Friday, May 17, 2013

Pollen starting to fly

     After a week of warm weather, the pecan flowering process is quickly moving ahead. Today, I noticed the first release of pecan pollen from Osage catkins (photo at right). As catkins mature they change color from green, to yellow, and finally brown. Tap brown colored catkinswith your finger and a puff of yellow pollen will drift into the air. Osage is a protandrous cultivar is among the earliest to shed pollen.
     I looked at two other protandrous cultivars for signs of pollen shed. The catkins of Giles had fully enlarged pollen sacs that were starting to turn yellow (photo at left). No sign of pollen shed at this point. 
Major catkins looked to be at the same stage as the Giles catkins. With continued warm weather in the forecast, both Giles and major will begin pollen shed this weekend.