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By Andy Sherrod, Orchard Manager

One month to go before the pecans are ready for harvest. We’ve spent the last five months making sure the pecan trees have plenty of food, water, and sunlight (yes, sunlight … see our other posts relating to the management of sunlight) and now is not the time to let down.

Since the shells formed around the new pecan kernels during the month of August, they won’t be growing any bigger, so the critical part now is kernel filling. Once again, that means an ample supply of water.

It’s a shame to get this far only to end up with poorly filled kernels, so the final push is on. We’re running our irrigation system 24/7. Each tree gets 24 hours of irrigation water, and five days later it gets 24 hours more. That’s the equivalent of one inch of rain per week. But pecans need two inches of rain per week during the hot part of the summer. You see the problem. We could use a rain.

The same is true for the pecan trees in your own yard. If you’ve been vigilant to give them what they need, don’t stop now or it will be all for nothing.

Next month we talk about pecan harvest.

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