The Nuttery : Volume 9 Number 2 April 1990

In this Issue...

The Baxter Spring Field Day will be held on Saturday May 5, 1990 starting at 10:00 AM at the Baxter Nut Grove, Baxter Conservation Area, about 3 miles south of Kars, Ontario. This field day gives all participants hands-on experience in most aspects of nut growing. Bring a lunch, refreshments, your gardening tools and any interested acquaintances. For more information call George Joiner, Gloucester 824-1284.

The Oak Valley Field Day will be held Saturday 12 May 1990 starting at 10:00 AM at the Oak Valley Plantation about 3 miles west of Winchester Springs, Ontario. This field day will give participants hands-on experience in transplanting young trees specially Black Walnuts. Bring a lunch, refreshments, your gardening tools and any interested acquaintances ... everyone welcome! For more information call Irene Woolford, Winchester 774-3385.

This issue of the Nuttery is more slender than usual. Work is underway to re-examine the Nuttery, and an Editorial Board will be formed to look into improvements. A new editor is being sought as well. Look for new directions in the near future. If you are interest in being on this board, and have not yet been asked, please call Hank Jones. The board is open to anyone wishing to see improvements or enhancements to the newsletter.

Look for the announcements of the two spring field days. You will find an article explaining the important purposes behind these field days. Also, you will find the announcement box with dates and times, and a map for each site. If you have any questions, call either George Joiner about the Baxter day or Irene Woolford about Oak Valley.

The calendar for the Chapter for 1990/91 is included. The executive have asked that each issue of the Nuttery show the calendar for all future planned meetings. This issue, consequently, shows the entire calendar for this year. As well, whatever details are know about any upcoming meeting will be published. Note that the dates for Executive meetings and Nuttery's are also given. This is to give you an opportunity to submit articles or information to the Nuttery, or to have items placed on the Executive agenda. If you have any questions or suggestions, please call any executive member.

The Siberian Connection has delivered to our doorstep some Manchurian Walnut and Carpathian Walnut seed. This seed must be distributed to the most benefit. Look for the article in the Nuttery Marketplace section. Commercial nut growing in Eastern Ontario is now foreseen. A committee of knowledgeable members is being formed to prepare the way. See the Chapter Projects section for details. Who serves nut growers in the area between Ottawa and Montreal, the extreme easterly corner of Ontario? Peruse the article on a possible extension of the Chapter area of interest to include this region in the General News section. Mark Schaefer, Chapter Vice-Chair, says the time has come to compile the history of the Baxter Nut Grove. See an outline of a proposed project in the Chapter Projects section.

Spring '90 Field Days - a time to learn

As usual, the Chapter is hosting two spring field days in May again this year. There is no formal meeting held during, or monetary charge for, these field days, so members are encouraged to bring friends, neighbours and relatives to participate. Usually, seed or spare stock is available for exchange.

The three main purposes of the spring field days.

Commercial Nutgrower Project

You may recall last year Alec Jones published a brief paper, entitled Whither Nut Growing in Eastern Ontario?, that was distributed with the Nuttery. In the paper, Alec identified three approaches to nut growing. The first stressed testing of exotic species. The second focussed on growing nut orchards. The third pressed for the re-integration of forest and agriculture in what has been called 'two-storey agriculture' or 'permanent agriculture'.

A number of Chapter members have indicated that they are seriously considering commercial nut growing on their lands. Some may be contemplating orchards, and others may be thinking of enhancing their woodlots. In either case, it appears the Chapter is now poised to embark on Alec's second approach and possibly on the third as well. This is new to the eastern Ontario region. We have the Nut Growers Manual for Eastern Ontario which covers the horticulture and silviculture of nut growing locally, but we do not have a handbook that covers the business of nut growing. For example, we have no indigenous information on the legal considerations, nor on marketing crops, and precious little on intercropping.

The Executive has direct the Chapter Chair, Hank Jones, to form a select committee to include, by invitation, Chapter members and outside advisors with specified skills or direct interest in this topic. It proposes the committee would prepare a table of contents of a handbook covering all aspects, from legal through technical, that the prospective commercial grower would need to know to succeed, starting from scratch. It also proposes the committee make recommendations on how the handbook itself might be compiled and when. The Executive foresees that the committee might complete the table of contents and recommendations in three meetings, spaced about 1-2 months apart.

The Chair plans to establish this committee early in June when the planting season is mostly over, and people will have time to participate. At the first meeting the committee will be asked to elect a committee chair and to confirm its terms of reference and its schedule. If you are interested in being on this committee, please contact Hank before the end of May.

Baxter History Project

The Baxter Nut Grove, at the Baxter Conservation Area between Kars and Kemptville, has been growing now since 1979. It started at the request of the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA). Though much has been written about the grove, its history has not been compiled. Mark Schaefer, Chapter Vice-Chair, proposes a project to undertake to publish, this year, the history of the Baxter Nut Grove. It is expected that the booklet will be a joint effort between the Chapter and the RVCA. It is planned to present the booklet to the Chapter and the RVCA at the Chapter's AGM of 1981, to be held in the new Interpretive Center at the Conservation Area.

As you will note, this year's annual Baxter Nut Grove Field Day is scheduled for Saturday 5 May. It is likely that most of the people who know the grove's history best will be there. What better place to kick off this project!

Come along on this field day, and get the lowdown on the grove, and see for yourself the magnificent growth the trees have made. It is possible there will be evidence of both leaf and flower.

Eastern Ontario Chapter Proposal

Moves are afoot to possibly consolidate certain Conservation Authorities in eastern Ontario. The Rideau Valley CA may merge with the Mississippi River CA, and the South Nation River CA with the Raisin River CA. The Chapter has always defined its area to coincide with the RVCA, MRCA and the SNRCA. New membership is coming from the Cornwall area which is in the RRCA area. The Chapter could redefine itself as coincident with the two new authorities, thereby also coming to serve the eastern end of Ontario. It has been proposed that the Chapter consider applying to SONG for permission to expand to cover the far eastern portion of Ontario, should members feel this could be beneficial. George Truscott, our Secretary, is looking into the matter. He will be consulting members of the RRCA area to see if they wish to be served by an expanded Ottawa area chapter, by their own chapter, or simply by membership in our parent SONG. If you would like to join the discussion, please contact George.

The Siberian Connection

As you may recall, the Chapter has been working towards a seed exchange program with the USSR. With the help of Trevor Cole, the curator of the Dominion Arboretum here in Ottawa, we have established a contact with a Mr. Koshelev living in Siberia. He is one of the very few tenant farmers in the USSR. He plans to develop nut trees in his region.

We have received our first shipment of seed from Mr. Koshelev. Alec Jones is the guardian. There is a small amount of two species: Juglans manchurica, the Manchurian Walnut (reminiscent of J. ailantifolia) and J. regia, the Carpathian Walnut, direct from the Carpathians. The latter nuts are smaller than store-bought varieties of walnut but still very attractive.

How should this seed be distributed to ensure maximum benefit from experimentation? George Truscott, our brand new Chapter secretary, will be looking into this matter. If you are interested in trying some of the seed, call Alec in Ottawa 828-6459 or George, Ottawa 733-4745.

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