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Walnut, California
City of Walnut
View of Mt. San Antonio College and surrounding area
View of Mt. San Antonio College and surrounding area
Location of Walnut in Los Angeles County, California
Location of Walnut in Los Angeles County, California
Walnut, California is located in the United States
Walnut, California
Walnut, California
Location in the United States
Country  United States
State  California
County Los Angeles
Incorporated (city) January 19, 1959
Named for Rancho Los Nogales
(English: Ranch of the Walnut Trees)
 • Total 9.00 sq mi (23.30 km2)
 • Land 8.99 sq mi (23.29 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.01 km2)  0.04%
561 ft (171 m)
 • Total 29,172
 • Estimate 
 • Density 3,301.27/sq mi (1,274.67/km2)
Time zone UTC-8 (PST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-7 (PDT)
ZIP Codes
91788, 91789, 91795
Area code(s) 909, 626
FIPS code 06-83332
GNIS feature IDs 1652808, 2412173

Walnut is a city in the eastern part of Los Angeles County in the U.S. state of California. Money's Best Places to Live ranked Walnut #70 in 2009 and #57 in 2011, the highest ranking for a California city in both years. The city was also ranked #49 on the list in 2013, but was not the highest ranked California city that year. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 29,172, and in 2019 the population was estimated at 29,685.

The greater Walnut Valley is located between the steep San Jose Hills mountain range to the north, and the gentle Puente Hills to the south. Quality housing consists of master-planned single family homes ranging in size from 1,800 to 11,200 square feet (170 to 1,040 m2). The city hosts a highly ranked public school system—the Walnut Valley Unified School District, which has been ranked by numerous sources as one of the top public school districts in Southern California as well as Mt. San Antonio College. Walnut is one of the cities with the lowest crime rates in the San Gabriel Valley.

The city covers nearly 9 square miles (23 km2) and is home to hundreds of businesses. According to the 2010 United States Census, Walnut has a median household income at one of the top-earning percentiles in the country at $101,250.

The city's name is derived from the Rancho Los Nogales Mexican land grant, nogales being the Spanish word for "walnut trees"; the native California black walnut is a common tree, native to the San Jose Hills. The City of Walnut is a general law city incorporated on January 19, 1959. It is governed by a city council/city manager form of government. A five-member city council is elected by the residents, and a mayor is elected annually by the council to serve a twelve-month term. A city manager is appointed by the council to oversee the daily activities of the city.


Walnut is located on the southern slopes of the San Jose Hills, with West Covina to the north and west, Pomona to the east, Diamond Bar, Rowland Heights, and the City of Industry to the south, and La Puente to the west. Several small creeks (i.e. Snow Creek, Lemon Creek) run mostly to the south toward the valley of San Jose Creek, which runs west to the San Gabriel River.


The history of Walnut dates back to the indigenous Tongva people. Spanish missionaries who arrived in the 18th century called the indigenes Gabrieleño, because the area where they lived was controlled by the San Gabriel Mission. The Walnut area was part of the network of outlying ranches used for the grazing of cattle and sheep by the Mission.

Following secularization of the missions in the 1830s, former mission lands were divided into ranchos, and given away as land grants by the Mexican government of Alta California. In the Walnut area, the first grants were Rancho San Jose (granted to Ricardo Vejar and Ygnacio Palomares in 1837); Rancho Los Nogales (granted to Jose De La Cruz Linares in 1840); and Rancho La Puente (granted to John Rowland and William Workman in 1842). In 1868, John Rowland and William Workman divided Rancho La Puente, leaving Rowland the eastern half and Workman the western half. Rowland’s land included the western portion of Walnut and the adjacent community now called Rowland Heights. The land was used mainly for raising cattle and growing wheat, grapes, and fruit trees (mostly citrus).

In 1895, the first U.S. post office was established and given the name "Lemon". In 1908, the post office name was changed to Walnut. As a reminder of those early days, the U.S. Post Office is on Lemon Avenue, one of the town's main streets.

The City of Walnut’s Bicentennial Commission selected the construction of Lemon Creek Park and the restoration of the William R. Rowland Adobe Redwood Ranch House as Walnut’s bicentennial project. In 1872, the Lemon Creek Park area became the property of Sheriff William Rowland, who inherited the 29,000-acre (120 km2) ranch from his father, John Rowland. The modest structure built in 1883 served as the home of Mr. Meridith, ranch foreman for William Rowland. The adobe redwood ranch house is one of the few remaining original ranch style redwood and adobe structures in the area. On October 1, 1975, the State Landmark Committee placed the W.R. Rowland ranch house in the National Registry of Historical Places.

Walnut, California, is sometimes confused with the city of Walnut Creek in Northern California.

Walnut Family Festival

Walnut holds an annual "Walnut Family Festival." On the day of festival, several streets in the area (such as portions of Lemon and La Puente) are closed in the morning and a parade is held in which many local clubs and groups participate. Later in the afternoon, a fair with booths, games, food, and activities is held in Suzanne Park, adjacent to Suzanne Middle School. The Walnut Family Festival usually occurs in early or mid-October.

Mt. SAC Relays

Mt. SAC flame
Olympic Flame and wall of honor at Hilmer Lodge Stadium

Started in 1959, the Mt. SAC Relays is an annual track and field festival held primarily at Hilmer Lodge Stadium on the Mt. San Antonio College campus. The April festival attracts many elite athletes from around the world to the city of Walnut. This meet and other elite track meets held at the stadium, including the 1968 Olympic Trials and two editions of the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships have emblazoned the identification of "Walnut, California" in numerous national records in athletics around the world. At various points in time, many world records were set at the Mt. SAC Relays.

