Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Juglans regia L.

Fully hardy, spreading tree with pinnate, aromatic leaves, to 30cm long, composed of up to 9 leaflets, bronze-purple when young, and edible nuts, to 5cm long.  To 30m.  [RHSD, Hortus, Hilliers’].

Horticultural & Botanical History

Cultivated in England for centuries for its timber, much esteemed for furniture making, for its edible nuts and for medicinal purposes.  Johnson’s Dictionary gives a date of introduction to Britain as 1562.  ‘The Walnut.  Juglans.  This grows to be a large tree, the leaves are a yellow green, & ye catkins yellowish.  It is planted in Walks, Parks & fields; and the catkins come out in April.  The bark is accounted a strong emetic, either green or dryed and powdered.  The green nuts are cordial & alexipharmic being of great use in all contagious malignant distempers, & even the Plague; they are one of the principal ingredients in the Treacle Water.  The nuts preserved are good to eat in a morning to prevent infection in the time of pestilential distempers.  Two or three ounces of the oil expressed from the ripe kernels, is a very good medicine for the stone and gravel.  The shells powdered or burnt are accounted restringent.’  [Blackwell pl.247/1737].

History at Camden Park

Listed in all published catalogues [T.604/1843].  A very large, mature tree in the Old Orchard has been identified as Juglans nigra L., the Black walnut, a North American tree planted extensively in Europe, including England in place of the less hardy Common Walnut and they were sometimes confused. It is possible that this is the plant introduced by Macarthur as Juglans regia.


Published Mar 19, 2009 - 03:37 PM | Last updated Mar 22, 2010 - 02:22 PM

Illustrated are the pinnate leaves, flowers, fruit and nut.  Blackwell pl.247, 1749.

Juglans regia L. | Blackwell pl.247/1749 | BHL

Family Juglandaceae
Region of origin

Europe to China

Common Name

Common walnut, English walnut, Persian walnut

Name in the Camden Park Record

Juglans regia - Walnut 

Confidence level medium