Mulching – overlooked and underutilized

It shouldn’t be surprising that pecan trees grow better when mulched, as mulching mimics the natural state of trees growing in a forest where the forest floor is covered with a layer of decaying organic matter. Roots developing underneath this layer are growing in a favorable environment, where temperature and moisture are more uniform, soil...

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Shortest U.S. Pecan Crop Since 1998

The U.S. pecan crop appears to be about 170 million pounds, the shortest crop since 1998, according to Bill Goff, professor and Extension pecan specialist at Auburn University. Pecan industry forecasts made from June through September of 2013 estimated the U.S. crop at an average of 213.6 million pounds. Now that harvest is nearing completion...

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If not ‘Desirable’, what?

Desirable has been the mainstay cultivar in the Southeast for many years, surpassing ‘Stuart’ for the lead in new plantings many years back. And, it has been the mainstay for good reasons. Consistent production is the hallmark of ‘Desirable’. For many years, as a pecan consultant, I have had a task of estimating pecan crops...

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The pecan cultivar trial at Friendship Pecans

A pecan cultivar trial inviting industry-wide cooperation has been established at Friendship Pecans near Albany, Georgia. Our hope is that as many of the most-promising selections from all over the U.S. as possible can be evaluated side-by-side in one location. The experiment, initially, will have 4 trees each of 160 selections in a randomized complete...

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Mechanical crop thinning in the West

Pecan crop load management can be done in several ways. Hedging reduces crop in the short-term on the trees that are hedged. Since hedging is done routinely in the West, my discussion will focus more on crop load management by mechanical crop thinning. In this method, pioneered by Mike Smith, Ph.D., and others in Oklahoma...

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Pecan cultivar recommendations for the Southeast – 2013 update

Major advances in pecan cultivar development and selection have occurred in the past few years, requiring extensive evaluations and frequent updating of recommendations. Because the Alabama pecan industry has smaller growers, often without the equipment or economic incentive to spray intensively with large airblast sprayers, we have focused on pest-resistance to reduce spray requirements. We...

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Purchase, plant or renovate?

Following 4 years of pecan prices going up to unprecedented levels, a lot of people are interested in getting into pecan farming. There are various ways to do this. One way, the fastest way, is to purchase a producing orchard that is already in good shape and producing profitably. The main trouble with this approach is...

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Apply Herbicides On Soil!

Many pecan growers, we’ve observed, think you should spray herbicides onto existing weeds, rather than onto soil. This concept is true for that class of herbicides referred to as post-emergence, like glyphosate (Roundup, many others) or Gramoxone. Several problems can develop if you limit your herbicide use to post-emergence herbicides only. One problem is you...

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Alabama Pecan Growers Annual Conference

Thursday, Sept. 16, 2010 8:00 a.m.            Registration 8:30 a.m.            Call to Order and Introduction of Guests – Roger Cook 8:40 a.m.            Opening Remarks – Ron Zorn 8:50 a.m.            Introduction of William Batchelor, New Dean of Auburn College of Agriculture Moderator — Allen Burnie 9:00 a.m.            “A trip to China to promote pecans” – Matt Goff 9:20 a.m.            “Update on early harvest cultivars” – Bill Goff...

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Scab: Pecan Enemy Number One

In the Southeast, the number one enemy of pecans is the fungus disease pecan scab. Growers were painfully reminded in the 2009 season of the severity and damage caused by this disease. In 2007, an on-year crop but a very dry season, Georgia produced 150 million pounds of pecans. In 2009, an on-year crop but...

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