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Planting Pecan Trees

 
Posts: 231
Location: S.E. Michigan - Zone 6a
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I have 10 acres in S.E. Michigan and want to develop this land with permaculture ideas.  I'm starting with (among other things) 3 pecan trees.  The property is about 1300' east-west and 350' north-south.  My current plan is to plant the pecan trees near the north edge of the property.  Then in the future add under story plantings.  Does anything jump out at anyone with this plan?  Right now the place I'm planting is just lawn, anyone have planting instructions for me other than dig a hole and stick the tree in?  This will be near the high point of the property so I will not get a lot of extra water, but the area is well watered.  There is a creek flowing through the property about 150' away from where I plan on planting the trees.
 
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Three trees? I think you should think bigger; but I know they use "eleagnous umbelata" under walnut trees as nitrogen fixer.
 
Jerry Ward
Posts: 231
Location: S.E. Michigan - Zone 6a
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yeah, I have much bigger plans, but I am building a house this year on this property so both time and money are tight.
 
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I, too, would like to plant one or three pecan trees. I'm in western Wisconsin, zone 4, but I have seen enough listings for northern hardy pecans to make me want to try. (No good site for a black walnut and plenty of oaks in the hills.) I'm looking at MillerNurseries.com and OikosTreeCrops.com, and might plant one from each source. One concern -- one intended pecan site is expected to replace the overstory and shade of a mature but fungally-stricken silver maple that is sure to succumb within the next few years. Central limbs have already snapped off the south and west sides of the tree nearest to the pecan site, and prevailing winds would protect it from the rest. I'm not concerned about the pecans being damaged by debris; this is the right spot here. But should I worry about the fungus? I hope this semi-sheltered, sun-trap-like, south-facing slope would be enough to support a pecan or two. I need a bit more shade for my woodland project.
 
Jerry Ward
Posts: 231
Location: S.E. Michigan - Zone 6a
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I'm getting 3 of the northern hardy pecans from Miller Nurseries, and two Paw-Paws.  I will be planting the pecans in what is now lawn, there are mature trees within 50'-100' to the south and west so the wind will at least be broken.
 
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I've bought a property that has a good many pecan trees. One thing that they need a good bit of is zinc. Haven't found a natural source for that yet. Needing to keep the floor underneath the pecans for when they drop needs to be kept in mind if you are wanting to harvest them. I may plant winter pea or white clover as a cover crop for nitrogen and cut back low before the pecans start to fall.
 
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I've heard that you don't want grass growing at the base of pecan trees because it robs the nitrogen and water from the tree. Mulch heavily.
 
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How do you harvest pecans underneath a tree that has understory plants in its nut dropping zone?
 
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