Sequential Hermaphroditism in Pecan Trees

joanie_pomseed(8)June 8, 2009

Someone told me that my pecan tree would take two years to complete its sexual cycle. I thought pecan trees usually had male and female flowers at different times of the same year. Was this person implying that the tree changes sex each year (don't juniper bushes do that?) or that it would take a year for the female flowers to develop into pecans?

I suppose what I'm asking is: (1) since all the male flowers have fallen except three shriveled catkins, should I continue to look for female flowers, or am I wasting time? and (2) should I expect an overlap between male and female phases?

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hybridsage

First Wild Pecans are monoecious(Both sex flowers occur
on same tree). The grafted varieties need two or more tree's for pollination to occur.Because these
tree's are wind pollinated.Some pecan tree's have early pollin (before females are receptive)others have late pollin(after Females are receptive) this applies to grafted varieties.Your neighborhood tree's are usually mid season. If you have a grafted tree but no neighboring
Pecans you may need to get another variety to ensure good cross-pollination. So if planting a Kiowa(Great
for pie making because of higher oil content)you will
need a Desireable to pollinate.Hope I explained that well
enough./
Art

    Bookmark   June 9, 2009 at 8:10PM
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brandon7 TN_zone(7)

I think the link I'm providing below will explain it pretty well. See the 'Pollination' section near the middle of the page.

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Art,
Grafted varieties are no different than non-grafted varieties in this aspect. All pecans are dichogamous to some degree. Wild trees (non-cultivars/"neighborhood trees") will also vary and aren't any more likely to be mid season pollinaters or mid season pollen recipient than any random grafted variety.

Here is a link that might be useful: See Pollination section of this link.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2009 at 12:11PM
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brandon7 TN_zone(7)

Oops, somehow my link got messed up. Here's the correct one:

Here is a link that might be useful: See Pollination section of this link.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2009 at 1:10PM
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joanie_pomseed(8)

Thanks for your help. I think I know what caused the confusion: the implication was that the tree would take two years to reproduce, and this was a reference to alternate bearing. It had a few pecans last winter (which is why I was sure of cross-pollination--that, and the long catkins on other neighborhood trees :) but I don't know if that means it was an "off" year or the tree was just too young.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2009 at 8:19PM
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