Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Black Walnut Stain

or Make Sure Your Gloves Don't Have Holes in Them.

Black Walnuts

I've been collecting and hulling black walnuts to enter in the upcoming community fair.  We have a pretty good crop this year and I was actually able to collect some before the critters squirreled them all away (pun intended). As you probably know, black walnuts produce a dark, persistent stain, so I wore gloves while handling them. However what I didn't realize was that the gloves had a couple of holes in them. Consequently, I ended up with two very dirty looking, stained fingers. When this has happened in the past, I  just waited the several weeks it took for the stain to wear off.  But this time, I thought I'd try something different since it was going to be embarrassing at work with my dirty looking fingers.

A little research revealed that people have tried everything to get rid of black walnut stain from full strength bleach to acetone. Of the many stain removers that were suggested, the only one I was comfortable with was lemon juice.

I started with just one finger. First I soaked it in the lemon juice, followed by scrubbing with a cloth soaked in lemon juice, and ended with washing it with soap and water. I repeated this cycle several times until my skin became tender. And what was the result? If you squint your eyes just right, I think the lemon juice helped a little.

I learned an important lesson from this experience. Next time, I'm going to check for holes in my gloves before I mess with black walnuts.

The stain remover that didn't work well.