Butternut Tree Seeds
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(Juglans cinerea) Deciduous. Zones 3-7.
The Butternut tree is really something special! Not only is it a striking shade tree, it's also a wonderful food source.
Similar in appearance to Black Walnut, Butternut is sometimes called White Walnut because of the light colour of the bark and wood. The wood is softer, and used to make paneling, cabinets, and furniture. It is the only walnut tree native to Canada.
Butternut is a fast growing tree and can reach up to 60 feet during its 80 year lifespan. It thrives in full sun and organically rich, deep, well-drained soil and doesn’t like competition.
In Spring, female flowers give way to drooping clusters of edible oval nuts encased in hairy, sticky husks. The nuts mature in Fall, and while they can be small and difficult to crack, the treasure inside is incredible! Butternut tree nuts are tender, sweet, oily, with a rich, buttery flavour.
The nuts are rich in proteins and omega-3 fatty acids, loaded with vitamins and minerals, and have antioxidant properties. They look like a walnut, but are sweeter and creamier! Crushed Butternuts are wonderful in breads and muffins, sprinkled over soup and salads, or used to add richness to sauces.
Indigenous peoples traditionally used Butternut nuts for food and boiled the tree sap for syrup. The crushed nuts were mashed to make a nutritious infant food and the rich nut oil was used in cooking, hairdressing, leather making and polishing tools. The husks can be used to dye fabric.
Cold Hardiness: Zones 3 - 7
Size: Medium Tree
Growth Rate: Medium
Nitrogen Fixer: No
Native Plant: Yes
Germination: 60 - 80%
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Soil Preference: Moist, well draining.
Stratification: 120 days cold moist stratification.