Pecans and truffles

Daniel B. Wheeler dwheeler at ipns.com
Sat Nov 3 02:15:25 EST 2001


I'm kind of surprised no one else has posted this yet. But along with
the introduction of fresh pecans into the marketplace, there should
also be some mention of truffles which are often found with the pecan
trees older than 10 years.

A study way back in the '30's, I believe, showed that of 25 sites with
pecan trees in New Mexico, all 25 had the presence of Tuber texense or
T. rufum var. nitidum, both of which synonymized in 1998 into a single
species: T. lyonii.

It is possible that pecan farmers have another crop they either don't
know anything about, or simply haven't been told anything about.

In my experience, truffles are kind of like treasure: more are stepped
on than collected. And with recent truffle prices in Europe, wouldn't
it be nice to ship a few tons back over to affect the trade deficit?

So if you know someone who has pecan trees, ask them if you can look
underneath them. Look for areas that are naturally barren of grass and
weeds. One of the possible characteristics of T. lyonii is that it may
form brules, or "burnt earth" areas. In fact, these areas are produced
by the forming trufles during the summer months, when they send
rhizomorphs (kind of like roots) upward and rob most plant life of
water and nutrients, thus killing the plants. Think of it as
naturally-occuring herbicide.

Daniel B. Wheeler
www.oregonwhitetruffles.com




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