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Kentucky Color: Black Locust White and more

Now is the time for some prime time viewing of Black Locust in its glorious spring pose
For next earlier Kentucky Color, see Kentucky Color: Loblolly Dreadlock Explosion

By Billy Joe Fudge
Retired District Forester, Kentucky Division of Forestry

The countryside is awash in white thanks to the splendid display being put on by Black Locust. You just do not want to miss it.

The recent spring rains haven't dampered the display at all, so between now and the weekend should be prime viewing for those who want to see Black Locust in its glorious spring pose.

Although Black Locust is not a highly prized timber species, its wood is highly prized for other reasons.

A unit of locust firewood has more BTUs than hickory and considerably less ash residue to boot.

A locust fence post will probably outlast about any other type maybe even the steel, brought on posts that are purchased at the local farm store. However be prepared to use screws rather than nails if the post is seasoned.

Some folks say they might even be harder than steel posts. There are a couple of yard gate posts at the Homeplace on Green River which have been in service for near on to 60 years.

Black Locust is a great erosion control plant. They have a wide fibrous root system that fixes nitrogen in the soil thus holding the soil and enriching it at the same time. On the right kind of soils they can also put down a tap root sometimes as much 25 feet deep.

Last but very sweet Black Locust provides the raw materials for the most tasty, according to most, honey known to man. Locust honey is light in color and being for the most part the first honey of the season it is highly sought after.

This story was posted on 2010-04-27 14:43:47
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Kentucky Color: Black Locust White and More

2010-04-27 - Photo by B.J. Fudge. Adair Co., KY
Black Locust is putting on one of nature's greatest spring shows right now. While not so highly prized as timber, its wood has many valuable uses, and it provides the raw material for themost tasty, according to most, honey known to man.

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