I saw a great post from about 5 years ago about some of the different black walnut varieties available and some other general info (Black Walnut named varieties). I am looking at doing a 4 acre planting of black walnut trees on one property, and may continue into doing a much larger ~150 property as well once I have learned a little more and have a little more info on feasibility of the whole project. I am trying to find out more about a number of subjects, and the answers I get are all over the place online so I was hoping someone here had a little more experience and could at least point me in the right direction.
I am in the East Texas area, and know that generally black walnuts grow well in deep, loose, and moist soils that are unobstructed by rocks or dense clay, and that production greatly depends on both cultivar and conditions, I am currently looking at Neel #1 and know they need a pollinator like sparrow to go along with them (open to anything that makes sense commercially) and have the following questions:
- Are there any studies on impact of production with fertilizer, especially liquid fertilizer applied as an injection through mirco watering systems (or studies on fertilizing in general and their impact on yield).
2a) Does anyone have any good references on nut yield by age of the tree. Also does anyone know if that the associated number would be years after planting on site, or age including time at the nursery before planting.
2b) When looking at yield numbers does the weight of nuts include the hulls and the shell, the shell only, or just the nut meat?
Does anyone have any numbers about sales value of the nuts through different avenues? I know that Hammond is the largest buyer of black walnuts, and read a recent article that said that they cap the price they pay for wild black walnuts at $0.16 per pound, but did not know if that included the hull and/or shell in the weight, and if they were willing to pay more for commercial varieties. Additionally if anyone had any general numbers around both selling to retailers/ice cream manufacturers and direct to consumer would be greatly appreciated.
I have read some conflicting reports around the addition of other cash crops being grown along side the black walnut. Of course many cash crops are not able to tolerate the toxins the roots release, but have read through some sources it is a good idea to grow other crops while other reports say that the loss in nut production is not worth it for growing other cash crops.
Is this a nutrient issue that could be solved through the use of a complete fertilizer, or managed by doing tests on the leaves of the walnut trees to monitor appropriate fertilizers needed?
Does anyone know of any ways that one could reduce the alternate bearing issues with black walnuts? As above is this an issue where the tree simply is not getting enough nutrients to pump out good yields year after year?
One of the interesting articles that I read about was tapping the black walnut trees for syrup as they grow. Does anyone know if doing so would stunt their growth, or generally be worth while. I am sure much of this info would be the same as anyone growing maple/pecan trees.
Does anyone have any good sources of black walnut trees specifically Neel #1 or any other variety they might suggest for growing in East Texas
Anything else that I might need to know or would generally be helpful?