The Spring Flower And Garden Show
The SONG nut display presided over by President John Gordon was a glorious success at
the Spring Flower and Garden Show held at the Canadian National Exhibition Park,
Toronto, March 1-5, 1978. More than 300 people spent several moments at the nut display booth
and of those 25 were sufficiently interested to become members of SONG. Several types of
Ontario grown nuts were on display in bushel quantities. The display was regarded as sufficiently
unique that John was asked for an interview with Radio Noon of the CBC. This publicity
brought in many more requests for information about SONG. John also received many interesting
reports from nut growers of which the following is just a sample:
(a) A butternut tree is growing in Chapleau.
(b) Black walnuts are reported growing in the Barrie, Orillia, Owen Sound, Collingwood and Peterborough areas.
(c) Two hardy and productive buartnuts are growing north of Ottawa.
(d) Several producing trees of Persian Walnut are growing close to the lakeshore areas of Georgian Bay near Collingwood and Owen Sound.
(e) Heartnuts from SONG's 1975-76 distribution program are doing well in northern centers such as Walkerton and Orillia ...
Spring Auction Meeting
The Spring Auction Meeting held at the Civic Garden Center, Don Mills was attended by 110 enthusiastic nut growers. There were several hundred nut trees up for auction. Each species of nut tree which will thrive in Ontario was up for sale in generous quantities as well as nut seed and miscellaneous crafts. All the nut growers in attendance marvelled at the attractive facilities of the Civic Garden Center. It's even more impressive to note that the Center is supported entirely by a volunteer organization. Many nut growers enjoyed leisurely strolls through the numerous plantings after the Auction was completed.
Sixth Annual Meeting of SONG
More than fifty people gathered at the St. Williams Nursery of the Ministry of Natural Resources on Saturday, July 29, 1978 for the Sixth Annual Meeting of SONG. In addition to the business meeting there were several tours starting with a walking review of the several seedling fields managed by the St. Williams Nursery under the direction of Rulf Laupert. Thousands of young conifers and deciduous seedlings were viewed and the cultural techniques were described by Mr. Laupert. Then Rick Lambert took the group to see a mature stand of black walnut as well as a more recent planting. Both plantings were established to produce quantities of the highly valued timber. SONG is indebted to Rulf Laupert and Rick Lambert for their efforts which made the Sixth Annual Meeting such a pleasurable day.
The Business Meeting produced the following results:
|Election and Confirmation of Officers (1978 - 79)|
|Charles Rhora||Vice President|
|F. R. Park||Director|
|Election And Confirmation of The Nominating Committee (1978 - 79)|
Petition For Recognition of "The Ottawa Area Chapter"
A group of SONG members from the Ottawa area have petitioned SONG to grant them "Chapter Status" so that among other things they may relate more effectively with the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority to establish a demonstration planting of northern nut trees. The petition received a favourable vote. Also several constitutional changes were received favourably and these changes allow for numerous Chapters to be created in Ontario, the several other Canadian Provinces and in other nations.
Executive Officers - Ottawa Area Chapter
The following officers have been elected to represent the newly formed Ottawa Area Chapter of the Society of Ontario Nut Growers: Mr. F. R. Park, Chairman, Mr. A. C. Jones, Secretary/Treasurer
The original proposal for Chapter Status for the Ottawa Area is reproduced herein as information for all interested SONG members and also as a model for future requests for Chapter Status:
Proposal to the Society of Ontario Nut Growers concerning the establishment of an Ottawa Area Chapter of SONG Submission to the Annual General Meeting of SONG by an ad-hoc Group of Ottawa Area members, 1978.
Following a meeting of as many of the SONG members in the Ottawa area as could be easily convened, it was concluded that
It was, therefore, decided to ask SONG to approve the formation of a Chapter of the Society in the Ottawa area.
Resolution by the ad-hoc group of Ottawa area members.
The Society of Ontario Nut Growers is hereby requested to approve the following.
Memoirs of Echo Valley. 1978
"A man over 80 years old should plant nut trees. A fellow who lives that long obviously has had such a vigorous and pehaps even prodigal youth that he owes something to the next generation." George H. Corsan
If the weather of September 30, 1978 in the Borough of Etobicoke held any secret meaning, it must have been that George Corsan's middle name was sunshine. More than 90 people gathered at Echo Valley on that date to view the many nut trees which were planted by George Corsan. Clear blue skies and brilliant sun favoured the nut growers throughout the day. The view of the Valley was simply gorgeous and it was obvious to everyone why George dedicated so much of his efforts to the planting of unusual trees ... more than 21 different species!
