March 23, 2015 Central Texas Pecan Field Day Set For April 18
If you have one pecan tree in the backyard or 1,000 trees, you will benefit by attending the Central Texas Pecan Field Day on Saturday, April 18 at the Schwegmann Orchard located at 3530 N. I-35 in Georgetown. The all-day event begins with registration at 8:30 a.m. and includes speakers, lunch, a grafting workshop and vendors. Deadline to pre-register is 5 p.m. on April 16 and the fee is $20.
The first speaker will be Monte Nesbitt. He is an Extension Program Specialist with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Horticulture with 25 years of professional experience. Nesbitt has been with Extension since 2009 with responsibilities to develop and deliver educational programming throughout the state of Texas on pecans, temperate fruits and citrus. He also conducts research on fruits and nuts in the areas of water management, propagation, freeze protection and variety performance and will address orchard management issues including varieties, water quality, irrigation and fertilization. He will review the current pecan research on irrigation, varieties and tree management.
Next up will be Bill Ree. He directs the statewide pecan IPM program focusing on development and delivery of pecan IPM information to help pecan growers manage pests in an economically effective and least environmentally disruptive manner. His work has included all important insect pests of pecans in the southern and southwestern US, insect and disease complexes, new invasive pests of pecan and changes in pecan pest status. He will cover insects and insect control.
Before lunch we will also hear comments from four local growers in a roundtable discussion covering price discovery, promotion, marketing strategies and the interest in a pecan federal marketing order. Nolan Werchen, David Schwegmann, Les Steger and Rob Stewart will complete the roundtable.
After the lunch, we have the opportunity to hear about the Schwegmann orchard and see the trees.
Then next speaker will be Dewayne McCasland, he is the manager of Goldthwaite-based Pecan Producers Inc., a cooperative of 300 growers and is one of the largest buyers and sellers of pecans in Texas and Oklahoma. He will talk about processing and marketing through a cooperative.
The final event of the field day is the grafting workshop presented by Nolin Werchan. Werchan is local pecan grower who planted their orchard in 1968 using native seedling trees. Three years later he began grafting the orchard with improved varieties. He also provided custom grafting services using skills he obtained from fellow pecan growers who mentored him.
Texas Department of Agriculture continuing education units will be provided for licensed pesticide applicators. This will include one integrated pest management CEU and one general CEU.
Pre-registration is required to ensure each participant a lunch. The $20 registration fee is due by 5 p.m. on April 16 at the Williamson County Extension office located at 3151 SE Inner Loop, Suite A, Georgetown.
For more information contact the Texas AgriLIFE Extension Service office in Williamson County at 512.943.3300.