Randy S. Sanderlin, Coolman, Denise | 8/25/2005 2:08:19 AM
SHREVEPORT – Making pecans profitable is the idea behind a new orchard being planted at the LSU AgCenter’s Pecan Research and Extension Station near Shreveport. The new orchard is just one topic that will be discussed during the station’s field day Sept. 22.
Dr. Randy Sanderlin, a researcher at the station, said the orchard is a research demonstration project and that it will be grown using LSU AgCenter recommendations.
"This will help us understand more of what producers face when growing their own pecan orchard," Sanderlin said. "We’re going to keep up with all costs associated with growing an orchard so that we can better help producers grow a more profitable crop."
Sanderlin said the orchard will be grown as a commercial orchard with trees from six pecan cultivars – Desirable, Elliott, Caddo, Oconee, Nacono and Pawnee. The orchard will be irrigated using a drip irrigation method.
"These are some of the currently recommended cultivars for a commercial pecan orchard in Louisiana.," Sanderlin said. "We’re going to keep up with costs of fertilizers, herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, irrigation and so on so that we will be more in tune with what producers have to spend to grow an orchard. This will give us a more practical analysis of LSU AgCenter recommendations."
The new 8-acre orchard was planted in early March (2005), and the trees are on 40-foot diagonal rows. Costs for such items as trees, irrigation supplies and other items involved in getting the orchard started total about $4,500 so far.
The public can learn more about this and other studies being conducted at the LSU AgCenter’s Pecan Research and Extension Station during the its annual field day, which will begin at 9 a.m. Sept. 22. The station is located on La. Highway 1 south of Shreveport.
For more information, call Sanderlin at (318) 797-8034 ext. 2311.
The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture