The Q&A Archives: Black Walnut Tree, Peppers & Tomatoes

Question: Do black walnut trees have an effect on tomato and sweet pepper plants? My tomato plants grow for a while and then one day I find a few of them wilted, then Ioose them all. My pepper plants also don't do well. Some people say you can't grow anything around black walnut trees, but my other vegggies do fine?

Answer: Peppers and tomatoes and other vegetable plants in the nightshade family including eggplant and potato are very sensitive to black walnut trees and the juglone exuded by their roots, and to some extent their leaves and twigs. A number of ornamental plants are also sensitive to it, especially azaleas and rhododendrons. Other plants don't seem to mind it at all, although the tree will still compete with any plant for water, nutrients and sunlight.

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