Kathryn Lamb gave a brief history of the Echo Valley plantings dating back to 1912. Horace Troup described the many varieties of nut trees which George recommended for planting and Horace had generous samples of the nuts from his own plantings to demonstrate their worth. John Gordon, Doug Campbell and Ernie Grimo identified numerous of the nut trees and explained to the crowd what to look for when trying to identify nut trees. Bill Hambleton had quantities of Carpathian Walnuts for sale and the trees which produced the nuts had been transplanted from George's Echo Valley Nursery some 30 years ago.
Members of the Toronto Field Naturalists Club accompanied the nut growers on this occasion. It is their objective to label the many nut and fruit trees which grow in Echo Valley. In this respect it's comforting to know that the Borough of Etobicoke is maintaining Echo Valley as a public park for the inspiration and enjoyment of the current generation and many more to come.
Although there were several children present on this occasion, there were indications that many in attendance had passed middle age some years before ... (my definition of middle age being five years older than I am!) No doubt George Corsan was entirely correct in suggesting that the desire for planting trees increases with age. We should cherish the example set by George and strive constantly to instill an appreciation of Nature's finest trees in our children and their childrens' children.
The Glory of a Tree
Mine eyes have seen the glory
Which shineth from a tree
Which through the years I'd overlooked;
Was blind but now I see.
George Hebden Corsan -- Part III
Corsan joined the Northern Nut Growers' Association in 1912 and was a member until his death on January 31, 1952, with the exception of the years 1930-35. He often attended the annual meetings and gave reports of his experiments at Echo Valley and later, his Florida property. The following are excerpts from the NNGA annual reports:
1912: Corsan says there is no chestnut blight in Canada. "We have a blight in Ontario that has attacked the Lombardy poplar and looks similar to the chestnut blight. I have been watching it for 10 years and the tree seems to have at last outlived it ... We can grow chestnut trees but no one has brains enough to grow them ... farmers don't bother with chestnut trees."
He recommended planting nuts on roadsides, in fence corners, etc., advising people to take a handful of nuts and a cane when they go out walking and occasionally stick one in.
1914: "The following seedlings lived through the winter: Pecans; Pinus edulis; Pinus koriensis; chestnuts, filberts; all the Juglans including California and Canadian seed of regia; pawpaws; persimmons. My Pomeroy walnuts are having a struggle to keep good form but I think I will have a few hardy ones selected from them."
"I am certain from my observations all over northeastern North America that the pecan has far more possibilities than the English walnut or any other nut, unless we develop a blight proof chestnut."
"The north Chinese walnut has been doing wonderfully well in Toronto and those two trees 15 and 17 feet high have not a twig killed. They do not bear as early as the Japanese. Their leaves are much longer than the English walnut but the nut is fully as good as the best California, Persian walnut that has ever reached the market. Their appearance is almost the same as the English but the tree is much hardier, growing at the extreme north of China. This is the tree that the nurserymen of Ontario have been selling as "English" walnuts ... as soon as we saw the leaf and the trunk we at once knew them for north Chinese walnuts and upon being told that, the men acknowledged that they were."
1915: He reported that he was experimenting with 13 varieties of pecans. The best were Major, Posey and Niblack.
1922: Corsan was introduced as the "Canadian Johnny Appleseed." He said "I first devoted 12 acres to the culture of nut trees ... added four more. I just planted seedlings. In 1912 I planted 100 chestnut trees. When I found the blight was in them, I cut them all down but two. I have those two now and last year I gathered a peck of very large chestnuts from them which caused the Ontario government to take notice of what I was doing."
"I had a hard fight with Pomeroy's trees (walnuts) ... but each year they increased a little in size and now they are over my head and are not dying down at all."
"I tried seedling English walnuts from St. Catharines. They did not freeze down at all, but whether they will throw as good a nut as Mr. Pomeroy's I don't know. They are certainly a different nut. I got a Chinese walnut at Black's Nursery, Highstown NJ, and it is growing remarkably well."
In 1928 when the Northern Nut Growers' Association members visited Echo Valley, they saw Thomas and Ohio black walnuts; Siers, Fairbanks and Laney hickories; Chinese walnuts (rare); hybrid chestnuts, seedling heartnuts from Virginia sources, filberts, pecans and Turkish tree hazel (rare).
1937: "Echo Valley, 20 acres, has protection from north winds ... very rich soil, some pockets of humus 7-1/2 feet deep and grass grows up to my shoulder and weeds away up over my head ... I use the mulch system to cultivate my trees as advised by my good friend the late John F. Jones."
