Index of Species Information

SPECIES:  Juglans cinerea


SPECIES: Juglans cinerea
AUTHORSHIP AND CITATION : Coladonato, Milo 1991. Juglans cinerea. In: Fire Effects Information System, [Online]. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory (Producer). Available: [].

ABBREVIATION : JUGCIN SYNONYMS : NO-ENTRY SCS PLANT CODE : JUCI COMMON NAMES : butternut white walnut oilnut TAXONOMY : The currently accepted scientific name for butternut is Juglans cinerea L. [16]. Butternut and black walnut (Juglans nigra) are very similiar, but can be distinguished by certain morphological differences. Butternut has a pad of small dense hairs extending crosswise along the upper margin of the old leaf scars; in black walnut this pad is absent. The underside leaflets of butternut are densely covered with stellate hairs, while in black walnut leaflet hairs are almost inconspicuous [31]. Recognized hybrids are as follows [24]: J. cinerea x J. regia = J. X quadrangulata J. cinerea x J. ailantifolia = J. X bixbi Reports of crosses between butternut and black walnut have not been substantiated [24]. LIFE FORM : Tree FEDERAL LEGAL STATUS : No special status OTHER STATUS : NO-ENTRY


SPECIES: Juglans cinerea
GENERAL DISTRIBUTION : Butternut is distributed from southeastern New Brunswick throughout the New England States except for northern Maine and Cape Cod. Its range extends south to include northern New Jersey, western Maryland, Virginia, and Tennessee. Small isolated pockets occur in North Carolina, northwestern South Carolina, northern Georgia, northern Alabama, northern Mississippi, and Arkansas. Westward it is found in eastern Iowa and southeastern Minnesota. Disjunct populations occur in Wisconsin, Michigan, and northeast into Ontario and Quebec. Throughout most of its range, butternut is not a common tree and its frequency is declining. The ranges of butternut and black walnut overlap, but butternut occurs farther north than and not as far south as black walnut [3,26,30]. Butternut is cultivated in Hawaii [33]. ECOSYSTEMS : FRES10 White - red - jack pine FRES11 Spruce - fir FRES13 Loblolly - shortleaf pine FRES14 Oak - pine FRES15 Oak - hickory FRES17 Elm - ash - cottonwood FRES18 Maple - beech - birch STATES : AL AR CT DE GA HI IA IL IN KY MA MD ME MI MN MO MS NC NH NJ NY OH PA RI SC TN VA VT WI WV NB ON PQ BLM PHYSIOGRAPHIC REGIONS : NO-ENTRY KUCHLER PLANT ASSOCIATIONS : K095 Great Lakes pine forest K096 Northeastern spruce - fir forest K097 Southereastern spruce - fir forest K099 Maple - basswood forest K100 Oak - hickory K101 Elm - ash forest K102 Beech - maple forest K103 Mixed mesophytic forest K104 Appalachian oak forest K106 Northern hardwoods K107 Northern hardwoods - fir forest K108 Northern hardwoods - spruce forest K110 Northeastern oak - pine forest K111 Oak - hickory - pine forest SAF COVER TYPES : 14 Northern pin oak 20 White pine - northern red oak - red maple 21 Eastern white pine 22 White pine - hemlock 23 Eastern hemlock 24 Hemlock - yellow birch 25 Sugar maple - beech - yellow birch 26 Sugar maple - basswood 27 Sugar maple 28 Black cherry - maple 30 Red spruce - yellow birch 31 Red spruce - sugar maple - beech 32 Red spruce 33 Red spruce - balsam fir 34 Red spruce - Fraser fir 42 Bur oak 43 Bear oak 44 Chestnut oak 45 Pitch pine 46 Eastern redcedar 50 Black locust 51 White pine - chestnut oak 52 White oak - black oak - northern red oak 53 White oak 55 Northern red oak 57 Yellow poplar 59 Yellow poplar - white oak - northern red oak 60 Beech - sugar maple 62 Silver maple - American elm 108 Red maple 109 Hawthorn SRM (RANGELAND) COVER TYPES : NO-ENTRY HABITAT TYPES AND PLANT COMMUNITIES : NO-ENTRY


SPECIES: Juglans cinerea
WOOD PRODUCTS VALUE : Butternut is not an important lumber species. The wood is soft and suitable only for a few uses such as interior finishing, furniture, cabinet work, and small household woodenware [14]. IMPORTANCE TO LIVESTOCK AND WILDLIFE : Butternut fruit provides food for squirrels and other rodents [4,30]. PALATABILITY : Butternut leaves are palatable to white-tailed deer [30]. NUTRITIONAL VALUE : NO-ENTRY COVER VALUE : NO-ENTRY VALUE FOR REHABILITATION OF DISTURBED SITES : Butternut has been recommended for planting on surface mined areas in the Northeast [6]. OTHER USES AND VALUES : Several cultivars have been selected for nut size and for ease of cracking and extracting kernels. Nuts are especially popular in New England for making maple-butternut candy [24]. An iodinelike yellow dye can be extracted from the fruit husks and bark, and the root bark provides a laxative [14]. OTHER MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS : Within its optimum range and on good sites, butternut is usually considered a desirable component of forest stands. It has been classified as a "less desirable tree" in southern Appalachian coves [1,13,19]. The most serious disease of butternut is butternut decline or butternut canker. The causal organism of this disease is the fungus Sirococcus clavigignenti-juglandocearum. Symptoms include dying branches and stems. Spores develop on these dying branches and are spread by rainwater to tree stems. Stem cankers develop 1 to 3 years after branches die. Trees top-killed by stem-girdling cankers do not resprout [24]. This disease is reported to have almost eliminated butternut from North and South Carolina [2,18,25].


