The Nuttery : Volume 7 Number 1 February 1988

In this Issue...

The Chapter Annual General Meeting will be held at the Interpretive Center in the Baxter Conservation Area on Regional Road 13 about 2 miles south of Kars, on March 19, 1988, starting at 9:30 AM. Bring your own lunch. Refreshments will be available. Bring seed you wish to exchange. For more information, call Bob Scally, Kanata 592-1745

Black Walnuts prove delicious

Diane Fraser of Gloucester 744-6810 tells of collecting black walnuts from Mile Circle in Rockcliffe this fall to use in her family cookery. The first batch's husks were peeled fresh. Diane wore kitchen gloves to do the job, but Jean Osside, her mother, did not believe them necessary. Jean's hands and nails were stained a beautiful, indelible dark brown - just in time for her to go to a square dance that evening. Jean is now a firm believer in the tenacity of black walnut stain!

A second batch of nuts was put aside and the husks allowed to rot. This method proved to be messy as well, dribbling stain onto the floor. Also on the downside, a note of caution for those with respiratory sensitivity: some emanation from the rotting husks, maybe fungus spores, apparently irritated Diane's son Cameron's asthma.

Her father, Bob Osside, cracked enough of the dehusked seed in one hour in his basement vise to fill five 500 g yoghourt containers with meats. Diane reports that most of the pieces were quite large. Bob used them in his own recipes to make tantalizing confections such as Black Walnut Chocolate Fudge and Black Walnut Ice Cream Sauce. The sauce calls for an excess of brown sugar, which makes it slightly crunchy. He has also used black walnut as a snappy substitute for almonds and cashews in chicken and pork curries.

Plans are to also try black walnuts in a peach chutney recipe in the future. Sounds delicious! Lets hear from others also trying the walnuts, or butternuts, hickories, hazels, ginkgos etc. - we could be on our way to a second Chapter cookbook.

A Nut Growers Manual being written

The Chapter's Decennial Project (believe it or not, the Chapter's first meeting was held way back in 1979!) is to publish A Nut Growers Manual for Eastern Ontario by the end of this year. The manual will cover the basics of nut botany, horticulture and silviculture for new or experienced grower alike. The manual will prove useful to the home gardener as much as to the grower of plantations, groves or orchards, and possible future commercial growers in this region.

The information will be gathered from our own members and from other experts in industry, government and university. The Committee of Past Chairs, which is responsible for the project, has already begun by drafting an annotated table of contents for the manual. The final table will include all the specific topics the manual must address, guiding the acquisition and organization of the information that is expected to pour in. Mark Schaefer, our forestry expert, will be the manual's editor. He will prepare the final version of the manual's table of contents, which will be published in the next issue of the Nuttery. Also, he will stimulate the information inflow, and organize digesting the information into the Manual's format.

The Nuttery office will electronically publish the manuscript, in a style similar to our Chapter cookbook. Electronic publishing requires considerable less effort than traditional publishing methods, thereby allowing us to concentrate the major effort on gathering the information on nut growing. This balance of effort in favour of the stimulating process of information gathering over the arduous process of composing the information will allow more people to participate in the project because even a small contribution of time can have a big impact on the quality of the final Growers Manual.

Now is the time to get involved, to give guidance, to contribute technical information, or to volunteer your services to help the editor. Call Mark Schaefer at Kanata 836-3703.

ginkgo extracts

Bob Moodie sent in an article from Actualité, January 1988, which reports the discovery of PAF in ginkgos. This chemical has a number of medical uses, including treatment for asthma, several allergic reactions and anaphylactic shock. He is looking for more information on extracts from ginkgos. If you are interested, call Bob at Kanata, 592-5991. The article will be put in the Chapter's technical library, currently under the librarianship of Alec Jones, Ottawa 828-6459.

Photos Wanted for the Library

The Chapter's photograph collection has hundreds of photos, covering many aspects of nut tree management, as well as nearly 3 hours of VHS videotape. This graphic collection is seen as a source of illustrations for pamphlets, brochures, talks etc. It is available to all members through our photo librarian Bob Scally. Bob is now preparing an index of the collection. If you have material to submit, or wish to use the library, call Bob at Kanata, 592-1745.

General Rowley Reports

Roger Rowley of Rockcliffe reports mixed success with his two 7-year-old Carpathian Walnuts: he gets fruit set on one branch of the pair, but the fruit later aborts. However, his hazel shrubbery is now some 15' high. He wants to talk with anyone knowing about these species, to ensure the best cultivation is given his plants. Roger can be reached at 745-7770. It is likely that the Chapter's technical library has information on these matters.

Participate in Spring Planting '88

Traditionally, the Chapter has arranged two silviculture days on the first two Saturdays of May at the Baxter Nut Grove. These two field days serve to both advance the work of the Nut Grove and to give neophyte nut growers a chance of hands-on learning from the masters who manage the grove.

This coming year, there will be two sites available for silviculture and horticulture exercise. The South Nation Plantation will be the second one. At present it has only a nursery bed, but in 1988, we will begin to plant out Black Walnut into the plantation site. For more information, call George Joiner re Baxter at Ottawa 749-2468, and call Irene Woolford re the South Nation Plantation at Winchester 774-3385.

The Baxter Nut Grove is still missing a number of species from its list of planned plantings. If you can provide any of the missing species, please call George as soon as possible.

Getting Seed and Stock

Do you have surplus seed or stock to pass to other members? Do you want seed or stock of particular species or varieties that others may have to give? Write or phone the editor of the Nuttery and it will be published as a Want Ad in the next issue, in time for the planting season this spring. Spring is coming soon, with planting possible by late April. The seed you get or give may need to be stratified. Do not wait. Get started right now!

Most members are interested in getting seed or stock to plant, so a reminder that seed and stock exchanges are held at every Chapter meeting.

Winter Meeting Report

The Winter meeting this year was held at the Citizen building on Baxter Road in Ottawa on January 20th. About a dozen members, including at least one new member, were able to attend. Dur the mid-meeting break, the kitchen was open for coffee and several tasty nut cakes were presented.

The Wednesday evening's meeting centered on two talks. Bob Scally updated information on the growth of Black Walnuts using techniques being tested by Fred Von Athelton in southern Ontario. These show that the main difficulty the trees face is competition with grass while they are seedlings. If the grass is completely removed, the young trees make fast growth and continue to stay ahead of others that started in grass. The second talk, by Alec Jones, explained the "Newfoundland Connection", a Chapter project to send nut seed to Newfoundland for an arboretum there. His text and slides illustrated the conditions of tree growing in western Newfoundland. He explained that our Chapter helps the Newfoundland Department of Forest Resources and Lands because the climatic zones of eastern Ontario and western Newfoundland are very similar. The project is proving quite successful and should be continued.

During the break, the Nuttery editor, Hank Jones, demonstrated how his MacIntosh computer is used to publish the Nuttery. He also explained that the computer could help other Chapter projects. He specially mentioned artificial intelligence programs for helping young members learn about and identify nut trees, indexing to Inventree, and recording the landscape design, including both text and maps, for the Baxter Nut Grove.

Thanks to Paul Bender for booking the hall, and to Kathleen Jones for providing the goodies.

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