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What do you use Honey Locust for?

 
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What do you use honey locust for. Do you eat the beans. Chicken feed?
 
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My life's experience with honey locust is getting plenty of practice patching tractor tires.
 
master pollinator
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I have the thornless variety.  I use them as shade trees because they make a really nice dappled shade, and as nitrogen fixers to be coppiced.  I don't know how well that works though, my future coppice trees are far to small to be coppiced yet.
 
pollinator
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Location: Sunizona Az., USA @ 4,500' Zone 8a
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greening the desert
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Trace Oswald wrote:I have the thornless variety.  I use them as shade trees because they make a really nice dappled shade, and as nitrogen fixers to be coppiced.  I don't know how well that works though, my future coppice trees are far to small to be coppiced yet.


^^^This.

They are super tough, handle the high desert, and create canopy with ease.

Pretty shape too IMO.
 
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We worked for two summers to eradicate honey locust!  (This was before I knew anything about permaculture.)  The thorns alone were terrifying, and they multiplied with startling ferocity.  I think they might be all gone, although I thought I saw one small one last year.  If it surfaces I wonder what I'll do with it.
 
gardener
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I have often wondered if the wood is as rot resistant as black locust, or even close to it. Anyone know?  I have plenty round here and would love to make some home grown fenceposts.

Also, true story, when I was trying to source some black locust fenceposts a few years ago, I called a guy and asked if the Locust posts he was selling were black locust. He got kinda mean, saying they are just locust, which of course made me think he knew exactly what they were (this was a wood mill, mind you) and was scamming.
 
Jordan Holland
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Artie Scott wrote:I have often wondered if the wood is as rot resistant as black locust, or even close to it. Anyone know?  I have plenty round here and would love to make some home grown fenceposts.

Also, true story, when I was trying to source some black locust fenceposts a few years ago, I called a guy and asked if the Locust posts he was selling were black locust. He got kinda mean, saying they are just locust, which of course made me think he knew exactly what they were (this was a wood mill, mind you) and was scamming.



In Kentucky they are not rot-resistant at all. May be better other places.
 
Jordan Holland
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Anne Pratt wrote:We worked for two summers to eradicate honey locust!  (This was before I knew anything about permaculture.)  The thorns alone were terrifying, and they multiplied with startling ferocity.  I think they might be all gone, although I thought I saw one small one last year.  If it surfaces I wonder what I'll do with it.



We did this as well about 25 years ago. They are still sprouting up from seeds in the ground.
 
master pollinator
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Wow.  ....silly me trying to grow them.

...but wait, did you know you can eat the bean??? yep, you can!  

de-pod the beans, cover them with water in a pot and bring it to a boil.

pour water containing tannin off, add water and bring to a boil again.

pour the water off, drain the beans (which will be very hard), and dry them.


Now you have a very mild bean which you can add honey to for a cereal, or you can add to a chile dish to replace the annual beans!

Instead of planting annual beans every single year, weeding them every single year, you can simply pick your beans off a tree with out all that hard work    -and you don't have to try and kill all those honey locust trees!
 
Jordan Holland
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Speak of the devil...I went to cut up a downed cherry tree yesterday and noticed this. The canteen marks where I just drove with the Jeep. I didn't even notice it. Even this small, the thorns have already hardened. This tree is hundreds of yards from any place I remember there ever being a thorn tree. I checked a honey locust along the fence row to see if there were any seeds from last year. There was a pile of pods around the tree. They appeared to date back to at least a few years ago. There appears to be some boring insect that eats the seeds. I wondered, if these are so delicious and nutritious, why didn't the wildlife eat them? Acorns, hickory nuts, pecans, mayapples, etc. they will scour the ground within days. I'll have to watch this fall.
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Location: London, Ontario, Canada
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The flowers are edible, and DELICIOUSLY sweet!

 
Orin Raichart
master pollinator
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Jordan Holland wrote:Speak of the devil.... I wondered, if these are so delicious and nutritious, why didn't the wildlife eat them?  I'll have to watch this fall.



How about trying what I did and form your own opinion from the actual taste instead???   Make sure you boil them twice.  And if they were so bad, why do the insects eat them as quick as they do?   ...maybe spoil the the bean so the insect and have them all?

...and hopefully you REALLY don't like them so you can send them all to me!!!
 
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