Are your pecans getting the nutrients they need for optimal growth?
The first step in any nutrient management plan should be a soil sample. For pecan orchards, soil samples are the best way to monitor soil pH and lime requirement, as well as to determine what nutrients need to be added to the soil. Leaf samples are another tool that can aid in correcting nutrient deficiencies. The University of Georgia Extension recommends taking leaf samples between July 7 and August 7, because this is the period that nutrient concentrations in the leaves are most stable. Any deficiencies can be corrected at this time.
Three macronutrients needed by pecans (nitrogen, potassium, and magnesium) are commonly deficient in Georgia soils. 1 Three of the seven micronutrients (zinc, boron, and iron) needed by pecans are also commonly deficient. Pay close attention to these macro and micro nutrients when reviewing your soil and leaf samples.
Full spectrum pecan nutrition
The following is general information on pecan fertilization and should be used in conjunction with soil sample results, yield goals, and agronomist recommendations.
- As with most other plants, nitrogen is the most common limiting nutrient. To produce a consistent, high-quality supply of pecans, nitrogen should be applied annually.
- Maintain a proper balance of nitrogen and potassium (a 2:1 ratio for most varieties) to prevent leaf scorch).
- Magnesium deficiency can occur in soils with high potassium levels. Aim to maintain soil pH levels between 6.0-6.3 to prevent magnesium deficiency.
- Zinc is an important micronutrient for pecan flowering, fruit size, leaf expansion, and nut yield. Even if you have adequate zinc levels in your soil, soil pH, nitrogen, and phosphorous application can affect the availability of zinc in the soil.
- Soil boron levels may be affected by soil texture. Sandy soils have a higher potential of leaching due to rainfall and irrigation.
- Iron is essential for photosynthesis. A lack of iron in the soil is usually caused by over-liming, cold and wet spring weather, or high levels of zinc, phosphorus, and manganese.
The Rainbow Plant Food advantage
Rainbow Plant Food is a homogeneous, granular fertilizer that provides balanced nutrition across your pecan orchards. Each granule contains precise amounts of each nutrient to take the guesswork out of managing your micro and macro nutrient levels.
Browse our Rainbow, Super Rainbow, and Rainbow International fertilizer grades to find the right option for your orchard or get in touch with your local rep. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter for more information about Rainbow Plant Food.