Hi Team, We have a walnut tree in the middle of our small orchard that is 35 years old. Last year we noticed that the leaves on the tree were smaller than usual and most of the nuts wound up sun burnt and unusable. This year the tree has forgotten to shoot, no leaves, no 'flowers' nothing. Some of the tips of the little branches are still pliable but no movement. I can't see any obvious problemswith the tree and everyhing else around it is doing just fine. Any ideas?
Where are you based Stephen? Is it an area prone to frost? Have you pruned the tree recently? And have you fed it?
Hi @greygardener I live in Sunraysia, Wentworth to be exact. The tree hase never been pruned, is fed four times a year and lives at the end of the septic tail. No major frosts this year. We had frosts about 10 years ago that froze the oranges on the tree and the walnut was not effected
I know nothing about walnuts except they tend to be last to be eaten in family assortments at our place, but this article suggests they only fruit two our of five years - https://ask.extension.org/questions/175496
Thanks @MartyH, great article. I love walnuts and would shell and freeze several buckets of them to get us through the year. Our tree produced 15 -20 buckets of nuts each year, but now there isn't a leaf on it and by now the nuts should have been abouy 30mm across. I am now resigned to the fact that it may become a peice of furniture. I cant seem to get the orientation right @Jason
Been meaning to look into this & reply for days but when I haven't been underwater I've been flat-out...
I had to hit the books (yes, real ones, not google ones...) about this as walnuts are one of the least commonly grown nut trees in Aus. & a lot of the online info relates to overseas conditions.
It seems your tree has a good history of fruiting so obviously it has been happy & healthy.
I was going to ask the typical questions – have there been any changes around the tree such as digging, soil added or removed etc, has there been chemicals used, has it been over-fed etc – when I joined the dots on a couple of things…
You mention it’s on the end of the septic tail. Have you had a wet winter or a wet period in the last 6-months?
According to the book I was referencing (Discovering Fruit & Nuts by Susanna Lyle) walnuts hate excess water.
To quote – “…very susceptible to waterlogging (24-hours of waterlogging can kill a tree)…”
Is this a possibility?
Oh dear. I hope the poor tree didn't get waterlogged at some stage. That would be very sad. I hope it shows some signs of life soon.