By Clint Thompson
The pecan crop in the Southeast is a little behind in its development this year. Lenny Wells, University of Georgia Cooperative Extension pecan specialist, explains why.
“It’s because of the spring that we had. We had a cold winter. Usually when you have a cold winter you have an early bud break or it doesn’t take as much heat to bring them out of bud break and get things moving and growing. The warmer the spring is, the faster that foliage develops. The crop follows along with that,” Wells said. “But this year we had the cold winter, but we continued to stay cold during the spring. That slowed down the progression of the foliage development, which slowed down the progression of the crop.”
Georgia’s earliest variety, Pawnee, should be ready for harvest within the next couple of weeks. The rest of the pecan varieties are normally ready in October and November.
Yields are expected to decrease in Georgia this year following last season’s 147.5 million pounds. Production is only expected to be about half of that this fall, due to pecan’s alternate bearing cycle.