Alternative production in pecan production means that a tree produces a relatively abundant harvest of nuts one year and a lighter one the next. It is characteristic of walnut and other hardwood forest trees. While pecan trees can produce a crop each year once they start, they produce large yields of nuts every other year. The phenomenon, called alternate bearing, means that trees produce light crops in the other years.
Nut trees require a lot of time and effort to produce nuts. A pecan tree usually takes seven to ten years before it can bear fruit. But once the process starts, you can provide a full supply of pecans for many years, even hundreds in some cases. There are numerous causes of premature pecan fall.
Some varieties such as “Desirable” come off naturally. Poor pollination causes a fall from June to July. Planting several varieties helps reduce the problem of poor pollination drop. A small insect known as the pecan box carrier is the cause of walnut shedding at three different times of the year: mid-May, July and, rarely, late August.
This drop is easy to identify because there is a small hole in the base of the nut. Water stress can also cause the nut to fall. Ideally, pecans should be watered every two weeks. Three weeks without water is the maximum.
Nutritional problems with shallow soils or poor fertilization can cause pecans to be lost all year round. The water stage in late July and early August is the most common form of walnut drop. As walnuts move from size development to grain formation, the nut sheds very easily. Any stress received by the tree at this stage can cause a significant fruit drop.
Some trees can lose up to half of their harvest if they are not properly managed during the water stage. I suppose that even though you've been watering your lawn during hot, dry periods, you haven't deeply watered your pecan trees. Watering the lawn is not enough to water the trees: slowly soak the tree's root system into the tree's drip line and not into the trunk. Healthy trees of any variety are better able to produce pecans on a consistent basis from year to year.
Via While pecan trees can produce a crop each year once they start, large harvests of walnuts occur every other year. Pecan shedding occurs every year around this time in certain varieties and, depending on the variety, may shed a little later. Nut drop is common in the southeast and, depending on the orchard and variety, can occur between June, July and occasionally through August, however, nut drops this late in the season may be the result of lack of water in the orchard and the tree may be shedding what could have been quality nuts. If a nut tree starts producing at an earlier age compared to other cultivars, it is considered precocious.
Established pecan trees may have started as seeds, nursery grown seedlings, transplanted seedlings, container grown trees, bare root trees, or grafted trees. The owners sold the areas with pecans planted on the land as small houses or small farms with pecans. Pecans are ready for harvest when the green shells open on the tree and drop the nuts in their shells to the ground. Seeds can also be a wild card, because they don't produce plants identical to the trees that produced them, which means there is no guarantee of the quality of the nuts that trees grown with seeds will produce.
Inadequate lime or fertilizer: Lack of lime, nitrogen fertilizer, and zinc are common limiting factors in pecan production. A soil test determines the specific fertilization needs of walnut trees, which have different fertilization needs at different stages of their growth, as well as at different times of the year. Without a soil test, the general rule of thumb for fertilizing pecan trees is one pound of 13-13-13 fertilizer per tree for each year of the tree's age, up to 25 pounds. A viable pecan seed (the walnut) is the product of cross-pollination (sexual reproduction) between two pecan trees.
After the pecans are all rounded (you may need to pick them several times), you'll want to store them in a dry place or break them early to get the meat out. Therefore, when a pecan tree “produces (or bears) fruit, it is actually producing pecans that we commonly call nuts. . .