The Nuttery : Volume 4 Number 4 September 1985

In this Issue...

Fall Field Day

The Survey SIG is pleased to announce the Chapter's 1985 Fall Field Day to be held at the Dominion Arboretum, starting at 10:00 AM. Meet at the second parking lookout on the arboretum drive. Bring your lunch, drinks, and a friend! For more information, call Dick Bell, North Gower, 489-2095

An Assistant Editor Needed

The Nuttery needs an Assistant Editor to carry out two important duties, namely

  1. Stand in for the Editor when necessary;
  2. Report in the Nuttery on developments in the Chapter and on topics of interest.

For more information, call the Editor. No experience Necessary - this is a marvellous opportunity to learn first hand the business of editing and publishing a newsletter!

Upcoming Business

A bibliography of nut-related literature will highlight the technical section of the next issue, to be published 11 November 1985.

The next Executive meeting will be held Friday 25 Oct at 7:30 PM at the Chair's abode. The deadline for articles, letters, ads, etc. for the next Nuttery (vol.4 no.5) is Saturday 2 November.

Report of the 27 July Meeting

This year, our Chapter hosted the 1985 AGM of our parent organization, the Society of Ontario Nut Growers, concurrently with our Summer Field Day. The meeting, which attracted 30 members, was held at the Baxter Conservation Area, in the Interpretive Center. The day-long program's morning included the SONG AGM Business Meeting, presided over by Heinz Baumgarten, the President of SONG and an overview of Ottawa Area Chapter of SONG and our main projects. The lunch, partly a bring-your-own and partly a supplied cold lunch with coffee and cakes laid on by the Silviculture SIG, made a profit for our Chapter's coffers. Thanks to Irmi Underwood, Silviculture Convenor, Kathleen Jones and Muriel Park. After lunch, our visitors were toured through the Baxter Nut Grove.

The Nut Grove was certainly the high point of the day! Thanks to the many hours of hard, dedicated labour by George Joiner, Fil Park, Alec Jones, and Rideau Valley Conservation Authority's Cliff Craig (who is also a Chapter member), under Georges direction, the Grove was beautifully groomed. Each group of trees was clearly labelled with the new metal tags, the under grass killed and the site well mulched with wood shavings. The general area was well mowed and beginning to look like a lawn. The Grove is quickly becoming the nut tree arboretum as originally planned. It is the only Nut Tree Arboretum in the province. Congratulations to all who have worked on the grove since its inception in 1980!

A special thanks to Audrey Renton who kindly researched and gathered local tourist and historical information for our visitors, helping to make their stay in the Ottawa Valley the more interesting and eventful.

The following letter, reproduced in toto, was recently received from Heinz Baumgarten, the President of our Chapter's parent organization.

Dear Hank

On behalf of the S.O.N.G. members who attended the summer meeting at the Baxter Conservation Area I would like to thank you and all the people involved for providing us with a very interesting and worthwhile day. The optimism and team effort are an inspiration. It's a delight to see so many members actively participating. Please thank all the people involved who so generously devoted their time and talent, also the Baxter Conservation Authority for their fine facility.

The Ottawa Chapter must also be congratulated for their labour of love in creating the Baxter Nut Grove. Although still in its infancy I'm sure that in time it will stand as testimony to those who made it possible. I only wish more time could have been found. I think perhaps it should be noted for future meetings that it would have been better not to have had the annual general meeting combined with our visit. I felt the activity of your chapter was deserving of more time. An excellent curriculum!

Gratefully yours, Heinz Baumgarten, President

On behalf of the Ottawa Chapter, I thank Heinz for bringing the SONG AGM to us, and Glen Sandham whose idea it was to do so! For our part, we learned much about nut trees from our visitors and we were both proud and pleased for this opportunity to show nut growing experts our progress. As Heinz asks in his letter, on his behalf, I thank our contributing Chapter members for a rewarding day, and specially Fil Park, our Founder, who put the Ottawa Chapter on the road!

Juglans Nigra Squares

This new recipe features the black walnut.

1 cup butter
1 cup light brown sugar
3 tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp ground allspice
¼ tsp grated nutmeg
1 egg, separated
2 cup sifted flour
¾ cup chopped black walnuts
¾ cup raisins

Cream the butter and sugar, then work in the spices. Add the egg yolk, then the flour. When well mixed, press into ungreased 9x12" flat pan. Brush the top with the egg white. Cover evenly with the nuts and raisins, pressing them into the dough. Bake at 325°F (165C) for 25 minutes. Cool in the pan, then cut into squares.

Polly Forrestall

SIG Project Highlights

This is the first of what will be a continuing series of articles highlighting the activities of each of our Special Interest Groups. Jim Bartley, our Vice-Chair, will be reporting. However, this time his mother is ill, and we are filling in for Jim. Our heartfelt best wishes to Mrs. Bartley for a speedy recovery!

The Silviculture SIG continues to work wonders at the Baxter Nut Grove, which was beautiful for the SONG AGM in July. The question they now face is how to maintain the Grove at its peak of perfection. Also, Irene Woolford is pressing ahead to set up a grove in concert with the South Nation Conservation Authority. Final arrangements need to be made with the Authority.

The Nut Use SIG is moving ahead quickly on two projects. First, the growing collection of articles on nut trees needs to be indexed for easier access, so the group will be compiling and publishing an indexed bibliography in the next Nuttery. Their other project will be to compile, test and publish a nuttery cookbook, to be sold at a modest price to help raise funds for the chapter. They welcome your contribution of articles, recipes, and help to get both these tasks done!

