The butternut is native to eastern Canada in the Deciduous, the
Great Lakes, St. Lawrence and the Acadia forest regions. It grows
on a wide variety of soils but makes its best growth in sunny
sites on moist well drained, fertile soils in shallow valleys and
gradual slopes in a sheltered location. The root system is deep an
wide spreading making them extremely wind firm, but they do not
fare well as a shelter belt tree because of a tendency to dry out
in the winter winds.
The Butternut looks like a smaller version of cousin the Black
Walnut and is grown primarily as a shade tree although the crown
can be quite irregular in out line. The Butternut often has a
forked or crooked trunk suitable for climbing. The nuts are sweet
to the taste and contain a large amount of oil which makes
especially prized by squirrels.
The butternut roots secrete a chemical called "juglone" which
acts as a natural herbicide to other plants.