How to Plant a Black Walnut Tree From Seed


Black walnut trees are an excellent source of timber and nuts. In fact, many would argue that the black walnut tree is one of the most valuable trees. So long as the weather is right, black walnut trees can be planted from seeds to produce a seedling after the winter frost.

Step 1

Gather the walnuts as they fall from a black walnut tree. Peel off the husks to expose the nut. Fresh walnuts can be gathered from wild black walnut trees or from orchards, with the farmer's permission.

Step 2

Measure 60 feet away from any sensitive plants, as black walnuts secrete a natural herbicide called juglone.

Step 3

Plant six nuts in a row, spaced 6 inches apart. Use a hand shovel to dig a hole 4 inches into the soil. Place the nut diagonally into the hole and cover it with soil.

Step 4

Cover the nut's topsoil with a piece of hardware cloth and secure the hardware cloth in place with wire bent into "V" shapes and pressed into the ground. This step will protect the nuts from squirrels.

Step 5

Cover the cloth with mulch to lessen the effects of the freezing temperatures on the nuts. Make note of the area so that you can remove the hardware cloth at the end of winter.

Step 6

Continue observing the seedling's growth. After three months, determine the healthiest tree and pull out the rest.

Step 7

Water the seedling only during a time of drought, when the soil dries out below 3 inches.

Things You'll Need

  • Black walnut tree seeds
  • Tape measure
  • Hand shovel
  • Hardware cloth
  • Wire
  • Mulch


  • University of Minnesota Extension: Growing Black Walnut
Keywords: black walnut propagation, black walnut tree, plant black walnut

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Steven White is a privately contracted software engineer, web developer, and tech support representative. He has 3 years of experience providing technical support for AT&T broadband customers. He is currently a Master's of Software Engineering student and enjoys sharing his knowledge and expertise with others.