Transplanting Pistachio Tree - Planting Distances and Population
Planting of young pistachio seedlings in the field can take place from November (definitely after the defoliation has been completed) until the beginning of spring.
Before planting, we have to label the tree positions in the field. The pistachio trees should not be planted in less than 20 feet (6 meters) distance, especially when the soil is fertile enough. If they are planted in less than 20 feet distances, after a few years, the overcrowding and the mutual shadowing of trees will decrease the quantity and quality of production and will make harvesting and pruning more difficult. Typical distances are 20 X 20 feet (6 X 6 meters), 23 X 23 feet (7x7 meters) and 23 X 20 feet (7 X 6 meters). 20 X 20 feet distances result in 109 trees per acre, or 272 trees per hectare.
We have to place ideally 1 male tree in the center of every 7-9 female trees in small orchards. The position of the male tree must be in the center of every 7-9 female trees, so as to facilitate the dispersal of pollen through the air around the pistachio farm. However, in large pistachio orchards with 600 trees and more, farmers often place 1 male tree every 21 or more female trees.
Labeling the tree positions is followed by digging and opening the holes. The holes have typically dimensions 1,5 X 1,5 feet (45 X 45 cm) and a depth of 2 feet (60 cm). Keep in mind that the young pistachio trees are often planted with the nursery’s soil ball attached to their sensitive root system. When we put the young trees in the holes, we also place the supporting stakes. The seedlings must be planted at roughly the same depth, as they were planted in the nursery, and then we have to put plenty of surface soil to the base of the root system of seedlings. When adding the soil, we have to press it gently, until the complete filling of the pits, so as to avoid causing damage to the young and sensitive root system. Planting is followed by the watering of seedlings. Many pistachio farmers then add a small amount of manure around the seedling base. They do this in order to prevent the germination of weeds’ seeds and to maintain adequate soil moisture. These two factors can significantly affect the growth of seedlings during their first years.
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7. Pistachio Tree Planting
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