The Survey SIG now have a draft scheme for classifying nut tree sites with respect to superior seed collecting. This exciting document was prepared for the Chapter by Peter Janas, Head, National Tree Seed Bank, Petawawa National Forestry Institute, who is also a Chapter member. Inventree will benefit immensely from having this new classification scheme. The group now needs to draft a users' manual for applying the scheme to Inventree.

The Horticulture SIG is deliberating on whether or not a repeat of last year's fall stratification project at Baxter is feasible this year. There are fewer nuts available generally, though maybe there are a few sites with abundant fruit. Also, they will be soon following up on last spring's massive seed distribution, for germination and growth data.

Jim Bartley

Seed Stratification this Fall

There are two aspects to this business. First, the follow-up on the project last fall. If you are interested in helping collect the data, let me know soonest. A group will be set up shortly to handle the canvassing of the nut seed recipients. Secondly, what are the possibilities of collecting large quantities of seed this fall for stratification? Generally, there is not much seed around, though maybe some spots are bearing heavily. If you know of any, or care to look around your area, please let me know of your interest as soon as possible since the collecting season is fast approaching!

Alec Jones, Horticulture SIG, Ottawa 828-6459

Bibliography and Cookbook

Since the Chapter now has a significant collection of articles on nut trees, it is time to make it available to members. This gives us two problems: how to put together a bibliography and how to make the articles themselves available. If you can help record and index our literature, or you have ideas on how to make our literature available, please call me as soon as possible!

The other project is to publish a modest cookbook of nut recipes. We will need recipes, cooks to test them, writers to record them, word processors, designers, compilers etc. and so on! We have 3 or 4 participants already, but there is lots of room for more skills and workers! This cookbook will be given as wide a circulation as possible, since we hop to raise significant funds from its sale over the coming years.

Polly Forrestall, Convenor, Nut Use SIG, Ottawa 233-5189

Membership SIG Reborn

The Membership Special Interest Group has been converted to a committee. The Executive, at its last meeting, recognized that this group was undertaking the ongoing responsibility of recruiting new members. Having ongoing responsibilities is seen as a signal that a group may need closer ties to the Executive. Consequently, the group has been renamed the Promotions Committee, with the Chapter Secretary as its chair. In general, the committee will be responsible not only for recruitment and membership services, but also for promoting the goals of SONG institutionally. There are many political, economic, social and environmental issues of interest to our Chapter, and this committee will help us understand them and express our point of view. For more information, call Paul Bender, Secretary, Ottawa 224-1102.

Stoney Island Nut Grove

This grove was established in 1979, is about ½ mile from Lake Huron outside Kincardine, and owned by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. I attended the Annual Fall Meeting of our SONG mother organization. Unfortunately, the squirrels had beaten us to the Hazelnuts and Filberts, but a first crop of Heartnuts were duly admired. A few were smashed open, but not yet ripe! I hope the photographs I took are successful, to be shown at our Project Report Meeting on Wednesday evening, Nov. 27th, 1985.

Irmi Underwood, Convenor, Silviculture SIG.

Pruning & Fertilizing

Among those I had the pleasure of conducting around the Baxter Nut Grove at the SONG AGM on 27 July 85 was Douglas Campbell, Editor of the SONG Newsletter. Doug is one of Canada's leading experts on nut growing and he had much useful advice for us. Among the points he put to us:

Some basic principles in pruning for shape ... With most nut trees you want to achieve a long straight stem free of branches. But be patient, do not try to prune off the branches too soon; the tree needs them for development and balance. If you produce a long bare trunk on too slender a tree the wind will snap the top off! Keep the proportions of 1/3 bare, 2/3 branched. Be patient, too, in pruning the branches themselves. Take off only 1/3 of the length in the first year and the remainder in the second year.

Maintenance schedule for fertilising a nut grove ... A good general rule is to give one good treatment in the spring, as soon as you can work the ground. Use 10-10-10: for the small trees sprinkle about ½ lb. in a ring about 18" from the stem of the tree. For medium sized trees, spread 2 lb round the tree at the drip line. If observation indicates that a second treatment is needed, give this not later than the end of June

One exception to the rule of not fertilizing after the end of June is the case of the severely under- nourished tree, shown by its yellowing leaves. Treatment with fertilizer will do more good than harm, no matter how late it is in the season.

Alec Jones, Convenor, Horticulture SIG, Ottawa 828-6459.

Guidelines for the Collection of Hardwood Nuts and Seeds

The following paper by member Peter Janas, who is by profession the Head of Canada's National Tree Seed Bank, proposes a schema for classifying seed sites (e.g. Inventree sites). Peter asks that you study his schema and consider what questions need to be asked to implement the method.

  1. Collect seeds only in moderate to heavy crop years to ensure high germination, low percentage of empty or undeveloped seed, high seed yields and proportionately less insect infestation, and high genetic quality.
  2. Collect at time of physiological maturity, using indices such as seed colour and dryness, squirrel activity, calendar date, and time of first frost an initial seed fall. Cutting tests easily evaluate degree of ripeness and number of empty seeds.
  3. If possible, collect from well-stocked natural stands (50+ trees) or from plantations of known origin. Trees should have straight trunks, acceptable growth rate, and freedom from insect, disease or frost damage.

The stand collections in the table are proposed to ensure that the resultant plantations consist of at least 25 families and will therefore have the necessary genetic variability for survival and adaptability. More importantly, seeds collected from such plantations will also have satisfactory genetic quality and variability approaching that found in natural stands.

Proposed Classes for Hardwood Nut Collections:

Note: when bulking different stand collections (classes 2 to 5), try to ensure that natural and plantation collections are kept separate. Thus, the resultant plantation after sowing can be classed as a 1st or 2nd generation planting.

Provided by ECSONG. Feel free to copy with a credit.