When it falls in the fall, the black walnut is covered in a thick green husk that smells kind of like citrus fruits. After lying on the ground for a while, the husk turns black and rots away, revealing a coarse black shell. It takes a hard whack with a hammer to open the nut. If you crack it just right, you might find what looks like an owl’s face surrounding the sweet nutmeat. Learn more at mdc.mo.gov/field-guide.
Angie Daly Morfeld
Nichole LeClair Terrill