How to Fertilize Pecan Trees in Alabama


According to Dr. William Goff, Extension horticulturist at the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, there are many reasons why pecan trees don’t produce in Alabama. In addition to poor variety, soil, incorrect watering, poor pollination, overcrowding and diseases, inadequate fertilizing can result in poor pecan production. Due to a lack of nutrients, including nitrogen and zinc in Alabama soil, regular fertilizing is necessary to produce healthy and thriving Pecan trees in the state.

Things You'll Need

  • Fertilizer sprayer
  • 13-13-13 fertilizer
  • Ammonium nitrate
  • Zinc sulfate
  • Dolomitic lime
  • Tape measure
  • Watering hose
  • Apply fertilizer to your large pecan trees in March.

  • Apply the following fertilizing formula to large trees: 1 pound of 13-13-13 fertilizer per tree every year for up to 25 years. Additionally, add 1 pound of ammonium nitrate and 1/10 pound of zinc sulfate per tree every year for up to 20 years. Finally, add 5 pounds of dolomitic lime per tree every year for up to 20 years. If the tree is young, add just half of the ammonium nitrate in April and the other half in June for the first three to five years.

  • Use a fertilizer sprayer to broadcast the fertilizer around the surface of the trees. Try to spray the fertilizer in a circle around the trees that is twice the branch spread of the tree. If you need to, use a measuring tape and measure from the trunk out to the last branch spread. Take note of that distance and double it. The doubled amount is the maximum distance away from the tree that you need to fertilize.

  • Water the area surrounding the tree normally. If you overwater, you may dilute the fertilizer.

Tips & Warnings

  • Contact your local agricultural center and request that someone take a sample of your soil. While these general steps can help you fertilize your Pecan trees, your soil may be particularly lacking in certain minerals. With the help of an expert, you can learn the pH of the soil surrounding the trees, and make additional corrections with fertilizer.

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