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Black Walnut guild

Posts: 175
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I have several huge black walnuts on my property and I want to guild one in the front yard and create a forest garden off it.    Its about 50-60 ft right now with 2 apples just out from the dripline on the north side and a few black locust maybe 60 ft away on the north side.    i read the guild in gaias garden and that seems to be what most folks reference in the info I have found.  Except of course fo so many people saying the tomatoes don't work.

Anyway I plan on using persimmon, mulberry, serviceberry, jerusalem artichoke, mullein (its their already)

Also maybe goji, goumi, elderberry,

I was wondering if anyone had tried korean bush cherries or nanking cherry  or possibly Jiougulan?

Also open to any other things you have seen work.
Posts: 4437
Location: North Central Michigan
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there was a thread on here about planting under black walnuts in the past..I'll try to do a search for it..the page I had saved is no longer available.
Brenda Groth
Posts: 4437
Location: North Central Michigan
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Plants Observed Growing Under or Near Black Walnut*
Japanese Maples, Acer palmatum and its cultivars
Southern Catalpa, Catalpa bignonioides
Eastern Redbud, Cercis canadensis
Canadian Hemlock, Tsuga canadensis
Vines and Shrubs
Clematis 'Red Cardinal'
February Daphne, Daphne mezereum
Euonymus species
Weeping Forsythia, Forsythia suspensa
Rose of Sharon, Hibiscus syriacus
Tartarian Honeysuckle, Lonicera tatarica, and most other Lonicera species
Virginia Creeper, Parthenocissus quinquefolia
** Pinxterbloom, Rhododendron periclymenoides
**'Gibraltar' and 'Balzac', Rhododendron Exbury hybrids
Multiflora Rose, Rosa multiflora
Black Raspberry, Rubus occidentalis
Arborvitaes, Thuja species
** Koreanspice Viburnum, Viburnum carlesii, and most other Viburnum species
Pot-marigold, Calendula officinalis 'Nonstop'
Begonia, fibrous cultivars
Morning Glory, Ipomoea 'Heavenly Blue'
Pansy Viola
Zinnia species
Squashes, Melons, Beans, Carrots, Corn
Fruit Trees
Peach, Nectarine, Cherry, Plum
Prunus species Pear-Pyrus species
Herbaceous Perennials
Bugleweed, Ajuga reptans
Hollyhock, Alcea rosea
American Wood Anemone, Anemone quinquefolia
Jack-in-the-Pulpit, Arisaema triphyllum
European Wild Ginger, Asarum europaeum
Astilbe species
Bellflower, Campanula latifolia
**Chrysanthemum species (some)
Glory-of-the-Snow, Chionodoxa luciliae
Spring Beauty, Claytonia virginica
Crocus species
Dutchman's Breeches, Dicentra cucullaria
Leopard's-Bane, Doronicum species
Crested Wood Fern, Dryopteris cristata
Spanish Bluebell, Endymion hispanicus
Winter Aconite, Eranthis hyemalis
Snowdrop, Galanthus nivalis
Sweet Woodruff, Galium odoratum
Herb Robert, Geranium robertianum
Cranesbill, Geranium sanguineum
Grasses (most) Gramineae family
Jerusalem Artichoke, Helianthus tuberosus
Common Daylily, Hemerocallis 'Pluie de Feu'
Coral Bells, Heuchera x brizoides
Orange Hawkweed, Hieracium aurantiacum
Plantain-lily, Hosta fortunei 'Glauca'
Hosta lancifolia
Hosta marginata
Hosta undulata 'Variegata'
Common Hyacinth, Hyacinthus Orientalis 'City of Haarlem'
Virginia Waterleaf, Hydrophyllum virginianum
Siberian Iris, Iris sibirica
Balm, Monarda didyma
Wild Bergamot, M. fistulosa
Grape Hyacinth, Muscari botryoides
Sweet Cicely, Myrrhis odorata 'Yellow Cheerfulness,' 'Geranium,' 'Tete a Tete,' 'Sundial,' and 'February Gold'
Sundrops, Oenothera fruticosa
Senstitive Fern, Onoclea sensibilis
Cinnamon Fern, Osmunda cinnamomea
Peony, **Paeonia species (some)
Summer Phlox, Phlox paniculata
Mayapple, Podophyllum peltatum
Jacob's-Ladder, Polemonium reptans
Great Solomon's-Seal, Polygonatum commutatum
Polyanthus Primrose, Primula x polyantha
Lungwort, Pulmonaria species
Bloodroot, Sanguinaria canadensis
Siberian Squill, Scilla sibirica
Goldmoss Stonecrop, Sedum acre
Showy Sedum, Sedum spectabile
Lamb's-Ear, Stachys byzantina
Spiderwort, Tradescantia virginiana
Nodding Trillium, Trillium cernuum
White Wake-Robin, Trillium grandiflorum
Tulipa Darwin 'White Valcano' and 'Cum Laude,' Parrot 'Blue Parrot,' Greigii 'Toronto'
Big Merrybells, Uvularia grandiflora
Canada Violet, Viola canadensis
Horned Violet, Viola cornuta
Woolly Blue Violet, Viola sororia
*These are based upon observations and not from clinical tests.
**Cultivars of some species may do poorly.

