The Understory on Butternuts

Did you know that butternut trees were once one of the most common trees growing in the understory of the forests on Washington Island? The wood is highly prized and the nuts are great for baking and fresh eating. Sadly, most of them were killed by a fungus that causes cankers on the stem of the tree. In fact, I have only seen one butternut growing on the Island, but would love to hear about any trees you are aware of, especially if they are mature trees!

The good news is that a stand of butternut trees in Ontario, Canada were identified to have resistance to the disease, and we are beginning to grow several of these trees at Gathering Ground. We dream of the day when butternuts are reestablished on the Island. Imagine how happy the wildlife will be, as the nuts are a great food source for many a creature.

We hope to plant another 25 butternut trees ($12 each) at Gathering Ground this year. Please donate to help us pay for these trees.

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