they got the wilt. They still produced but they didn't look too healthy.
     
  18. sugarbush

    sugarbush Bees and Tree specialty

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    Outside the range of its roots; Also you want to clean up all the nuts and leaves every fall because they de-compose and leach juglone back into the soil.

    It is a protection against over crowding. The juglone is a herbicide to keep other plants from competing for the trees nutrients. Other types of trees also have juglone. Coffee plants and green tea plants have a simular herbicide that we know as caffeine.

    Juglone is not known to be toxic to humans, but I sware when I am sawing walnut and the wind is blowing the wrong way I feel nauseous.
     
  19. greenmulberry

    greenmulberry Well-Known Member

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    That's what the walnuts do. They do fine for a while then later in the season start wilting. Depending on how close they are they can kill the tomatoes, or just make them wilt and "struggle".

    My garden is about 25 feet from the edge of the closest branch of the closest walnut, and I get the walnut wilt every year. Unfortunately, it is also the only place that gets any sun, as we live on a fully wooded lot.
     
  20. Jim S.

    Jim S. Well-Known Member

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    Hi Emily! I have a black walnut, too, in the side yard. Mmm! Good nut meat if you are patient.