Monday, July 29, 2013

Nut development 29 July 2013: Focus on early maturing cultivars

   Between rain showers this morning, I collected some more nut samples to check on the progress of nut development. The first three cultivars I checked were the same three I looked at last week; Osage, Kanza, and Maramec. I had hoped that the 6 inches of rain we've received over the past week would stimulate faster nut development but it looks like things are progressing at their normal pace. We are still at least two weeks behind normal. By the end of July, Osage is usually in full water stage but today, the cotyledon is only half way grown.
     After cutting Osage, Kanza, and Maramec, I decided to see how some of our earliest ripening cultivars were progressing this year. Warren 346 is the earliest ripening cultivar we have growing at the research station. Henning, Lucas and Goosepond all originated as seedlings in short season climates. Even these super-early-ripening cultivars have yet to achieve full water stage. Warren 346 and Henning are at 3/4 water, while Lucas and Goosepond have developed to 1/2 water.
    After cutting nuts for a couple of weeks, I've come to the conclusion that when ever weather conditions create a late spring, the entire nut development calender gets pushed back. Let just hope most of our nuts split shuck before this Fall's first hard freeze.