Fall 1993 no. 43
In this Issue...
The US National Arboretum research staff has a "new naturalism" approach to planting that I
thought might be worth sharing with our members and I would hope might generate some
comments from them.
The current research position is that trees and other woody plants take hold more successfully
and grow stronger and more resistant if subject to natural stress. Staking may not be helpful, they
say, and should only be done for the first year after transplanting. A wind break is a better
protection from weather than a stake.
Heavily amended soil is not now recommended for big plants. Adding masses of organic material
to planting holes for large woody plants can have no lasting benefit. They claim that the sooner a
plant begins to tie into the naturally occurring soil, the better.
Their research suggests fertilization and frequent watering of woody plants may stimulate rapid
growth but result in weaker structures more vulnerable to wind storms, frost, droughts, extremes
of temperature, pests and diseases. Also recommended is the use of fertilizers high in organic
contents, these are least likely to acidify the soil to killing intensities and should be applied
lightly and frequently for the most benefit.
Direct comments to: Margaret Holmes, Box 2025, Newcastle, Ontario, LOA 1HO.
The Big Shows from 1993
The fabulous SONG spring auction of 1993 was held on April 17, 1993 at the Civic Garden
Centre, Don Mills, Ontario. It was the usual roaring success resulting in several hundred nut trees
finding happy, new homes.
The annual summer meeting of SONG was held on July 24, 1993 at Smithfield, Ontario.
The tour of the station nut grove was delightful. The business meeting produced the following
President ... Margaret Holmes
Vice-President ... Joan Helmer
Treasurer ... Marion Grimo
Secretary ... Bob Hambleton
Editor ... Doug Campbell
Honorary Director ... Jim Harvey
Treasury Scrutineer ... Joyce Branston
Nominating Committee ... Chairman Ken Weston, Members Murial Braham, John Gordon
Historical Reporter ... Joyce McEwan
A motion was moved/seconded/passed for the Treasurer to supply up to $50.00 per day for
expenses for SONG members who participate in displays at "remote" locations where
travel/lodging/meals are involved.
A discussion took place about a SONG display for the April 1, 2, 3, 1994 Flower Show at the
International Centre in Toronto.
The Fall meeting of SONG took place at the Orono Forestry Nursery of the Ministry of Natural
Resources of Ontario, October 16, 1993. There was a good movie and a tour of the stands of
young nursery stock ... thousands, yea millions of young trees! From this meeting, there were
several suggestions about activities/topics for future SONG meetings: Pruning of nut
trees/grafting/propagation methods/new varieties/marketing opportunities/visit the seed
extraction facilities at Angus, Ontario/develop mailing lists of landowners who may be potential
nut growers ... and send information on speculation/investigate filbert nut qualities/hold a
meeting in Hamilton/offer seed/trees for sale at each meeting.
Bits And Pieces
Over a period of time, a great quantity of information accumulates at editorial headquarters. Most
often, each individual unit is not that significant in itself but when large numbers of these are
looked at as a group, it's perhaps more than one expected:
- Bob Cobbledick, an experienced marketer of Agricultural products gave a talk on
November 17, 1992 about how to start a cottage industry nut sales business
Define your goals ... how many nuts sold per year
Identify your customers ... wholesale/retail
Effective advertising ... papers, brochures, word of mouth
Quality ... consistently high ... repeat business
Value for money
- The New York State Chapter of the American Chestnut Foundation Inc., c/o Buffalo
Museum of Science, 1020 Humboldt Parkway, Buffalo, New York USA 14211 is an excellent
source of information on the American chestnut and the related struggles against the chestnut
blight. Annual membership is $15.00 in US funds. In the last few years, the annual meetings have
been held in the Buffalo/Niagara Falls, NY area.
- There is a research group in the United States which is charged with the responsibility to
overview happenings in the hickory species as well as pecans, etc. The chief in charge is Dr.
Tommy Thompson, Pecan Genetics and Breeding Research, Rte 2, Box 133, Hwy 50,
Somerville, Texas, USA 77879. Currently, they recognize 12 different species of hickory and the
making of hybrid hickory/pecans is part of the research program.
- Back in September 15-18, 1993 the Ministry of Natural Resources of Ontario put on a
biennial offering of the forest festival ...SILVILOG 93. The location was the Copeland Forest
north of Barrie, Ontario. There were some excellent displays in forest management/technology:
firewood production systems which take wood from the standing in the forest condition right to
cord wood in the truck ... without being touched by human hands; numerous chain saw demos ...
keep them sharp ... don't cut on the upper side of the point... keep the safety bars in place and
working!; wood sculpturing displays; all-terrain vehicles; Hindle's Clarksburg Hardware, Marsh
Street, Box 8, Clarksburg, Ontario NOH 1JO - 519-599-2031, a treasure trove of miscellaneous
forestry tools; wood chipping machines and make your own mulch; tree spraying equipment;
logging with horses demos; monstrous tree spades by Vermeer; wood stoves; tree tubes (scores
of different models!). It was a great experience leading up to the time that we have some tree
thinning to do in our nut orchards. Remember... the chain saw is one of the prime nut grove
management tools!! On my property, I harvest a full cord and more of firewood every year. It
cuts my winter heating bill in half! No GST either! All of this from a mere 2 acre lot!
