En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - May 30, 2009

From: Jefferson county, AL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Propagation
Title: Will sprouts under pecan trees become producing trees in Jefferson Co., AL?
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Do pecan trees that sprout up underneath existing pecans trees ever amount to anything such as producing and bearing pecans?

ANSWER:

Apparently so, because from this article, The Pecan Tree, by P. C. Andersen and T. E. Crocker, from University of Florida IFAS Extension we learned that they were harvested and eaten by Native Americans for many years before Europeans came to North America. However, you would have to be very patient, as Carya illinoinensis (pecan) rarely fruits before it is 20 or so years old, and much older trees are the best producers. And then, of course, you'd have young trees beneath the parent tree competing for space and nutrition. And since members of the Hickory family are capable of producing allelopathic substances and discourage competition beneath them, the parent tree might very well be committing nuticide on the babies below. 

If you were thinking of doing this in your own garden, you need to be aware that pecan tree propagation now is almost exclusively done through grafting procedures. Plants that have been grafted will not breed true through the seeds they produce. In our experience, squirrels would get pecans from pecan trees down the street, industriously hide them in our flower garden, and promptly forget where they put them. We just yanked them out when they appeared because we knew they would not be the same kind of pecan that was growing elsewhere. Our property, at that time, was on what had once been a pecan tree nursery, and the trees lining the street were all the products of grafting. 


Carya illinoinensis

Carya illinoinensis

Carya illinoinensis

Carya illinoinensis

 

 


 

More Propagation Questions

Baby mountain laurels are ready to move, in Lockhart Texas
October 19, 2011 - I want to harvest the baby mountain laurel plants which are growing under a large bush. What height would be best for the young plants survival? Please recommend a soil mixture for the pots.
view the full question and answer

Timing for planting wildflower seeds in the Pacific Northwest
November 27, 2009 - Do you think it is better to sow wildflower seeds in the Pacific NW in the Fall/early Winter or Spring?
view the full question and answer

Pollinating moth of Arkansas Yucca from Arlington TX
May 15, 2012 - What is the pollinating moth of the Arkansas yucca. I have Desert willows which is the larval host for white-winged moth, but the yuccas are still not seeding. What other larval hosts plants can I p...
view the full question and answer

Grafting to a cherry laurel for edible fruit in Austin
July 01, 2010 - I was the one who asked earlier about grafting to a Cherry Laurel. I will happily graft a local plum on it, say a Mexican Plum or American Plum or one of the naturalized peaches (a friend has an India...
view the full question and answer

Transplanting native yaupon into yard in Lowake TX
June 08, 2010 - I have lots of wild yaupon in my pasture,can I transplant it to the yard?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center