Omission of Lime Reduces Mouse-ear Symptoms in Container-grown Pecan Trees

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  • 1 Department of Horticulture and Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station Auburn University, AL 36849

Container-grown pecan [Carya illinoensis (Wangenh.) C. Koch] trees with “mouse-ear” symptoms, characterized by small, rounded, cupped, and slightly wrinkled leaflets, were repotted into two types of media amended with three rates of dolomitic limestone (0, 5.4, or 10.7 kg·m-3). In both media [4 milled pine bark: 1 sand; 1 soil: 1 peat: 1 perlite (by volume)], mouse-ear symptoms in the season following repotting were dramatically reduced at the lower lime application rates. Medium Fe, Ca, Cu, and Mn and foliar Ca, Mg, Mn, Zn, and B were affected by lime rate 10 months after repotting in one or both media. Medium pH increased quadratically as lime rate increased. Greatest plant recovery occurred when no lime was added, resulting in a pH of 3.9 in the bark-sand medium and 4.2 in the soil-peat-perlite medium.

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