What Nutrients do Pecan Trees Need?
Like all plants, pecan trees need a range of essential nutrients to stay healthy and produce abundant crops. One of these nutrients is zinc, which plays a role in several important plant processes. For example, zinc is involved in the development of new leaves and the production of chlorophyll. It is also necessary for the proper functioning of enzymes, which are responsible for many biochemical reactions.
A zinc deficiency can cause a number of problems, including stunted growth, yellowing leaves, and reduced fruit production. While zinc is available in most soils, it can be quickly depleted by heavy rains or irrigation. As a result, pecan growers may need to supplement their trees with zinc fertilizers to ensure a healthy crop.
NPK Ratio for a Pecan Tree Fertilizer
If you’re thinking about planting a pecan tree, or if you already have one, you’ll need to know the right NPK ratio for the fertilizer. Pecan trees require different fertilizers depending on their age. For a young tree, the best ratio is 10-10-10. This will give it the perfect mix of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium to help it grow strong and healthy. For a mature tree, the best ratio is 20-20-20. Older trees often need a little bigger nutrient boost.
How to Choose the Best Fertilizer for Pecan Trees
- Choose a pecan tree fertilizer that is high in nitrogen. They need plenty of nitrogen to produce healthy leaves and promote strong growth.
- Avoid fertilizers with too much phosphate. While phosphate is necessary for pecan trees, too much can prevent the tree from acquiring other nutrients.
- Select a fertilizer that also contains essential micronutrients. Pecan trees need small amounts of iron, zinc, and manganese to stay healthy. These elements can usually be found in most all-purpose fertilizers.
How to Supplement a Pecan Tree With Zinc
If your pecan tree is not getting enough zinc, you can supplement it with zinc sulfate. Zinc sulfate can be applied as a foliar spray, or it can be added to the soil around the tree. However, the quickest method is to apply granulated zinc sulfate beneath the tree’s branches. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when applying zinc sulfate. Aside from that, you can also ensure that your pecan tree fertilizer comes with micronutrients.
Homemade Organic Pecan Tree Fertilizer
If you’d rather make your own pecan tree fertilizer, compost is a great option. Compost is rich in nutrients and helps improve soil structure, making it ideal for trees. To make your own compost, simply layer organic material such as leaves, grass clippings, and fruit and vegetable scraps in a bin or pit. It’s important to give it time to break down bacteria (at least a few months). Over time, these materials will break down and release their nutrients into the soil. You can then use this compost to fertilize your pecan trees.