"Just after the war I planted many nuts which are now large trees. The hickories grew about a foot a year, the pecans two feet a year, the Chinese English walnut about four feet a year, the Japanese walnuts five feet a year, the Manchurian walnuts six feet a year and the Turkish tree hazel one foot a year. Thus my trees range from 20 - 50 feet high. On these trees I graft anywhere from one to nine named varieties of nuts."
"My European-American hybrid chestnuts have mostly succumbed to the blight, but three I got from the late Mr. Riehl refuse to die and each year yield an enormous crop of nuts ..."
"In grafting I find that I secure 100% of black walnuts on black walnut and 40 to 60% for Circassian walnut on black walnut, from 25 to 40% of hickory on hickory and 60 to 100% of hickory on pecan."
"The Japanese walnut takes the Japanese heartnut if put on by side and plain splice graft, but not by cleft nor crown grafting. I have had very fair success budding filberts but have yet to find out about budding other nut trees."
1938: "Twenty years ago a gentleman at Beamsville sent me more than a peck of splendid-sized Japanese heartnuts (Juglans cordiformis). I planted these nuts here and there on my acres. They grew fast and are now large trees, though never cultivated, and most of the time quite neglected as I was away, even six years at a stretch ... the six best bear a nut that is undoubtedly a cross between our native butternut and the mother tree, a Japanese heartnut. These six trees are exceedingly hardy. The nuts ripen three weeks before the black walnut and thus escape entirely any early October frost ... They are all regular annual bearers and never have an off year. The trees are decidedly healthier than our native butternut ... all have much thinner shells than our native butternuts and larger meats. The trees themselves are indistinguishable from Japanese walnuts (J. sieboldiana) or Japanese heartnuts (J. cordiformis) but are stouter and wider than butternuts (J. cinerea) ... While the Japanese walnut will grow in clusters of 24, and Japanese heartnuts in clusters of 10, these hybrids grow only in clusters of six or seven ... Give me no credit for these six trees as they just happened!
"Regarding budding, I find that between the third week of July and the middle of August some nut trees accept buds 100% and this is far easier than grafting. But bud-sticks cannot be sent away ... this is a great disadvantage as grafts can be sent a considerable distance if sent in March or April."
"My system of budding I can teach anyone in five minutes. My procedure is thus: Procure a pound tin of pure Latex (liquid rubber) from the Vicerory Mfg. Co., West Toronto. They sell the milk-white kind and not the destructive amber fluid. The right kind smells strongly of ammonia and costs 90c per pound and will last you the entire three week's budding season, budding every day. Keep the top on the can and don't leave it out in the hot sun. I use a stick to put on the Latex and use a regular German budding knife, having a pointed brass end for opening the T-cut. I also use 2-1/2 inch, thin rubber bands; I prefer the red rubber, 40c a quarter-pound retail at most drugstores."
"When I cut the buds off I try not to leave too big a hole where the bud is attached to the wood base and cut this little tit off, leaving it not on the wood but in the bud, otherwise I have no wood attaching to the inside of the bud."
"English walnut buds on black walnut readily. My hybrid nuts bud on butternut, heartnut and Japanese walnuts. Hickory and hican bud on pecan. I bud green buds on green wood; and green wood buds on two or even three-year-old wood."
1940: "The past winter has been unique because of its severity and the absence of snow ... The result was that all my four varieties of eulalia froze dead. Some of my pawpaws and persimmons were killed. But, astounding to say, all my Chinese jujubes lived through and came out in the spring in most excellent shape. Nine varieties (of walnuts) froze back one inch, while the rest of my 80 varieties from Russia came out from the tip top buds and are in perfect shape. My small Chinese sweet chestnuts froze back a few inches while my medium-sized and large trees did not freeze a bud."
"The hickory crop is large and for the first time I have quite a number of varieties of Means in fruit."
1942: "Here, just west of Toronto and north of Lake Ontario, this first day of fall, 1942, the
Thomas black walnuts are just ripe and the crop is very good. The Winkler hazelnuts are almost
ripe and waiting for a frost to loosen them in their husks. The butternuts are bare of leaves and
the nuts are still hanging on, though ripe some 10 days ago. All of some score or more varieties
of the European filberts have been gathered. One variety was ripe and gathered on August 28.
