How to Grow Pecan Trees in Mississippi

Overview

Pecan trees are native to North America, specifically the Mississippi flood plain. They grow well in the area of hot summers and mild winters where water supply is usually sufficient. If you live in Mississippi, you can plant your own pecan tree in the late fall and it will flourish as long as just a few other requirements are met.

Step 1

Find a suitable spot for the pecan tree. You need two trees for nut production so keep that in mind. This type of tree matures slowly but surely, reaching heights of 80 feet or more and a trunk diameter of up to 6 feet. Plan to keep it 30 feet away from other trees. Water is important, so planting it in an area where the water table is high such as by a stream will prevent you from having to water it often. You can use the area around the tree for other crops or annual plant, just not trees.

Step 2

Dig the planting hole. Pecan trees have a taproot that extends straight down. Many times when you purchase the seedling tree, the taproot will have been circled around in the bottom of the pot. For best results, this root should be straightened to grow straight down, so dig your hole as deep as this root and a little wider than the root ball.

Step 3

Set the tree into the prepared hole and start filling the soil back in. After about 12 inches, pack the soil in with the heel of your boot, making sure there are no air pockets that could dry out the roots. Continue adding and packing until the hole is filled. Form a 6- to 8-inch ridge around the diameter of the root ball area to hold water.

Step 4

Water the tree with about 10 gallons of water. The ridge should hold the water in place, forcing it to drain down over the roots. Water the tree every few days, unless there has been plenty of rain.

Step 5

Harvesting nuts won't happen for several years. A mature pecan tree starts bearing nuts between eight and 10 years of age and will only be pollinated by another tree even though it carries both male and female parts on each tree. So plant at least two trees. The nuts are ready when the shucks begin to split open easily.

Things You'll Need

  • Pecan tree seedling (6 feet)
  • Shovel
  • Water

References

  • University of Florida IFAS Extension: The Pecan Tree
  • Washington State University Benton County Extension: Growing Pecans in the Home Garden
Keywords: pecan tree, Mississippi, nuts, growing

About this Author

Based in Maryland, Heidi Braley, currently writes for local and online media outlets. Some of Braley's articles from the last 10 years are in the "Oley Newsletter," "Connections Magazine," GardenGuides and eHow.com. Braley's college life included Penn State University and Villanova University with her passions centered in nutrition and botany.