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Pecan Varieties

Pecans do not come true from seed, and every native or seedling pecan tree is distinctly different from the seed parent. Over the years, more than 1,000 pecan seedlings have been named and grafted as varieties. Only a very few of these have become established as outstanding varieties.

Over the years, varieties have been identified which performed well in various areas of Texas. These are listed below with the most recommended varieties listed first.

Burkett is an old variety that is common across Texas, but is recommended only as a yard tree in west Texas. Do not plant Burkett in the rest of Texas because of disease and insect problems. Nuts/lb - 42; percent kernel - 59.

Caddo is an excellent yard tree in all of Texas because of strong limbs, scab resistance, early ripening and attractive foliage. Its nuts are very small but have high-quality kernels. The trees begin to bear in 5 to 6 years and tend to bear well annually. Nuts/lb - 63; percent kernel - 57.

Cape Fear is a good yard tree for east and south Texas because of its strong, easy-to-train limbs, high yield and scab resistance. The trees begin to bear in 5 to 7 years; however, the kernels are only fair quality and the foliage is highly susceptible to fungal leaf scorch. Nuts/lb - 47; percent kernel - 54.

Cheyenne is a very productive, smaller tree which begins to bear a high quality nut in only 5 to 7 years. Cheyenne is particularly susceptible to aphids. It can be grown in all but the northern panhandle area of Texas. Nuts/lb - 51; percent kernel - 57.

Choctaw is a good yard tree because of its beautiful foliage, scab resistance and high yields of large, high-quality pecans. Unfortunately, Choctaw requires the very best soil and management; otherwise, it will fail. Nuts/lb - 38; percent kernel - 59.

Desirable is an outstanding variety for the humid areas of east and south Texas and also produces well in central Texas. The tree grows fast but requires at least 8 to 10 years to bear 15 pounds of pecans. It has weak "V" limb angles which require training and its foliage is light green rather than a more attractive dark color. Scab resistance is moderate and can be controlled with fungicide sprays. Desirable is not an exceptionally heavy bearer, but as an older tree it is the most regular producer of crops of high quality pecans. Nuts/lb - 39; percent kernel - 54.

Forkert is an old Mississippi variety that is little known, but rapidly gaining popularity in Texas because of its excellent nut quality. Nuts/lb - 42; percent kernel - 63.

Houma is a 1989 release that has good potential for east Texas and the Gulf Coast. It has excellent disease resistance and medium size, high-quality nuts with nearly 55 percent kernel. It is suggested for trial only.

Kiowa is a newer variety that has good limb structure, attractive foliage and large nuts. It begins to bear at about 6 years of age and bears good crops, but nut quality has been inconsistent. Nuts/lb 39; percent kernel - 57.

Maramec is a fair-quality, large pecan which has produced strong trees and consistent production in Oklahoma. It is recommended as a yard tree for north Texas. Nuts/lb - 42; percent kernels - 58.

Mohawk is a fair yard tree for north Texas. It matures early - ahead of fall frosts - and has strong limb structure and beautiful foliage. It bears heavily, but like other varieties with very large nuts, the nuts are poorly filled as the tree ages. Nuts/lb - 33; percent kernel -59.

Oconee is a 1989 USDA release that has good potential for east Texas and the Gulf Coast. It has very good disease resistance and large nuts of about 56 percent kernel. It is suggested for trial only.

Pawnee is a new, extremely early-ripening variety recommended especially for the Texas Panhandle. It is a medium-size pecan with good kernel quality. Additional years of evaluation are needed before recommending it for all of Texas. It appears to have a natural resistance to aphids, which are a leading pecan pest. Nuts/lb - 50; percent kernel - 58.

Shoshoni is an early ripening variety for the Panhandle and north Texas. The tree is very productive and begins to bear in only 5 to 6 years. It begins alternate bearing at an early age, which limits its usefulness as a yard tree except in the colder north where later maturing varieties are vulnerable to fall freeze injury before the nuts mature. Nuts/lb - 43; percent kernel - 54.

Sioux is an outstanding yard tree because of its strong, easy-to-train limb structure and extremely high-quality, small nut. It has moderate scab susceptibility and will require fungicide sprays during periods of high humidity. Nuts/lb - 62; percent kernel - 59.

Tejas is a good yard tree for west Texas. The tree is extremely vigorous and large, producing small leaves and good-quality pecans. It is highly susceptible to scab disease and should be grown only in the drier areas of the state. Nuts/lb - 59; percent kernel - 53.

Western can grow and bear nuts with less management than any other variety in the far west. The tree is strong, easy to train and productive, coming into production in 7 to 8 years. Western is highly susceptible to scab disease and should be grown only in west Texas. Nuts/lb -52; percent kernel - 59.

Wichita is the most productive pecan grown in Texas and is ideally adapted to central and west Texas. Although it has serious scab problems in the humid areas and freeze problems in the far north, the tree is very vigorous, productive and begins to bear in only 5 to 7 years. Wichita develops "V" limb angles that split and require careful training. It tends to be a poor-bearing, unattractive tree if it is not well managed.


Texas Pecan Board

PO Box 5976
Bryan, TX 77805-5976


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