Hybrids between our native butternuts and the Japanese heartnuts, to the number of six varieties,
are fully ripe but not all fallen. The Japanese heartnuts are ripe but not fallen. Stratford hickories
are fully ripe and falling. The larger hickories will not be ripe until mid-October, and the same
with the chestnuts, though some varieties may ripen in early October."
(to be continued)
Katheryn Lamb, Kitchener ON
Northern Nut Growers Meet at East Lansing
Members of the Northern Nut Growers Association assembled from far and wide to have their 69th Annual Meeting at East Lansing, Michigan, August 20 - 23, 1978. Twenty-seven articles on nut growing were presented on subjects ranging from grafting techniques, selecting hardier Carpathian walnuts to curing chestnut blight cankers ... etc. The Tuesday evening Banquet was a sensational success too. Bud Guest, author of the book and also the radio program, "On the Sunny Side of the Street", was the guest speaker and offered a marvellous collection of humorous anecdotes to the delight of all in attendance. The Wednesday tour focussed upon the activities of the Greenhaven Nursery established by Lee Somers, Perrinton, Michigan. This nursery has distributed thousands of hardy Carpathian walnut seedlings and nuts throughout the United States and Canada.
Several new projects were undertaken by the Northern Nut Growers and these will have significant benefit for all nut growers in the north temperate zone:
(1) Index of Northern Nut Trees
Les Wilmoth of Kentucky is chairing a work group to compile a list of some of the better nut cultivars with descriptions of their outstanding merits.
(2) Nut Tree Inventory
Gary Fernald of Illinois is chairing a work group to compile a list of who is growing what nut trees in the northern zones of North America. This study will reveal sources of scion wood and nuts.
(3) Pecan Seed Distribution Program
Doug Campbell of Ontario and John Gordon of New York are organizing a distribution program to make available hardy strains of pecan for northern growers. More details are in the following article.
Pecans Which Grow in the North
There is one nut tree which is so widely appreciated that merely the mention of its name brings forth instant recognition and enthusiasm. That noteworthy nut producer is the pecan. Countless millions of consumers have been delighted with such delicacies as pecan pie, pecan pralines, pecan log rolls and the occasional pecan intermingled in mixed nuts.
Many people picture the pecan as a majestic, southern tree which prospers in the rich bottom lands adjacent to quietly flowing rivers. The States of Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana ... boast some marvellous old specimens of pecan ranging in age to as much as 500 years. Older trees may be up to 180 feet in height with trunks 6 feet in diameter! The impressive stature, strength of wood, long life expectancy and the prolific production of delicious kernels of the pecan justify its reputation as the noblest nut tree of them all.
Although many people recognize the pecan as a tree of the South, relatively few are aware that it is also a tree of the North. Today an interested explorer can find native stands of pecan along the Missouri River in north-central Missouri and along the Mississippi River near Dubuque, Iowa. The early settlers reported finding pecans along the Ohio River as far north as Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Many of these trees have fallen to the lumberman's axe. However there are still a few, scattered trees of native pecan as far north as southern Wisconsin!
The way in which the pecan species became distributed throughout the North American Continent is one of the most fascinating studies of natural history. Examination of fossil remains in the southern States indicates that the pecan probably originated in areas of northern Texas and southern Oklahoma. Prior to the 18th century the American Indians were primarily responsible for the substantial increase in the growing range of the pecan. In the south-central areas of the USA the pecan was a staple component of the Indian diet. The nuts were easy to collect, highly nutritious and could be kept for extended periods of time ... an important consideration in the pre-refrigerator era. An ample store of pecans was good insurance against hard times during the months of the year when other sources of food were scarce. Moreover the Indians of the South traded the pecans with the Northern Indians for other goods such as furs, flint, tobacco or even a good pipe! It is believed that when the Indians were travelling, they planted pecan nuts in the vicinity of their campsites to provide "grubstakes" for their future descendants. Since the Mississippi and its dozens of tributaries were the canoe-highways of the Indians, the Mighty River also provided the inroads for the spread of pecan growing over hundreds, possibly thousands of miles of waterway country. Paint yourself a picture of occasional fleets of dugout canoes, of hastily constructed campsites along the banks of the Mighty River, of chatting tribesmen gathered around the dancing flames of campfires and in that picture you have an instant history of the early travels of the pecan.
When the Indians planted nuts in the vicinity of their campsites, they preferred to plant the biggest and the thinnest-shelled selections because in those days of rudimentary cracking tools, a large, thin-shelled nut was a considerable attraction. Thus the Indian tribes not only greatly increased the growing range of the pecan but also through their haphazard selection and planting activities, greatly improved the general quality of their favourite nut. It is interesting to note that the word pecan comes from an approximate rendition of the Indian work "paccan", food which has to be cracked out of a hard shell.
