Ajuntament de Barcelona

Juglans regia

Joan Brossa Garden

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    According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the conservation status of this plant is near threatened.

    Species characteristics
    Southeastern Europe and Western Asia, from Greece to Himalaya Mountains
    Fresh lands to a height of 1,500 m

    Deciduous tree up to 25 m tall with short thick trunk (it can reach 2 m in girth). The branches are thick, straight and vigorous and the crown is wide and rounded. The silver or whitish grey bark is smooth and have stretch marks.

    The leaves, 20-40 cm long, are alternate and compound. They are composed of 5-9 oval or obovate leaflets, 6-15 cm long and 3-6 cm wide, with entire margin and finishing on an elongated tip. They are slightly leathery and have marked nerves on the lower side. When they sprout, they are reddish and later dark green.

    The masculine flowers and the feminine ones appear on the same plant, but on different branches. The small reddish feminine ones appear into bunches of 2-5 flowers at the tip of the same year branches. The greenish purple masculine ones appear (in groups of up to 3 flowers) into cylindrical hanging catkins (5-10 cm long) on the past year branches.

    The fruit (the walnut) is a greenish smooth globose drupe containing a single edible corrugated brown seed. The fruits appear into groups up to 4 over a short peduncle.

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    Uses and properties: 

    Walnut is harvested extensively because of its fruit, eaten fresh or used to make oil and liqueurs, and because of its high quality wood, very appreciated in the furniture and weapon industry.

    History and curiosities: 

    The scientific name, Juglans regia, consists of the genus name Juglans, coming from the Latin Jovis glans, "acorn of Jupiter", the Roman name for walnuts, and the Latin term regia, "royal".

    The common walnut was introduced into Europe very early, before the Roman age, and in America circa the 17th c.

    In Barcelona, there are a limited number of walnuts, a tree that can be found in rivers banks and fields sides with deep and fresh soils.

    For further information: 

    LÓPEZ GONZÁLEZ, Ginés A. Los árboles y arbustos de la Península Ibérica e Islas Baleares. (2 vol.) Madrid: Mundi-Prensa, 2001

    THE ROYAL HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY. Enciclopedia de plantas y flores. Barcelona: Grijalbo, 1996