The Butternut tree, also known as Juglans cinerea, is a medium-sized deciduous tree native to the eastern United States and southern Canada. It is a member of the walnut family and is closely related to the black walnut tree. The butternut tree grows to a height of 40 to 60 feet and has a rounded crown. It has gray-brown bark that is deeply furrowed and divided into ridges. The leaves are pinnately compound, with 11 to 17 leaflets that are 2 to 4 inches long. They turn a bright yellow in the fall.
The butternut tree produces edible nuts that have a rich, buttery flavor and are popular in baking and cooking. The nuts are enclosed in a thick, green husk that splits open as they mature in the fall. The trees typically begin producing nuts when they are around 20 years old.The butternut tree prefers well-drained soil and full sun to partial shade. The tree is relatively disease-resistant but can be susceptible to butternut canker, a fungal disease that can kill the tree.
The butternut tree has a number of traditional medicinal uses, including as a treatment for constipation and skin irritations. The tree also has cultural significance for some Native American tribes, who have used its bark and nuts for food and medicine.
USDA Zone: 3-7
Mature Height: 40-60'
Mature Spread: 35-50'
Sun: Full Sun
Ripening Time: Late October
Scientific Name: Juglans cinerea