It is fascinating to observe that the Indians must have had some favoured stopover points in which they re-established campsites many times and consequently had more than just a few nut planting ceremonies. Pecan nuts which were planted in the rich shorelands of the Mississippi system prospered magnificently and grew into astonishingly huge trees ... even in the more northern areas. Several of these extensive nut groves still exist in all their primitive glory for the observation and inspiration of modern day nut growers.
Since the pecan has acclimatized to so many localities beyond the confines of its original birth place, the question begs to be answered ... can the pecan adapt to the many northern States and even southern parts of Canada? Although the pecan has a reputation as a bit of a traveller to many different latitudes, the species does tend to have a few hesitations about discarding all of its southern traditions. Some of the general characteristics of the pecan which confirm its southern origin are:
If the pecan is to adapt to the latitudes of the true north, it is clear that careful selection of seed sources and nursery stock must be made. Furthermore, Nature has provided an ideal mechanism for the remodelling of any botanical species ... regeneration of the species via seedling reproduction. Therein lies infinite potential for redistribution of genetic combinations in order to allow adaptation of the species to the ever changing climates, habitats and other growing conditions. It is a most useful object lesson that the early settlers of southern Indiana and Illinois were able to select some of the better, earlier ripening types of native pecan growing on the adjacent shoreland of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. These selections produce good nuts nearly comparable in size to the southern sorts for the residents of southern Indiana and Illinois. In addition some of the earliest ripening selections from this group will produce well filled pecans in a majority of seasons in the extreme northwest corner of Ohio as demonstrated by Art Weaver, a member of the Northern Nut Growers Association.
But the true gems of the pecan species for northern climates reside in the native stands hidden away in the rugged forests of southern Wisconsin and the most northern parts of Iowa and Illinois. These native pecans occur up to 300 miles north of the points of origin of the currently available and commercially distributed "northern pecans". These recent discoveries offer the promise of adapting the pecan to much more northern climates than ever was realized previously. Already several members of the Northern Nut Growers Association (NNGA) ... a non-profit group dedicated to the promotion of nut growing in the North ... have initiated exploratory expeditions into this extreme northern range of the pecan. The authors of this article in the company of Gary Fernald, Ken Fritz and Bill Totten of Illinois, George James of Missouri, Jon Jacobson of Iowa, have made discoveries which are both interesting and exciting. Substantial stands of productive and early ripening pecans have been found. Although the nuts are somewhat smaller than the "papershell pecans" of their southern cousins, there is a major compensation ... the tasty kernels are some of the sweetest known to exist anywhere!
The NNGA members who have been carrying out the exploratory work, have been searching for the following characteristics which will make the pecan adaptable to the more northern locations:
The success of these exploratory expeditions has evolved into a Seed Distribution Program of Northern Pecans to be undertaken for the benefit of current NNGA members and the general public. This program is sponsored by the NNGA as a public service venture for the operating year 1978 - 79. The conditions of this unique offer are summarized as follows:
As an introductory offer, the Northern Nut Growers Association makes the following available to new members:
|1 Packet of 8 Northern Pecan Seeds||$ 2.00|
|Total||$12.00 (Canadian currency)|
It should be remembered when trees are grown from seed, that there will be a wide range of characteristics in the resulting seedlings. There will be noticeable differences in growth rates, ripening season of the nuts, tree form etc. Many of the parent trees which produced the nut seed for this offer, have experienced and survived winter temperatures as low as -35°F and also have ripened well filled nuts in seasons as short as 130 frost-free days.
The few remaining pecans in the most northern parts of the native range (Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Wisconsin) are found in the bottom land areas immediately adjacent to rivers. These areas are also rich prospects for corn lands and the pressure to eliminate the majestic old pecan trees is great. This seed offer may be the last opportunity to save and regenerate this hardiest source of the Northern Pecan.
The pecan is a uniquely North American tree. Nothing else quite like it has been discovered
anywhere else in the world. The pecan is one of the very few North American species which has
been recognized as having major agricultural significance for feeding the hungry populations of
the world. Horticulturists of many nations have viewed the pecan with covetous intentions and
this has caused the species to be introduced on an experimental basis into most of the temperate
zone countries around the globe. Would you like to share in the adventure of adapting the noblest
of all the nut trees to the latitudes of the True North?
