First Pecan Harvest

 

Yesterday
Ann drove down to the pecan grove
to see if the Twig Girdlers
were at work there.
These little beetles have been chewing circles
around the tiny branches
of the pecan trees around our houses
and she wanted to see if they
were in the pecan grove too.
She only saw one twig
laying on the ground
with the telltale girdling.
That was good news.
But she was in for another surprise:
the pecans are ready to be harvested.
Already the deer are busy harvesting
these beautiful Paper Shells.
And the racoons may be helping.

Too, it was good news
that the Paper Shells have no tiny holes in them:
the weevils did not make it up the trunks
and passed the sticky stuff
with which Ann and Tanner
banded the trees.

It seems early for a pecan harvest,
but who’s to say
since this is the first year the trees
our dad planted in his later years
have produced the delicious, sweet meats.
He tended this grove lovingly –
grafting, transplanting, thinning.
He visited and observed it carefully
several times a week.
He died just a little over a year ago
so this first harvest is a poignant one.
Dad was a laid-back kind of guy.
He didn’t get overly excited
about very many things.
But we see
even from afar
his face
beaming.

Dad in Pecan Grove