little walnut
Juglans microcarpa

Secondary Names:
Texas walnut, nogalito

Leaf Type: Deciduous
Texas Native:
Tree Description:

A small tree to 30 feet and a trunk to 18" in diameter, often leaning or twisted, with an open, irregular, rounded crown. A miniature version of its relative the black walnut (Juglans nigra).

Range/Site Description:

Streambanks, arroyos, and dry, gravelly riverbeds or sandbars throughout southwest and West Texas; almost always found near a source of water.


Alternate, once-compound, 10" to 15" long, with 11 to 25 leaflets, the longest ones in the middle of the leaf rather than at either end. Leaflets are 2" to 3" long, narrow, only 0.5" to 0.75" wide, and finely toothed along the margin. Leaves are strongly scented when bruised and there are no prickles or thorns.


Male flowers descend from the twigs as catkins 2" to 4" long, greenish-yellow in early spring; female flowers on new growth at the end of twigs, indistinct.


A small, round nut enclosed in a green leathery husk with no seams measuring 0.5" to 0.75" in diameter. Fruits turn black by the end of autumn.


Dark brown, thick and rough, with ridges and deep furrows.


Fenceposts, cabinets, furniture, paneling, and veneers. Sometimes planted for wildlife or as a landscape specimen.

Similar Species:

Arizona walnut (Juglans major) has fewer leaflets and a larger fruit and nut.

Interesting Facts:

Native Americans used the wood to fashion spears for hunting.

Back   Print results