Douglas Campbell, Niagara-on-the-Lake ON
John Gordon Jr., North Tonawanda NY
Nut Pines = Pine Nuts
Have you ever been asked to pass the pine nuts? Not very likely, unless of course you are having dinner in Korea with your Korean friends. Yes, unbelievably so, some pine trees have nuts, edible nuts, nutritious nuts, wingless nuts and they are even considered to be delicious nuts. In fact, if you lived in Asia between latitudes 35 and 70 , you would be familiar with one or all of the three nut pines which are native to the northern half of that vast continent. You might also be surprised to know that all three species belong to the five needle pines and hence are related to our native white pine (Pinus strobus). However, the nut pines are not as susceptible to the white pine blister rust as our native five needle pines, which is in their favour. Another surprise, they shed their leaves (needles) like such hardwoods as maple but only once every two to six years depending on the species. Although all three species do not bear cones until they are at least 20 years old, nevertheless cone initiation can be accelerated by grafting flower bearing scions on to young seedlings. The three pines also have something else in common; namely their cones remain closed at maturity and will generally remain closed after falling to the ground much to the disgust of our little four footed friends, the red squirrel.
The Korean pine (Pinus koraiensis) is the most southerly of the three pines. It grows in Korea, Japan, northern China and southeastern Siberia, indicating that it could be planted in southern Ontario from Lake Erie to North Bay for both nut and timber production. Some trees obtain a diameter of from 3 ft. to 6 ft. and a height of 120 ft. when planted in deep, well drained, sandy loams. Apparently this species will develop root rot and die if planted in wet soils. As for nut production, the tree starts producing six inch cones in about 20 years. Each one contains approximately 159 wingless nutlets which weigh about 2 oz. Trees in the wild stands in Asia will have from 25 to 200 cones per tree once every two to three years depending on the age of the tree and the growing conditions. To collect these cones you must climb the tree in October and November and pluck them off the branches at the top of the tree or if you are lucky enough to have a pet red squirrel (most of us have at least one), it will cut them off for you as the little critters did for us in Orono in 1976.
A maximum of 440 lb. of nutlets per acre have been recorded from wild stands. This is equivalent to about 350 lb. of shelled nuts which are retailing in Toronto at $5.50 per lb.
These nutlets not only provide food for humans and wildlife but the oils which they contain can be used for industrial purposes.
The Siberian pine (Pinus sibirica) as the name implies, grows under rather cold conditions. So if any of you live between Barrie and Timmins you are in a position to plant this multi-purpose species. This tree can be planted in dry sands or in wet podsolic swamps with equal success. You may expect to harvest the two to five inch long cones with the help of red squirrels of course within 25 years of planting. Seed years occur every three to five years. The seed is smaller than Korean pine with almost 2300 seeds per lb. as compared to 2000 nutlets per lb. for Korean pine. Maximum yield per acre is also slightly less than Korean pine, being 325 lb./acre. In virgin forests, the seed is extracted, consumed and distributed by birds, squirrels and bears. Nutritional studies indicate that on the average, the endosperm contains 60% oil, 17% protein, 12% starch, 2% pentosans, 2% minerals and a considerable amount of vitamin B. Oil and resin extracts are also used in the manufacture of fine lacquers, pharmaceutical products and perfumes. The trees are somewhat smaller than Korean pine, being only about 100 feet tall. However, the wood is highly prized for its excellent physical and mechanical properties being used in construction and for pencils and furniture.
The third and last of the nut pines is the dwarf stone pine (Pinus pumila). It is the most northerly of the three pines occurring not only on the Siberian tundra but also near the mountain tops. So if any of you in SONG live between Timmins and Hudson Bay or in Slave Lake or in the Rocky Mountains near the tree line, this is your tree. It also will grow in dry sands, stony loams as well as in wet podsolic swamps. In natural stands, seed production starts when the tree is about 30 years old. The cones are small being up to 2 inches long and contain only 38 nutlets which is equivalent to 4530 seeds per lb. with an average yield in a mature stand of 44 to 176 lb. per acre. The seed contains up to 48% oil as well as protein, starch and vitamins. Heavy seed years occur every two to three years. This dwarf species performs several important ecological functions in the arctic by controlling erosion and providing shelter and food for wildlife. Hopefully within the next five years all three Asian nut pine species will be tested by members of SONG and by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources for their hardiness, site adaptability and eventually their productivity on certain agricultural and forest lands in Canada.
If any of you wish further information on these three potentially valuable nut species please write to the Ontario Forest Research Centre, Ministry of Natural Resources, Maple, Ontario, LOJ 1EO, for a free copy of the research publication entitled: Potential for Growing Nut Pines in Ontario by H. C. Larsson and P. Jaciw.