- Part of the reason why California produce shows up all around the globe is that they have
such a large planted acreage. Examples ... compared to Ontario, California has 4 times the
strawberries, 25 times the plums, 10 times the sweet cherries, 7 times the peaches and 40 times
the grapes. It underlies the fact that to reap one must sow!!
- The Eastern Chapter of SONG, ECSONG, has been making excellent progress in the last few
years. They've identified numerous hardy types of nut trees growing in the Ottawa region. Some
of these trees are decades old. ECSONG puts out regular newsletters which are goldmines of
information on the hardier species [part of SONG News as of 2009].
- We picked up 40 bushels of Persian walnuts from our orchards in 1991. Some of our
favourites are: Somers, Cobles |l, Hansen, Alpine, Jumbo, Lake. We like Bedco I and Bednur in
particular because they are late vegetating, 7-14 days after Hansen. George Dickum, R.D.#2, Box
28A, New Paris, Pennsylvania, USA 15554.
- Probably there are one or more news releases per month from food processors which
announce that some nut content has got into a product for which there is no mention on the label.
This is easy to happen because food processors make many kinds of product from one set of
machinery. People who have nut allergies should always keep this fact of life in mind!
- Ontario nut growers who have had difficulties in getting some of the more obscure
agricultural trace elements might consult the following: Wilbur-Ellis Company of Canada Ltd.,
555 Southgate Drive, Unit 101, Guelph, Ontario N1H 6J3.
- I planted 4 pecan trees from the pecan seed distribution back in 1984. Last fall (1992) we had
16°F temperatures on October 1 and the leaves were fully green when frozen. In December,
the temperature went to -38°F. This spring (1993) all of the pecans leafed out at the regular
time ... no damage on 2 trees, the other 2 lost some terminal buds. It appears that the northern
pecan can endure some severe winter weather. Gary Stegmiller, 621 S. 14th St., Bismarck, North
- A scarcity of France's black truffles has prompted unscrupulous canners to mix in cheap
white truffles (dyed black with walnut stain), which is as "exciting as turnip" according to
Business Week magazine. A year-long probe by consumer fraud inspectors is bringing l'affaire
des truffes to court.
- 71% of all "chemical control materials" used in Ontario in 1992 were herbicides (by weight).
- The ginseng industry has gone from $3 million in 1993 to an expected $100 million in 1994!
- Communities of indigenous microfungi and bacteria in cropping systems are vast and
relatively unexploited reservoirs of antagonistic organisms which can suppress plant pathogens in
developing crops, in crop residues and in the crop environment. (Clear?)
- An example of the above is the use of the fungus Gliocladium roseum as a very efficient
control of Botrytus cinerea (brown rot) in strawberries. Now you don't have to rush out to get a
permit to apply G.R. inoculum. If you organize your local bees effectively, they will do the job
for you! Isn't it wonderful that bees can carry good news as well as bad news (fireblight)? Should
we hold our breath until the research establishment discovers an antagonistic pathogen for
Xanthamona campestris in walnut?
- "I am trying to identify/develop Persian walnuts which are lateral bearers as well as
self-pollinating. Hansen is a "reasonably good" example of this. Otherwise 90% of Persians are
shade trees 40 feet wide and bearing a few nuts 20 feet out from the trunk!" Joseph Charge, 5123
Field Road, Clio, Michigan, USA, 48420.
- "Mr. Campbell, we are looking for shelled almonds and walnuts (in shell) to export to India."
Lotus Pacific 23519 Deer Spring Road, Diamond Bar, California, USA, 91765.
Ordinarily the above message would not attract all that much attention. However... look at the
- Every once in a while I receive in the mail what some might call ... a real zinger! This month
it is a free pass to the anniversary celebration of the Thoiry Chateau and Park, Thoiry, France,
78770. What are the attractions? Bed and Breakfast Louis XIV style, run of the Chateau lounges
and performing arts (music) rooms; museum of gastronomy (eating!), acres and acres (hectares)
of trees/bushes/flowers including a North American tree display (here's your chance nut
growers); a zoological garden with over 800 species of animals; a Romanesque feast; a winter
solstice celebration and high tea; Sunrise Music and Summer Solstice Celebration; Festival of
Azaleas and Rhododendrons; Thoiry Gardens Exposition; Autumn Garden Leaf display; lectures
by Viscount Paul de la Panouse, Elena Shishko etc. The motto of this place is ... "La Nature est le
plus beau spectacle cree pour homme!... which translates (roughly) into the other official
language ... "Nature is the greatest show on Earth!" Then, of course, if you run out of things to do
at Chateau Thoiry, you can always jog down the street a few blocks to Versailles and take in a
few odds and ends there to round out your day! So ... you can see what a bonanza it is to be
Editor of SONG! Free pass, eh?
- Every once in a while you find some group which is specialized in knowing and assembling
all of the significant tree books written in the English language. Dave Curtis and the Forest Shop
Ltd. are excellent examples. They issue a catalog upon request. Write to: The Forest Shop Ltd.,
Box 550, 25 Main St., Brighton, Ontario KOK 1HO.
Provided by SONG. Feel free to copy with a credit.