The October Mt. SAC Cross Country Invitational, run in the hills surrounding the stadium, proclaims itself to be the largest Cross Country meeting in the world. Much of the same course is used as the annual CIF Southern Section championships and the western qualifier for the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships.

Surrounding suburban cities


Historical population
Census Pop.
1960 934
1970 5,992 541.5%
1980 12,478 108.2%
1990 29,105 133.3%
2000 30,004 3.1%
2010 29,172 −2.8%
2019 (est.) 29,685 1.8%
U.S. Decennial Census

2010 census

According to the 2010 United States Census, Walnut had a median household income of $101,250, with 6.2% of the population living below the federal poverty line.

The 2010 United States Census reported that Walnut had a population of 29,172. The population density was 3,242.8 people per square mile (1,252.0/km2). The racial makeup of Walnut was 18,567 (63.6%) Asian, 6,913 (23.7%) White (12.5% Non-Hispanic White), 824 (2.8%) African American, 69 (0.2%) Native American, 28 (0.1%) Pacific Islander, 1,750 (6.0%) from other races, and 1,021 (3.5%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5,575 persons (19.1%).

The Census reported that 29,138 people (99.9% of the population) lived in households, 22 (0.1%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 12 (0%) were institutionalized.

There were 8,533 households, out of which 3,492 (40.9%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 6,298 (73.8%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 985 (11.5%) had a female householder with no husband present, 394 (4.6%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 163 (1.9%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 26 (0.3%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 627 households (7.3%) were made up of individuals, and 237 (2.8%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.41. There were 7,677 families (90.0% of all households); the average family size was 3.55.

The population was spread out, with 6,088 people (20.9%) under the age of 18, 3,092 people (10.6%) aged 18 to 24, 6,089 people (20.9%) aged 25 to 44, 10,339 people (35.4%) aged 45 to 64, and 3,564 people (12.2%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43.1 years. For every 100 females, there were 96.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.6 males.

There were 8,753 housing units at an average density of 973.0 per square mile (375.7/km2), of which 7,536 (88.3%) were owner-occupied, and 997 (11.7%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 0.8%; the rental vacancy rate was 4.4%. 25,504 people (87.4% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 3,634 people (12.5%) lived in rental housing units.

Proposed NFL Stadium

In April 2008, billionaire-land developer and co-owner of the Los Angeles Lakers and Kings, Edward P. Roski, unveiled plans for the construction of an $800 million NFL stadium in the neighboring City of Industry. In March 2009, Walnut filed a lawsuit opposing construction of the stadium, but dropped those charges in September.

On October 23, 2009, California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill allowing the 75,000-seat stadium to be built in neighboring Industry in hopes of attracting an NFL team there. This bill would also nullify a lawsuit filed by local residents over the project's environmental impact report.


Shea Homes, and the United States divisions of the Filipino home video company Viva Video, Inc. and the Japanese card game company Bushiroad are based in Walnut.

According to the 2010 United States Census, Walnut had a median household income of $101,250, with 6.2% of the population living below the federal poverty line.

According to the city's 2017 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the principal employers in the city are:

Principal Employers in Walnut, CA
Rank Employer # of employees % of total employment
1 Mount San Antonio College 3,775 49%
2 Ninas Mexican Food, Inc. 140 2%
3 Ronsin Photocopy Inc. 124 2%
4 Recruiter Exchange Inc 108 1%
5 Edro Engineering Company, Inc. 84 1%
6 Stater Brothers Market 81 1%
7 Sodexo, Inc. 76 1%
8 Vons #2167 73 1%
9 Applebee's Neighborhood Grill 67 1%
10 TJ Maxx #682 66 1%


Primary education in Walnut is generally served by the prestigious Walnut Valley Unified School District (WVUSD), which has been ranked by numerous sources to be one of the top public school districts in all of Southern California; it also serves parts of the city of Diamond Bar. Schools located in and around Walnut include:

  • C.J. Morris Elementary School
  • Collegewood Elementary School
  • Oswalt Academy (Formerly known as Oswalt Elementary School) (Rowland Unified School District)
  • Vejar Elementary School
  • Walnut Elementary School
  • Westhoff Elementary School
  • Suzanne Middle School
  • Southlands Christian Schools
  • South Pointe Middle School
  • Chaparral Middle School
  • Ronald Hockwalt Academies (Formerly known as Del Paso High School)
  • Walnut High School
  • Diamond Bar High School

Portions of the western side of Walnut are also served by the Rowland Unified School District.

In addition, Mt. San Antonio College, one of the California Community Colleges, is also located in Walnut near its border with Pomona.


The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department (LASD) operates the Walnut/Diamond Bar Station in Walnut.

The Los Angeles County Department of Health Services operates the Pomona Health Center in Pomona, serving Walnut.

Notable people

  • Kyle MacKinnon, ice hockey center who played for the San Diego Gulls
  • Darius McCrary, actor; known most for playing Eddie Winslow on the television show Family Matters

Images for kids

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Walnut (California) para niños

National Hispanic Heritage Month on Kiddle
Eminent Hispanic scientists
Walter Alvarez
Joel Salinas
Jaime Escalante
Claudia Benitez-Nelson
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