How to Identify an English Walnut Tree


English walnut trees are large, deciduous trees that can grow up to 60 feet tall at maturity. The foliage is rich, green and dense, making the English walnut tree excellent as both a shade tree and a nut producer. You can identify English walnut trees by several of its characteristics. Reference a tree guidebook that has pictures, especially if you can study the nuts produced by the tree to help in identifying it. Borrow or purchase a field guide for your region at your local agricultural extension office.

Step 1

Study the overall shape to the tree. English walnut trees' canopies have a spreading, rounded shape.

Step 2

Look at the shape of the leaves to identify an English walnut tree. The leaves are oval and grow together in groups of five to nine alternating leaflets on a single stem.

Step 3

Identify the English walnut tree by its leaves' size and margins. The leaves have smooth edges and are 5 to 9 inches long.

Step 4

Spot English walnut trees by studying the fruits. The walnuts grow in green husks, which split open and release the nut when they ripen. Inside the husk, the walnut's shell is lumpy with a vertical seam along the length of the slightly ovular, light brown exterior.

Tips and Warnings

  • Don't confuse the English walnut tree with the black walnut. The black walnut tree's leaves have teeth on the edges instead of smooth leaf edges like the English walnut. Also, the black walnut has narrower and more leaflets, with 15 to 23 leaflets arranged alternately on the single stem.

Things You'll Need

  • Tree field guidebook


  • Purdue University: Walnut (English) -- Tree

Who Can Help

  • What Tree Is It?
Keywords: identify English walnut tree, find English walnuts, English walnut trees

About this Author

Sarah Terry brings 10 years of experience writing novels, business-to-business newsletters, and a plethora of how-to articles. Terry has written articles and publications for a wide range of markets and subject matters, including Medicine & Health, Eli Financial, Dartnell Publications and Eli Journals.