The Value of Black Walnut Wood


For its wood to be considered for use as building materials, a walnut tree must be large and of good quality. Quality trees have numerous qualities which cause a rise in the economic value of the hardwood. As of January 2010, Woodworkers Source quotes a price of $8.99 per 4x4 plank of black walnut lumber. The price increases as the plank size increases; this price is subject to change with changes in the market.

Lumber uses

  • The uses for black walnut wood include timber for furniture, bowls and crafts. It's also used to create thin sheets of veneer.

Trunk Diameter

  • Good lumber and veneer trees need to be at least 15 inches in. Black walnut trees of 18 inches in diameter or greater are preferred.

Trunk Height

  • For hardwoods like black walnut, the merchantable height is a minimum of 8 to 10 feet of trunk growth before hitting major branches. Quality, salable trees are typically several times higher.


  • Fewer defects equal better quality and a higher price tag for black walnut wood. Typical defects include swelling, cracks, diseases and pest damage. Knots lower the tree's usability and value.

Foreign Objects

  • Urban grown black walnut trees often have no value as lumber or veneer trees. They frequently contain foreign objects, such as nails, hooks, wires and insulation.

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  • Photo Credit Image by, courtesy of Kevin Dooley
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