The honey locust tree’s most obvious feature is its abundance of thorns. Thorns on the branches, thorns on the trunk and thorns on the thorns. At first glance, this tree appears to be angry and ready for a fight. Its arsenal is quite apparent for anyone in doubt.
One may wonder, “What are honey locust trees good for?” Actually, quite a few things.
The pods from the honey locust tree are sweet and edible when mature (as opposed to the black locust tree’s poisonous pods). These pods may also be used to ferment for beer. Just be careful of the leaves, they are poisonous.
The honey locust’s wood is high quality and durable and is often used to create furniture.
And those huge, stabbing thorns may even be used as nails.
The honey locust is sometimes planted near black walnut trees. They love to grow together and nurture each other. And black walnuts, once cracked open, are yummy.
So, the honey locust isn’t all bad. It just has a bad reputation.
Some nurseries sell thornless, podless varieties for shade and ornamental uses. But where’s the adventure in that?
The native honey locust has many offerings for those brave enough to get to know it. Just remember to wear a suit of armor and most of all, do not taunt the honey locust tree.