Day 4: Special Guest Post from our Senior Trail Vegetation Correspondent

Hej Road Warriors,

I’m loving the blog posts. Sunday was a tough day. Way to persevere! I’m rooting for ya! As a fellow biker I totally sympathize with the walnut woes. Armed with a laptop, internet, boredom, and insomnia, I am ARMCHAIR ANALYST MAN!

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It looks like the habitat of both white and black walnut species overlap with your route.

According to the US Forest Service, both species fruit from September to October.

According to USGS maps, Illinois will offer you no respite from either species. Things would have been bad if you were going through much of Missouri; 65% of the wild annual walnut harvest originates there.

Black walnuts will accompany you in Tennessee and Kentucky, but, according to the USDA, white walnuts should taper off. Although the native coverage of white walnuts in those states is extensive, they have been classified as “Threatened” and “Of Special Concern” in those states, respectively. Northern Mississippi will present no white walnuts and some black walnuts. Come south Mississippi, you will be free of any kind of walnut for the rest of that journey. Which is good; jambalaya and fresh walnut smell don’t mix anyhow.

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http://esp.cr.usgs.gov/data/little/

http://www.na.fs.fed.us/spfo/pubs/silvics_manual/volume_2/juglans/cinerea.htm
http://www.na.fs.fed.us/pubs/silvics_manual/volume_2/juglans/nigra.htm
http://plants.usda.gov/core/profile?symbol=JUCI (terrible map, but check out the legal tab)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juglans_nigra

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Am I “nuts” or what?

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Thanks ARMCHAIR ANALYST MAN!!

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