Anyone know of source for Black Locust seedlings? : LUSENET : Beyond the Sidewalks : One Thread

I'm looking for a source for Black Locust seedlings. I had ordered some in the past from Bear Creek Nursury but now that they're out of business I have no idea where to find a source for them now.

I know of Oikos Tree Crops in Michigan (about as good as Bear Creek, IMO) but they're catalog doesn't list Black Locust.

I'm so depressed that Bear Creek is no longer in business. I loved the selection they offered... :-(

-- Anonymous, April 06, 2001


I didn't even know Bear Creek was out of business. How many to you want?? Michigan nurseries might carry them, I could check if you like.

-- Anonymous, April 06, 2001

If you can check on availability I would really appreciate it, Diane. I would like to put in another 10 trees.

But I may have to wait until next year to buy them as I've got quite a few seedlings to get in this year - our wind break is in serious need of replacements. And my wife keeps telling me that we've ordered enough trees for this year so I don't want to end up in the dog house with her. ;-)

-- Anonymous, April 06, 2001

I'm sure Musser has em; they have everything!

-- Anonymous, April 06, 2001

You can get them at Carino Nurseries 1-800-223-7075, $45 for 100 2yr olds. This is a great company we used in the past for Christmas trees. Quality was always excellent.

Alternatively, you could dig them out of my top pasture. I have to mow them again very soon!!!

-- Anonymous, April 06, 2001

Thanks, guys.

I did search Musser's web site and they carry them, too so now I have two sources. Much appreciated!

-- Anonymous, April 06, 2001

We got ours from Musser three years ago, just little tiny sticks, they were. Now, one of them is a great big tree with lots of branches, just beautiful.(The goats ate the rest. We've mostly given up on planting trees.) You do know they have thorns, right? Catalpas are another that have grown well for us here in MI. Am I the only one who likes these trees? I always hear people complain about the mess they make, but I love'em. I hear that bats like them, too.

-- Anonymous, April 08, 2001

Hi Shannon, I grew up with a very nice catalpa tree in our yard. I never thought it was all that messy and would love to have one now. My brothers and I used to gather the worms and sell them for bait.

-- Anonymous, April 08, 2001


We have black locust in our yard. If you want, I could send you about 5 pods full of seeds, and you can start your own. I guess they grow better if you nick the seeds before planting them out. I know they aren't seedlings, but they would be free.

-- Anonymous, April 09, 2001

Hey Marty, if I send you a self addressed stamped envelope would you do the same for me??? I would love to grow some and am like on a limited budget so would really appreciate it.

-- Anonymous, April 09, 2001

Hey, Jim, et al, have you tried propagating them from softwood cuttings? I've been doing that a lot lately, from all kinds of trees and shrubs, with over ninety percent success. I started some black locust a couple of weeks ago, and they are just starting to leaf out, so I guess they will make it. Also did some pink flowering locust, which I am concerned about, because the parent tree seems to be grafted onto a black locust root stock. (I actually got the cuttings from some suckers coming off the base of the pink locust)

In my experience, black locust grow like crazy, once they are established. JOJ

-- Anonymous, April 10, 2001

Marty: Thanks for the offer, I sent an email to you in case you don't see this response. If you email me your mailing address I'll send you a SASE.


diane: If you get seeds too we'll have to keep in touch and compare notes on how well our seeds germinate.

JOJ: Thanks for the info on softwood cuttings - I may give that a try. I think I read somewhere that you can also start them from root cuttings, too. I also read of a technique of starting cuttings in a potato - just stick the cutting into a potato and plant the whole thing in the ground. The potato is supposed to provide the ideal environment for the cutting. Who da thunk it...

By the way, welcome to the forum. :-)

-- Anonymous, April 13, 2001

Diane (and anyone else interested),

Please e-mail me privately if you'd like some free seeds. I'll then e-mail you my addresse for a SASE. I'll be happy to share as long as there are pods.

JOJ, how do you root your cuttings? I'd like to try this with some of our trees' and bushes'.


-- Anonymous, April 17, 2001

FYI there is a black locust cultivar that is very straight growing.It was found on the Indian Reservation in NY.They had developed it over many years. It has been propagated by a guy up there.I have his post card somewhere.I just saw it here on my desk abt a week ago! Hey it's around.

He sells the seedlings.They are pricey,but you could get a few and propagate from there.One of these years I'm going to get a few myself.

JOJ is right -it is pretty easy to propagate vegetatively.I use the bury and pin down in the ground approach. Cut a slit in a young sprout (still attached to the parent) and bury that part.The cutting stimulates root formation.You will have to pin it down with a piece of wire or it will prob. pop up.Leave it there abt a year??. Roots will form and you can then sever it from the parent and plant. Lazy way. I've done roses,blueberry,azaleas etc. same way. I'm not good at checking up on things for watering, so the easier the better, for me.