What's it All Worth
Have you ever wondered what are the nut eating habits of Canadians? It's relatively easy to determine because the great bulk of nuts eaten in Canada are imported and the Dominion Bureau of Statistics keeps rather close tabs on what happens at the borders. Here is a summary of the dollar value of the nuts which Canadians preferred to eat in the calendar year 1976:
|Brazil Nuts||$ 7893388.|
|Filberts||$ 1,176, 554.|
|Miscellaneous (not peanuts)||$ 3,460,752.|
|Brazil Nuts||$ 1,323,269.|
|Miscellaneous (not peanuts)||$ 3,940,275.|
|As Compared To:|
|Orange Juice and|
Prairie Walnut Seed Distribution Report
The walnut crop from Morden, Manitoba has arrived and all outstanding seed request have now been filled, swelling our total to over 500 applicants. File cards have been made out on all applicants with the intention of keeping records on the resulting trees over the years. We will provide the first questionnaire in one year from now to determine the germination success and survival rate of the trees.
As a test sample, I planted a short row of nuts that were received from last year. Germination was excellent. The trees, particularly the black walnut showed their northern adaptation quite remarkably. They were completely defoliated and dormant by the end of September while local natives were in leaf for a month or more longer. Though these black walnuts appear small, their thin shells and good cracking quality yield an abundance of mild, fine tasting kernels. These hardy, drought resistant productive trees are truly a remarkable strain.
Since I received a good supply of seed I still have some left. I will continue to send out 4 seeds for $1.00 of black walnut or Manchurian Walnut as long as supplies last. Priority treatment will be given to last year's Prairie applicants who wish to try again or to add to their planting. A limit of 12 nuts per applicant will be imposed to prevent the supply from disappearing too quickly. Enough seed remains for about 200 applicants. Please let me know how well your seed germinated when you write. Of course, new applicants are also welcome.
For those who would like to take a short cut, my seedlings are for sale at $3.00 each postage included. I have limited numbers of Prairie black walnut, butternut and Manchurian walnut. Write to: R.R.#3, Lakeshore Road, Niagara-on-the-Lake ON LOS 1JO
Heartnut Distribution Questionnaire #2
Roy Metcalfe has mailed out the second questionnaire for participants in the Heartnut Distribution Program to describe their experiences with the heartnut seed. If you have not received your questionnaire and want to participate, please direct your inquiries to the following : Roy Metcalfe, 2680 Canberra Road, Mississauga ON L5W 7M7
Book Review - Syrup Trees
The tingle of early spring weather, the pungent smells of burning wood and the spectacle of rich amber syrup being poured into waiting containers are some of the thoughts which Bruce Thompson has captured in his new book titled: Syrup Trees. This book describes in detail the primary collection of sap, what equipment to buy and where to buy it. Details are given both for hobbyists as well as those with commercial objectives. An ample section of syrup recipes is included. The price is US$7.70, postpaid. Publisher: Walnut Press, P.O. Box 17210, 12012 W. Saguaro Blvd., Fountain Hills AZ USA 85268
Three More Nut Groves for Ontario
Three more nut groves are being planned by Conservation Authorities for three uniquely different regions throughout Ontario. A progress report on these developments is as follows:
Essex Region Conservation Authority
A four acre site has been set aside in the Cedar Creek conservation area at the corner of Highway 18 and County Road 23 located in Essex County. Mr. Henrik Hover is the Resources Technician of the Authority who will be managing this nut planting project. Mr. Hoyer has extended an invitation to SONG to have an Inaugural Tree Planting Ceremony at this site for early spring of 1979. Since Essex County has one of the most favourable climates for growing nut trees in Canada, this future nut grove offers exceptional opportunities to see the rare and exotic types of nut trees growing and producing excellent nut crops in Ontario. More details of this development will be made available in the spring meeting notice.
Saugeen Valley Conservation Authority
A one acre site has been set aside for the planting of nut trees in the Stoney Island conservation area property adjacent to Lake Huron and several miles north of Douglas Point. The trees which will be selected for the initial planting will consist of selections of: black walnut, Persian walnut, Japanese walnut, butternut, heartnut, shagbark hickory, shellbark hickory, American chestnut, Chinese chestnut, American hazel, European filbert, Korean pine and beech. Mr. James Penner is the Conservation Services Technician who will be managing this project. It is planned that the first plantings will made in spring of 1979.
