Arizona black walnut trees (Juglans major) are found in not only Arizona, but also parts of Texas, New Mexico and Mexico. While often harvested for its valuable timber, this tree is also harvested for its nuts, which are edible and used in baked goods or eaten raw. The Arizona black walnut is similar to other black walnut trees and is harvested in a similar manner. Once harvested, the husks should be removed before being dried and stored for long-term use.
Wear gloves, old shoes (or rubber shoes) and old clothes. Black walnuts will stain your clothes, shoes and hands. You can also use tongs to harvest black walnuts.
Wait three months from the time the walnuts appear until you pick them. This usually occurs sometime from July to September. The nuts will be about 1 to 1 ½ inches in diameter when ripe.
Pick the ripe black walnuts and place them in a bucket. You can even pick them right off the ground, which is the easiest way to harvest those nuts you cannot reach. Alternatively, you could use a ladder, but use common sense and proper safety measures.
Harvest your nuts weekly for the next four to six weeks. The nuts during this time will continually drop and grow larger in size (1 to 1 ½ inches).