During yesterday's this beautiful spring weather, I took a short walk around my pecan plantings and noticed that some trees were starting to push open new buds. The photo at right was taken yesterday and shows the emerging buds of a Faith pecan tree. The inner scales have split open and dropped to the ground to reveal a large, green vegetative bud surrounded by smaller buds containing catkins.
During my walk-about, I also found a Jayhawk tree with bright green buds (photo at left). Seeing green buds this early in April makes me a little nervous. I've already loss a large part of my peach crop and part of my pear crop to late-spring freezes last month and we are not statistically past the danger of additional cold weather. Pecan buds at this of development can withstand temperatures of 26 degrees F (-3 C) and thankfully the 10 day forecast looks like we'll stay above the freezing mark.
Other pecan cultivars were just starting to split open their inner scales. Kanza buds look like they are wearing little helmets as the inner bud scale pops free from the expanding bud beneath (photo at right). Gardner trees looked to be at the same bud stage as Kanza.
Greenriver buds have swollen but the inner bud scale was still covering the entire bud (photo at left). Hark and Lakota buds appeared much like Greenriver, still fully covered by the inner scale.