A few basic facts about black walnut trees are that their scientific name is Juglans nigra, they can reach a maximum height of 150 feet and they have a trunk diameter that ranges between two and five feet. A toxic substance called jugalone is found in the leaves, roots and bark of this tree, and it can adversely affect plants, such as tomatoes, mountain laurels, apples, azaleas and potatoes, as noted by the Ohio State University Extension.
If any of these plants are planted too near a black walnut tree, they do not flourish or can die. However, some plants that can thrive near a black walnut tree include morning glory, rose of Sharon, pansies, black raspberries, plums and squash, as noted by the Ohio State University Extension. Black walnut trees mainly grow in the eastern and central regions of the United States.
The compound leaves of the walnut tree can range in size from 12 to 24 inches. This flowering tree produces flowers between the months of April and June. The fruit is the nut, which is a food source for both humans and animals. Another singular characteristic of this tree is that its bark is black and grooved. This tree can do well in fertile soil and well-drained soil, such as sandy or silt loam. It can also grow well along streams and rivers.
The tree is also valuable for its high-quality wood, which is used to make furniture and cabinets. Iowa is a top producer of walnut lumber.