Pecan nut, is the fruit of pecan (Carya illinoensis), a tree of the Juglandaceae family, native to North America. The Pecan tree is large; specimens that reach 40m in height and 2m in diameter on the trunk are not rare, and some of them are more than 50m high (but there is no documented evidence of this). The leaves are ellipsoidal, 30-45cm, green and deciduous. Pecan nut trees have both male and female flowers, and pollination occurs mainly through wind. Pecan walnuts come to full maturity in autumn, more precisely in October.
The plants are particularly long-lived and live up to 300 years.
Aesthetically, Pecan nuts look like traditional Italian walnut. Being drupes, they consist of an epicarp, a mesocarp and an endocarp enveloping the seed (edible part). The epicarp and the mesocarp are fleshy (3-4mm), but less thick than the traditional walnut; the epicarp is first green and then brown. Epicarp and mesocarp, at the time of maturation, are divided into four sections as if they were the petals of a flower. The endocarp is hard, woody and brown or red (depending on the variety). The seed is less tuberculous and reddish in color compared to that of the common walnut. Pecan nut sizes are similar to traditional walnut (2.6-6cmx1.5-3cm), but the shape is tended to be more elongated.
It is part of dried fruit (botanically speaking it is the nut of a drupe), very similar to walnut. As a dried fruit, it is the richest incalories. As can be seen in the table below, with its 67% fat (and exactly 60% of so-called “good” fats because unsaturated, while only 7% is made of saturated fats, ie more dangerous), Pecan Walnut provides 750 calories per 100g of product. Pecan nuts began to be cultivated only in 1846.
One of the most famous recipes based on pecans is pecan pie.
It adapts to different pedoclimatic environments, provided they are hot, due to the high length of the vegetative period. It is deciduous and resists well at low winter temperatures (up to -10 ° C).
Pollinators: Cape Fear – Cheyenne
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