How are pecans grown?
Pecans grow on big large trees, normally above 20 metres high. Those trees produce separate male and female flowers on the same tree. Pollination takes place in spring with the influence of wind. After the pollination, female flowers will turn into pecans and progressively grow until autumn when they are harvested.
Pecan trees are harvested by shaking the large branches of the trees mechanically. Pecans fall on the ground where they are swept and picked up by a mechanical harvester.
A particularity of pecan production is the alternate bearing. Crops alternate year-on-year: one crop year yielding large quantities of nuts, and one crop year with low quantities. This phenomenon can affect pricing and availability. For farmers, it is essential to pick the right varieties and carefully manage the orchard to reduce the effect of alternate bearing.