Do Pecan Trees Produce Nuts Every Year?
We frequently are asked about the production cycle of pecan trees. Many people are under the impression that pecan trees only produce pecans every other year. This production whereby the trees produce nuts every other year is referred to as "Alternate Bearing". Both pecans and pistachios suffer from this phenomena.
At Rio Grande Organics. we implement a number of cultivation practices that reduce alternate bearing. First and foremost, we carefully manage the size of the crop load on our trees. Every July, we go out and shake about half of the small, immature nuts off of our trees. This process is called 'mechanical thinning'. By reducing the nut load on each tree, we prevent the trees from setting and filling out too big of a crop. Large, heavy crops tend to sap the trees energy and keep it from coming back with a normal crop the following year.