English Walnut


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English Walnut

 

(Juglans regia), a tree of the family Juglandaceae. It attains a height of 20 to 30 m and has a trunk diameter of up to 1.5 m. The crown is thick and broadly rounded. The leaves are large (20–40 cm long), imparipin-nately compound, deciduous, and fragrant (from the volatile oil they contain). The flowers are monoecious; the male flowers grow in long catkins (when in blossom) and the female flowers singly or in clusters of two or three and more at the ends of short annual shoots. The fruit is a round or somewhat elongated drupe (nut). The outer pericarp is fleshy and green, while the inner one (shell) is woody with fleshy seeds (the so-called kernel). The English walnut grows well in moist, sunny places. It grows best in moderately damp carbonate loams with a low and constant groundwater level. The root system is strong and penetrates deep into the soil. The tree blooms in April and May, and the fruit ripens in September and October. Grafted trees begin to bear fruit in the eighth to tenth year and continue to bear fruit for up to 150–200 years. The nut yield from one tree (at the age of 30–50 years) is from 65 to 100 kg (sometimes up to 250 kg).

The English walnut grows naturally in Asia Minor, the Balkan Peninsula, Iran, and China, and it is cultivated in the United States, southwestern Europe, and the USSR. In Transcaucasia it is rarely found in the wild state, but it is widely cultivated and grows wild in many places. In the southern part of European USSR it is grown in gardens. Many varieties of English walnut are found among wild and formerly cultivated thickets and in cultivated plantings. Local varieties include the Bulgarian. Hassar, Ideal, Kazakhstan, Motherland. Thin-shelled, and Uzbek Earlymaturing.

The kernel of the English walnut contains 45 to 77 percent fat. 8 to 21 percent protein, vitamin B, and provitamin A. Immature nuts are rich in vitamin C and they are used for making preserves. The ripe kernels are used as food in their fresh form, as well as for culinary and confectionery purposes. The nuts are used to obtain oil (used in food and for making varnishes, high-quality soap, typographic inks, and india ink), and the wood is prized in carpentry, lathe work. and construction. Of particular value are the excrescences on the trunks, the so-called burrs, from which the finest veneers are made. The leaves, bark, and green husks yield tannins and a brown dye. The leaves and husk are used in medicine and perfume. The tree is nectar-bearing. It is used as the main and accompanying forest variety in field-protection strips, for strengthening the banks of ravines and gorges, and in ornamental horticulture.

The English walnut reproduces by means of seeds, which are stratified before sowing for a period of 1½ to two months (thin-shelled) or three to 1½ months (thick-shelled). In the majority of cases the seedlings do not preserve the qualities of the maternal variety, and for this reason they are grafted, more often budded, and sometimes propagated by means of cuttings.

REFERENCES

Krotkevich, P. G. Kul’tura orekhoplodnykh. Kiev. 1954.
Ozol. A. M., and E. I. Khor’kov. Grelskii orekh, ego inlroduktsiia i akklimalizatsiia.Riga. 1958.
Tuichiev. M. T. Grelskii orekh ν Srednei Azii. Tashkent. 1959.

V. A. KOLESNIKOV

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