Plants That Do Not Grow Within 50 Feet of Drip Line of Black Walnut
Herbaceous Perennials
Colorado Columbine, Aquilegia caerulea
Wild Columbine, Aquilegia canadensis
Asparagus, Asparagus offinalis
*Chrysanthemum Chrysanthumum species (some)
Baptisia australis
Hydrangea species
Lilies, Lilium species (particularly the Asian hybrids)
Alfalfa, Medicago sativa
Buttercup, Narcissus 'John Evelyn,' 'Unsurpassable' 'King Alfred' and 'Ice Follies'
Peonies, *Paeonia species (some)
Rhubarb, Rheum rhabarbarum
Silver Maple, Acer saccharinum
European Alder, Alnus glutinosa
White Birches, Betula species
Northern Hackberry, Celtis occidentalis
Apples and Crabapples, Malus species
Norway Spruce, Picea abies
Mugo Pine, Pinus mugo
Red Pine, Pinus resinosa
Eastern White Pine, Pinus strobus
Basswood, Tilia heterophylla
Red Chokeberry, Aronia arbutifolia
Hydrangea species
Mountain Laurels, Kalmia species
Privet, Ligustrum species
Amur Honeysuckle, Lonicera maackii
Brush Cinquefoil, Potentilla species
Rhododendrons and Azaleas, **Rhododendron species (most)
Blackberry, Rubus allegheniensis
Lilacs, Syringa species and cultivars
Yew, Taxus species
Blueberry, Vaccinium corymbosum
*Viburnum plicatum tomentosum 'Mariesii'
Annuals and Vegetables Transplants
Cabbage, Brassica oleracea capitata
Peppers, Capsicum species (some)
Tomatoes, Lycopersicon esculentum
Flowering Tobacco, Nicotiana alata
Petunia species and cultivars
Eggplant, Solanum melongena
Potato, Solanum tuberosum
double-flowered cole vegetables
*Cultivars of some species may survive but will do poorly.

The authors express their appreciation to Drs. M. Scott Biggs, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, and Harry Hoitink, Department of Plant Pathology, for their review and additional comments.


All educational programs conducted by Ohio State University Extension are available to clientele on a nondiscriminatory basis without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, gender, age, disability or Vietnam-era veteran status.

Keith L. Smith, Associate Vice President for Ag. Adm. and Director, OSU Extension.

TDD No. 800-589-8292 (Ohio only) or 614-292-1868


also check other walnut toxitiy threads on www.permies.com  

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Bloom where you are planted.


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Tim Canton
Posts: 175
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Thanks Brenda,

I have seen a few similar lists from other universities as well.  I always find crossover in them....for instance one I just saw listed chokeberry as ok.....  I guess its a gray scenario.....

SO I am wondering if cherries do ok with it  would the bush cherries and nankins probably be ok as well?

thanks for that list
Posts: 7926
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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Here is an article and listing from NCSU:


Posts: 88
Location: South Central Mississippi
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My dear ol pappy didn't know you wudn't sposed to plant maters near a black walnut.

Ignernce is bliss I reckon.  And since I already knew that bliss is fried green t'maters then I'm cipher'n that ignernce must mean that t'maters'll grow under a black walnut tree as long as you don't know that they aint sposed to grow there. 

Damn Greeks and red necks!

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When creating a guild around a walnut tree or planting trees nearby the walnut tree, you need to keep in mind that black walnuts are toxic to certain plants and trees.  Black walnuts contain a chemical called juglone and is most concentrated in the hulls of the nuts and the roots.  It is even advisable not put the leaves and twigns on raised beds for mulch.  The toxic effects of the tree can extend 50 to 80 feet from the tree.  Plants that are sensitive to black walnut develope yellow leaves and are stunted in growth.  Apple trees are sensitive to juglone.

Posts: 165
Location: E Washington steppe
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I periodically peruse the Yank version of the PRI site, www.permaculture.org and they've recently followed through on a promise to post the "best of the Drylands Permaculture magazine".  Yay.

Anyhow, I noticed this article from that magazine about black walnut guilds and thought you might be interested:


I agree. Here's the link: https://richsoil.com/wood-heat.jsp
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