SPECIES: Juglans cinerea
GENERAL BOTANICAL CHARACTERISTICS : Butternut is a small to medium-sized tree averaging 40 to 60 feet (12-18 m) in height and 12 to 24 inches (30-60 cm) in d.b.h. This tree has a short trunk which is divided into a few ascending limbs with large spreading, sparsely forked branches. The smaller branches tend to bend downwards and then turn up at the ends. The crown is open, broad, irregular in outline and rounded at the top. The root system is composed of a number of wide-spreading laterals that grow to a considerable depth. Usually a taproot develops in deep soils [7,21,24]. Butternut grows fast, especially as a seedling, but usually does not live longer than 75 years [5,21,24]. RAUNKIAER LIFE FORM : Mesophanerophyte Microphanerophyte REGENERATION PROCESSES : Seed production and dispersal: Commercial seed-bearing age begins at 20 years and is optimum from 30 to 60 years. Good crops of seed can be expected every 2 to 3 years. A high percentage of seeds are sound, but high seed losses occur due to consumption by birds, insects, and rodents. Natural pollination failures often occur due to the lack of pollinated trees in immediate vicinity [4,24]. Upon ripening, seeds are dispersed by gravity, squirrels, and other rodents. [9,24]. Vegetative propagation: Stumps of young butternut trees and saplings can sprout [4,32]. SITE CHARACTERISTICS : Butternut is found most frequently in coves, on stream benches and terraces, on slopes, in the tallus of rock ledges, and on other sites with good drainage [20,28]. It is found up to an elevation of 4,900 feet (1,500 m) in the Virginias [27,31]. In addition to those indicated in the SAF cover type slot (Distribution and occurence), common tree associates include black walnut (Juglans nigra), hickory (Carya spp.), and white ash (Fraxinus americana) [1,3,20,21,24,27]. SUCCESSIONAL STATUS : Although young trees can tolerate partial shade, butternut must be in the overstory to thrive and is classified as intolerant to shade and competition [11]. Like other members of the Junglandaceae family, butternut produces a substance called juglone, a naphthoquinone that is selectively toxic to associated vegetation. Greatest concentrations of juglone are in root tissue and fruit husks, with lesser amounts in the leaves, catkins, buds, and inner bark [24]. SEASONAL DEVELOPMENT : Butternut flowers from April to June, depending on location. The fruit matures in September and October and usually remains on the tree until after leaf fall [4,12].


SPECIES: Juglans cinerea
FIRE ECOLOGY OR ADAPTATIONS : Butternut is very susceptible to fire. Aboveground portions are easily killed by fire, and sprouting from the root crown or stump is rare [24,32]. POSTFIRE REGENERATION STRATEGY : survivor species; on-site surviving deep underground stems off-site colonizer; seed carried by animals or water; postfire yr 1&2


SPECIES: Juglans cinerea
IMMEDIATE FIRE EFFECT ON PLANT : Butternut does not typically survive fires that destroy aboveground plant parts [24]. DISCUSSION AND QUALIFICATION OF FIRE EFFECT : NO-ENTRY PLANT RESPONSE TO FIRE : Butternut does not typically sprout after fire [22,24,32]. DISCUSSION AND QUALIFICATION OF PLANT RESPONSE : NO-ENTRY FIRE MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS : Butternut grows well in mixed hardwood forests that have been protected from fire [22]. A single hot fire or repeated cool fires can effectively eliminate butternut in mixed hardwood stands [32].

References for species: Juglans cinerea

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18. Matheron, M. E.; Mircetich, S. M. 1985. Relative resistance of different rootstocks of English walnut to six Phytophthora spp. that cause root and crown rot in orchard trees. Plant Disease. 69(12): 1039-1041. [11544]
19. Morris, L. A.; Mollitor, A. V.; Johnson, K. J.; Leaf, A. L. 1979. Forest management of floodplain sites in the northeastern United States. In: Johnson, R. Roy; McCormick, J. Frank, technical coordinators. Strategies for protection & mgmt of floodplain wetlands & other riparian ecosystems: Proceedings of the symposium; 1978 December 11-13; Callaway Gardens, GA. Gen. Tech. Rep. WO-12. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service: 236-242. [4364]
20. Nowacki, Gregory J.; Abrams, Marc D.; Lorimer, Craig G. 1990. Composition, structure, and historical development of northern red oak stands along an edaphic gradient in north-central Wisconsin. Forest Science. 36(2): 276-292. [11787]
21. Ontario Department of Lands and Forests. 1953. Forest tree planting. 2d ed. Bull. No. R 1. Toronto, Canada: Ontario Department of Lands and Forests, Division of Reforestation. 68 p. [12130]
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32. Ward, Jeffrey S.; Stephens, George R. 1989. Long-term effects of a 1932 surface fire on stand structure in a Connecticut mixed hardwood forest. In: Rink, George; Budelsky, Carl A., eds. Proceedings, 7th central hardwood conference; 1989 March 5-8; Carbondale, IL. Gen. Tech. Rep. NC-132. St. Paul, MN: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, North Central Forest Experiment Station: 267-273. [9389]
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