Thursday, October 18, 2012

Walnut Trees :( Gawd I Hate Them...

My side yard is blessed/cursed with two humongous walnut trees, one Black, one English.

Some genius that owned my property formerly decided planting them both on the lot corner edges was a good idea.

Now don't get me wrong, I love them in summer and enjoy the shade they bring to the yard. I just wish they didn't have to make such a mess the rest of the year.

In spring, I get to pick up the catkins that fall and turn black along with the leaf stems from the previous year from the Black walnut.

Late summer involves the daily picking up of nuts, nut shells and husks that turn the concrete black.

I was lucky this year to escape the plague of tent caterpillars that often take up residence in late summer. One evening, I saw a flock of starlings invade the tree and thoroughly pick it over - thank you! The caterpillars enjoy making their way into the house on occasion. Although the tents are ugly, I do appreciate their eating efforts thus reducing the leaves I have to pick up and adding a little fertilizer to the yard..

Then fall comes and it seems that my trees have to be the last in the hood to turn color and lose their leaves, which means cold, rainy December clean up days for me.

And just to make things even worse, I cannot compost the leaves due to the poison (juglone) in the walnut leaves, so I try to get everything out of the flower beds.  I can't say that I have noticed any of the perennials not thriving under the trees, which is good.

To end my rant about walnut trees, in their defense, I would probably complain about any tree being messy.  The new evergreen southern Magnolia, seems to be catching up in the messy department. So I guess I'll just smile and clean up my leaves in the rain.