More than depressed abt Bear Creek. Big Bummer! Well, I saved the catalogue, for all the varietial descriptions. Found a couple of other possible companies for the future. Ah,well.

-- Anonymous, April 17, 2001

FYI there is a black locust cultivar that is very straight growing.It was found on the Indian Reservation in NY.They had developed it over many years. It has been propagated by a guy up there.I have his post card somewhere.I just saw it here on my desk abt a week ago! Hey it's around.


I would be VERY interested in the name and mailing address of this guy.

I know you're busy right now so don't worry about trying to dig up that postcard right this minute. Just keep me in mind when you come across it and have the time to post the info.


-- Anonymous, April 17, 2001

Jim, Thanks for the welcome; you're too kind. (Hi, Sharon; thanks for the invite). Thanks also for the idea of the potato, Jim; I'd never heard of it.

Sharon, I've tried the method you describe, which is one of four methods of propagating woody plants from cuttings. It's supposed to be the most reliable, but I have never had ANY success with it. Go figure. I've also never had any success with "hardwood cuttings". I've only had success with "softwood cuttings". Here's how I have had the best luck:

Take the cuttings either at leaf fall or when the plant is just budding out in the spring. I've had some luck at other times of the year, but these two times have been almost fool proof so far.

I was "taught" that the "proper" size of branch to use was one which had the diameter of a pencil, more or less. But when I started playing around with this, it soon became apparent that that left a whole lot of smaller stock, so I started planting the smaller diameter twigs as well. I've actually had a LITTLE bit better success rate with the smaller stuff. So what I do is cut off a branch of first year's growth where it's about the diameter of a pencil, start at the bottom (large) end, and start cutting until I reach the tip.

Cut the branch off just ABOVE a leaf or a leaf node (you know, where the next leaf is about to come from. This is the healthiest for the parent plant.

Now, you've got this twig, maybe two or three feet long. Start at the bottom. Cut off everything below the first leaf node. Count up at least four leaf nodes; this is how much of the twig you'll put in the ground. Now count up three (though I've also used only one or two sometimes) leaf nodes, and cut the twig just above this level.. Plant this with the four leaf nodes in the pot. (Some plants, e.g." purple smoke" have tons of leaf nodes very close together. If you only planted the twig to the depth of four leaf nodes, it would only be in the ground about half an inch! Bad idea).

Now, with the twig that is still left, cut off everything below the lowest leaf node, and repeat the process above. You'll usually get three or four cuttings per branch this way. Sometimes even more, if the branch is very long.

If you do decide to do this cutting bit when the plant is leafed out (and of course some plants are always leafed out) you'll have to pluck the bottom four (or more) rows of leaves off (they wiil become the start of the new roots). Then, leave three or so leaves, or leaf clusters, which will be above ground. It's supposed to be a good idea (and it does seem to work for me) to take some clean, sharp snips or scissors, and cut the outer half the leaves off. It sounds really stupid, but it's supposed to lower the evapotranspiration rate of the plant, and put less stress on it while its roots get started.

Now, you've got all these cuttings waiting to get planted (don't leave them lying about in the sun). Take a bunch of gallon pots (my favorite size, anyhow). Punch a bunch of holes in it using whatever you've got lying around, e.g. a piece of rebar, a stiff twig, a small pipe, etc). Slide one cutting per hole into the dirt., just deep enough to cover the fourth leaf node (unless it's one of those weirdo cuttiigs, like the purple smoke)

Soak the dirt in the pot, which helps to fill in the hole with the cutting in it.

Oh, by the way, use sand or nice light sandy loam (that's what I have for garden soil here) Lucky me! (yeah, lucky. Except I had to BUY it all).

ALL my training, and all the books I've read about this say that, with most plants, you have to use rooting hormone to get the things to root. I bought some, like a good boy. But then, when I went to get started, I couldn't find it. So I gave it a shot without the hormone. This was three years ago, and I've had such a high success rate (like, I don't remember any variety that I haven't had at least some success without it, and most are 90 to 100% successful) that I quit looking for it. Maybe there's some natural root hormone in my topsoil. I don't know. I don't ask. I just keep on starting plants. My plan is to start selling trees and shrubs at our local grower's market, but so far I have either kept the things for landscaping my own place, or (mostly) given them to friends, neighbors and relatives. Which is fine, too.

Sorry this was so long winded; I'm sure you can find much more concise instructions in a gardening book. Hope ya'll have as much fun as I do, and have equally good success rates!


-- Anonymous, April 17, 2001

JOJ, thankyou for your posting - seems very clear and understandable to me, better than most books I have read - thanks for taking the time.

-- Anonymous, April 17, 2001

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