As temperatures warm pecan trees have begun to bud out moving growers to monitor for late frost and first scab coverage earlier than normal here in the southeast.
Dr. Lenny Wells updated us on the 22nd of February warning that he seen earlier buds again this year in seedlings and expected we would be seeing our production orchard varieties to begin opening soon and here we are.
Across southern Georgia as well as northern Mexico we are seeing pecan trees bud out which as Dr. Wells notes, will advance the schedule of the trees. “We saw budbreak on early varieties beginning around March 11 last year.”“In addition to the late frost potential, an early budbreak also means as trees wake up earlier, the window to plant trees is shrinking.”
Dr. Wells also reminds us about the potential for beetle damage in younger trees. As the season begins earlier this year so should our monitoring for ambrosia beetles in young orchards. If not monitored beetles can spread quickly through young stressed trees causing immense damage.
This crop will be an important crop to monitor as we see pecan cold storage levels falling significantly lower than in past years. As demand for pecans continues to grow, increased production will be ever more important to keep end users with a steady supply chain.