Rideau Valley Conservation Authority
A five acre site has been set aside in the Baxter conservation area for the purpose of establishing a nut grove of trees hardy in the Ottawa district. In this instance Mr. F. R. Park and Mr. A. C. Jones, Chairman and Secretary/Treasurer respectively of the Ottawa Area Chapter of SONG will be working in close co-operation with the Rideau Authority to work out the details of the planting. Since this experimental nut grove will be the furthest north of all the current conservation authority plantings, the success of this venture will be of extreme interest to all of the nut growers in northern Ontario.
Contributions for Conservation Wanted
There are several Conservation Authorities which are attempting to establish nut groves in the Spring of 1979. Any nut tree materials which you wish to donate to these efforts will be much appreciated. Particularly grafted trees or seedlings of known cultivars are of most value for these experimental plantings. SONG members who wish to make donations of tree materials can do so directly to the respective Authorities or the donations can be co-ordinated via the attention of the following: R. V. Campbell, R.R.#7, Niagara-on-the-Lake ON LOS 1JO
Messages to the Editor
I'm still doing a lot of plant breeding and selection and have many trees and plants scattered
around the country on farms etc. I've always been interested in nut trees and black walnut and
butternut are wonderful trees in certain locations in Saskatchewan. When I was at the Morden,
Manitoba Experiment Station, I planted hardy selections of native hazel from several points
throughout the Prairies. These were hand pollinated with pollen from tree hazels, hazelberts and
filberts from the New York Experiment Station. Some true hybrids resulted and these were
planted out in a shelterbelt about one mile long at Sutherland, Saskatchewan. These produced
large quantities of well filled nuts and the best of these were saved to grow seedlings. The
resulting seedlings were distributed to widely scattered points throughout the Prairies
unfortunately without keeping records of where they went. Some nuts were produced this year on
the bushes at Sutherland. We have a problem with weevils in the hazels here and many of the
nuts will be infested. Little spraying is done to control insects in the West. I think that the same
sprays which are used for curculio on plums will control these weevils.
W. L. Kerr, Christopher Lake, R.R. Neis Beach, SK S0J 0N0
I heard SONG President, John Gordon talking on the "Radio Noon" show of the CBC
concerning the planting of nut trees in Ontario. We have a 100 acre farm and want to plant some
appropriate selections of nut trees. Please send us more details.
Mrs. D. Rokeby-Thomas, Palmerston ON
I germinated some chestnuts this past season and am now curious to see how seedlings will
survive their first Nova Scotia winter. There is always a chance that some of them will survive. I
enjoy taking chances and experimenting I
F. C. Carter, Lower Sackville NS
I'm a retiring farmer and a tree growing hobbyist. I've got around 200 nut trees of bearing size,
some as old as 38 years. These consist of Carpathian walnut, Japanese walnut, filberts and
Herman McConnell, Heathcote ON
Please consider writing up an article on Nut Growing in Ontario for our publication: "The
Ontario Naturalist". Many of our members are fond of hiking through the wildland areas and they
would benefit from the ability to recognize the native nut trees.
Judith Parsons, Federation of Ontario Naturalists, Toronto ON
I enquired at the Department of Agriculture, Ottawa about the growing of nut trees and they
directed me to your attention. I'm interested in growing black walnut and Manchurian walnut.
Please send me additional information.
Campbell Orange, Cantley PQ
John Bradshaw briefly described your organization during his Radio Program on CFRB. Please
send me information about what nut trees would perform effectively in my area.
B. F. Savage, Coledon ON
Please give me details about what nut trees will grow on my property
which is 25 miles north of Orillia. I enjoyed my first newsletter and also the spring auction at the
Civic Garden Centre, Don Mills, Ontario.
John Batchelor, Weston ON
On behalf of the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority, I wish to express our thanks to
Horace Troup for his donation of grafted hickory trees which were planted at the Niagara Nut
Grove. As you are aware, the Nut Grove project is highly prized by the Authority and we cannot
adequately express our appreciation to the members of SONG whose interest and enthusiasm has
made this project a success.
Donald E. Duff, Secretary-Treasurer, Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority, Fonthill ON
My family visited the Niagara Nut Grove at Virgil, Ontario in June of 1978 and found it most
interesting. We planted some heartnuts at our Toronto location this spring and they have grown 7
feet in height so far this season.
J. L. Coulton, Toronto ON
I am trying to introduce varieties of Persian walnut and Chinese chestnut to this area of British
Columbia. However I'm not getting much encouragement locally: it has never been done (tried)
before, you know!
A. L. Marlow, McBride BC
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