Planting English Walnut Trees


English walnut trees make wonderful additions to the landscape if you have the room. They are visually impressive and can reach a height of over 60 feet with a 60 foot width, and a trunk that can measure 5 feet in diameter. These trees are prized for their wood as well as their nuts and can be a major food source for wildlife. Choosing a proper site for this valuable tree in important.

Step 1

Choose a suitable site. Mature trees can be 60 feet in diameter and need a location that receives sun all day. English Walnut trees will tolerate a wide range of soil types but deep, well-drained soil is a must to prevent crown rot. They also need protection from high winds. Choose a site away from patios and decks as these trees are messy and staining.

Step 2

Dig a hole twice as wide as the root ball and as deep as the container or balled and burlaped tree. Most English walnut trees are grafted onto black walnut rootstock so the planting depth is important. Mix organic material (peat moss, leaf mold, manure, or compost) into the soil that has been removed. The ratio should be 1 part organic matter to two parts soil

Step 3

Remove the plant from its container. If the roots are a dense mass, score the root ball deeply in three places with the pruning saw. Prune any visible damaged roots. If the plant is balled and wrapped in burlap, place the tree in the hole before removing the wrapping. Remove as much of the wrapping as you can and remove all the strings. What is left of the burlap will disintegrate over time.

Step 4

Fill in around roots with the soil mixture. When you have filled in the hole half way, fill the planting hole with water. As it drains it will settle the planting mix around the roots. Continue filling in the hole and water again.

Step 5

Water every day for the first two weeks.

Step 6

Check the moisture level of the soil for the next few weeks and water as needed. The soil should be moist but not wet. Once your English walnut tree is established it will be drought tolerant.

Tips and Warnings

  • Wear gloves when harvesting the nuts. They will stain your hands.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Organic matter
  • Pruning saw
  • Pruning shears
  • Garden hose


  • University of Wisconsin Urban Horticulture Website: Juglone Tolerant Plants
  • You Love Them but You Hate Them ... Those Big English Walnut Trees
Keywords: how to plant an English walnut tree, caring for an English walnut tree, pros and cons of English walnut trees

About this Author

Joan Puma is a graduate of Hofstra University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in fine arts, and has worked in the film industry for many years as a script supervisor. Puma's interest in gardening lead her to write The Complete Urban Gardener, which was published by Harper & Row. Other interests include, art history, medieval history, and equitation.