We would like to say thank you to Mr. Stephen Norman of Rosalie Pecans for bringing us the following update:
The 2017 TriState [Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi] Pecan conference was held in Monroe, LA. Due to a deluge of rain brought by Tropical Storm Cindy (she was NOT invited!) the orchard tour at The Company Farm in Baskin was cancelled. Despite the cancellation and the ravages of the weather, about 140 brave souls participated in the event. Thursday afternoon members met with their respective grower associations for business meetings and board meetings, and visited the eighteen exhibitor booths. Thursday evening participants relaxed at the Exhibitors Reception. Friday was full of educational programs. Janice Dees, who has moved over from the Georgia Pecan Growers Association to the U.S. Pecan Growers Council, gave an update on the busy schedule of promotional activities of that group. Dr. Dennis Ring of LSU AgCenter gave an overview of stink bug damage to pecans, and how to best deal with them. Pecan bacterial leaf scorch was the topic for Dr. Rebecca Melanson, and she addressed the issue of prevention of this disease. Jeff Standish, a PhD candidate at UGA, gave an impressive talk on fungicides for pecan scab disease. Dr. Charlie Graham talked about the history and mechanics of grafting. Rounding out the morning was Dr. George Ray McEachern of Texas pecan folklore. He outlined Current Pecan Challenges & Opportunities with his usual zeal and humor. Kicking off the afternoon session was Bill Ree, entomologist at Texas A&M, with an address on Integrated Pest Management. After that Mike Adams, president of the newly-formed American Pecan Council, introduced Byron Gossett, their Executive Director. The two of them talked about Federal Marketing Order issues and answered a lot of questions. Ted Cottrell of USDA/ARS in GA gave a very interesting review of new research on black aphids. The meeting concluded as always with the infamous Ben Littlepage and his 2017 Pecan Crop Guesstimate at 292 million pounds.