After we had harvested our first batch of black walnuts I decided to research them a bit. I had heard they were a lot of work, but well worth the effort. The articles I read talked about the timing of harvest, hulling, and shelling the nuts. I read and heard lots of warnings about wearing gloves and that black walnuts can stain your skin.
So I felt I was at least marginally prepared when I sat down this afternoon to start removing the outer hull of the nuts. I wore gloves to make sure my hands didn’t stain. After nearly an hour of opening walnuts I decided to take a break. I pulled off the gloves and to my horror, my thumbs were nearly black!! Apparently the gloves were more porous than I realized. My hands never felt wet and I had no idea the stain was working its way through!
But it did and I’m here to tell you that black walnuts were aptly named.
I stopped immediately and went inside to try to get it off, which not shockingly, didn’t work! I looked up and tried a bunch of various methods to no avail. So… now I have black thumbs. A couple of my other fingers are a little tainted, but my thumbs look like burnt marshmallows!
I’m not sure how long it is going to take to wear off, but it looks absolutely ridiculous. If only the weather was cold enough to justify gloves 24/7 until it fades, but alas it isn’t, so I have to go out into the world with burnt marshmallow thumbs for the foreseeable future!
You might think this has dampened my resolve to finish my walnut experiment, but if anything I am more determined to see this project through to the end (funky thumbs and all!)