Thursday, May 3, 2012

Flat Aggie visits a California Walnut Farm

Dear Friends,
I have spent the last few days in California on a walnut farm! Mrs. L introduced me to her daughter Sugar Plum Fairy who is in the first grade also and they took me on an exciting walk around the farm.  At first, I was nervous because I though these were caterpillars.

Sugar Plum Fairy and Mrs. L explained that they are called catkins and are just the flower of a walnut tree.  There are different kinds of walnut trees and they all have flowers and leaves and nuts at different times .  These catkins on the ground are from trees call Hartley Walnuts.  The catkins that are still on these trees are called Chandlers.

This is what the catkins look like before they get big…

They fall off the tree after they have been pollinated and look funny on the ground.  

Mrs. L’s neighbor just planted a new walnut orchard. An orchard is a lot of trees planted together.  They look just like funny sticks right now, but we found some already growing some brand new baby leaves!  The sticks are painted white so they don’t get sunburned!  The trees won’t need the sunscreen in a few years when they get big and make their own shade.

Mrs. L, Sugar Plum Fairy and I walked and had fun.  Sugar Plum Fairy even gave me a shoulder ride!  The walnut trees behind us only have the catkins on them and no leaves yet.

These trees are called Hartley Walnuts and already have lots and lots of leaves.

When the leaves grow big, that means the catkins have already fallen off…wherever there was a catkin, a walnut will grow. There sure will be a lot of walnuts soon!

Mrs. L let us climb a tree!  It was soooo tall and so much fun!

I asked Mrs. L what people use walnuts for and she said, “Oh LOTS of things! There are walnuts in cookies and candy and even some kinds of bread.  They smash them up and make Walnut Butter…just like Peanut Butter and oil to cook with, too.  Sometimes, people take lots and lots of the walnut shells and crunch them up.  They put them on their roads so there isn’t so much dust, like here.”

Wow!  I didn’t know there were so many things you can use walnuts for!
Mrs. L let Sugar Plum Fairy and I sit on the Quad, too!  She wouldn’t let us ride it because we were too little, though.

While we were sitting and taking a rest, a lady bug came to say hello to us…It sure tickled!
Look how different the trees are…they are all walnuts, too!

Sugar Plum Fairy was so nice to me and we had a good time walking back to their house.

Before I left, Sugar Plum Fairy and I played with her new puppies!

I had a lot of fun at the Walnut Farm! Thank you letting me visit!

Thank you!  What a fun adventure she had!  For more of Jen's adventures visit her blog The Nut House Five.  To learn more about walnuts check out her walnut posts and don't miss the videos on her Walnut Harvest post!

1 comment:

LindaG said...

Not sure what's going on, but all the picture links are broke for me. :-/
I use Chrome, but I don't think that is it because I've enjoyed other posts.

Glad Flat Aggie found so many uses for Walnuts because I did not know that, either!

Happy Wednesday to you! :o)