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Mother Nature

The harshness of making a living growing pecans in Central Texas is known by many a farmer. Mother Nature can be kind and generous in providing bountiful crops. She can also be quite unpredictable by lashing out with unfavorable weather conditions and placing various diseases and pests in the path of a pecan grower. Whether it is too much water in the spring, or not enough water in the summer, the pecan crop can be placed at risk. There are also the many possible scourges including, but not limited to, the pecan nut case-bearer that feed inside small nutlets to destroy the pecans, walnut caterpillars that feed together in large numbers on pecan leaves and can defoliate entire trees, and pecan scab that is caused by a fungus which will cause the nuts to drop prematurely or result in poorly filled out pecans. As if these hazards are not enough to deal with, Mother Nature also gives pecan farmers pests such as crows, squirrels, raccoons, whitetail deer, and axis deer. This just goes to underscore that Everyone and Everything loves pecans!

A group of walnut caterpillars as they molt. Unchecked, they can totally devastate the foliage of the pecan tree.

Unfortunately, there is no sure-fire way of predicting what the farming hazards and conditions will be each year. This makes for an interesting business proposition which requires constant monitoring and management. Despite growing up around pecans, I have to admit that I have learned many new things in this adventure called “Buddy’s Pecans,” and I have quickly realized that I will continue to learn something new each day. Through my blogs, I hope you too will learn more about the amazing and mercurial Mother Nature.

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