Saturday, October 15, 2011

Black Walnut Harvest

This afternoon, we were cleaning up some trees that fell down in the horse pasture awhile back. As I was walking down by the creek I stumbled upon some black walnuts! So, I grabbed a bucket and my little brother and we set to work. We ended up collecting a couple five gallon buckets worth of nuts.

To get the hulls off the shells, I poured them into the gravel driveway. Leaving them in the there for a bit allows our vehicles to get the hulls off of the nuts. There are other methods of doing this, but I this seems to be the least time consuming way.

Black Walnuts

My brother, Josiah
 After the hulls are removed and picked up out of the driveway, you can determine if you have any "floaters" by putting them in a container full of water. The floaters are nuts that are normally not fully developed inside and do not have very much nutmeat. Before you throw them out check them and make sure though, sometimes they simply have a thin shell.

Now they will need to be stored where they can cure properly. Many people keep them in old feed sacks so they can get plenty of air circulation. They need to cure for about eight weeks or so. After curing they are ready to crack and eat! As you can see it will be a couple months before we will be able to actually use them. Compared to the retail price of black walnuts though, you can't beat harvesting your own!

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