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The New York State Nut Tree Trail

by John Wertis

The John Gordon Demonstration Nut Grove near Trumansburg, NY is just one of the possible stops on the evolving New York State Nut Tree Trail. John Gordon was a well-known horticulturist with a nursery near Buffalo. He specialized in breeding and growing woody plants; particularly nut trees, paw-paws and persimmons.  He was one of the founding members of the New York Nut Growers Association; the organization that features the “Nut Tree Trail” on their website at

The “Trail” is more than a map on a website, however. Each site identified is the home to growing nut trees of one or more species. At each site a contact person is identified who will be willing and able to answer your questions about the plants growing there. Black walnuts, butternuts, shagbark hickories, shellbark hickories, pecans, hazelnuts, heartnuts, English walnuts, American chestnuts, and hybrid chestnuts can be found at one site or another.

Some sites are on state lands or college properties open to the public year around. Other sites are on private lands and accessible by appointment. More sites are sure to be identified and added to the “Trail”. Perhaps you know of a flourishing nut tree orchard in NY that we have overlooked?  You can nominate these sites and see them added to the Trail” by following the simple directions on the NYNGA website. Join us in educating the general public about the benefits of nut trees and the fruit they produce.

For more information on the internship, or to report a rare tree, visit, or contact John Wertis, president, at (607) 387-4331, or


6 thoughts on “The New York State Nut Tree Trail

  1. Tim Barlette says:

    I am looking to start a Nut Growing Tree Farm. Is there anyone I could ask for advice with in my area (Chautauqua County) just south of Buffalo NY? I would very much appreciate it.

  2. Tara Hammonds says:

    Hi Tim, thanks for your interest! Please contact the author, John Wertis, at (607) 387-4331 or, as he may be able to give you some advice for your farm.

  3. Ron says:

    I am trying to improve my deer habitat in Jefferson County NY and I would like to plant fruit and nut trees. My question is: Will Dunstan Chestnut and persimmon trees grow in zone 4?

  4. Carli Fraccarolli says:

    Hi Ron, thanks for your interest! Unfortunately we do not have staff that specialize in fruit and nut trees. Please contact the author, John Wertis, at (607) 387-4331 or, with your questions. He may be able to give you some answers and advice.

  5. Heidi Hoyt says:

    I believe I have a Buffalo Nut tree growing just off my lawn in a heavily wooded area. Is this possible? I understand they are parasitic. I can forward a picture of leaves and drupes.

  6. klr235 says:

    Hi Heidi,

    I would recommend reaching out to the author of this article at with your inquiry.


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