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Average nut quality of test trees.

# Nuts / lb. % Kernel Kernel quality breakdown Specific gravity
   % Fancy % Standard % Amber   
50 53% 6% 38% 9% .64


Mahan originated in Kosclusko, Attala County, Miss., from a seed planted by J.M. Chestnutt in about 1910. The parentage is unknown but it is suggested that 'Mahan' is possibly a self of 'Schley'. It has also been known as Chestnut, Florida Giant, Georgia Giant, Masterpiece, Mayhan and Misasissippi Giant (Sparks, 1992). 'Mahan' has been used extensively in breeding and eight cultivars with 'Mahan' parentage have been released: 'Choctaw', 'Kiowa', 'Mohawk', 'Pawnee', 'Tejas', 'Wichita', 'Harper' and 'Mahan-Stuart'. In addition, one open-pollinated seedling of 'Mahan', 'Maramec', has been released.


*Note: This is an older cultivar planted in the Old Variety Test at the Tifton Campus. Trees were planted decades ago when care was very different than it is now, and trees received much less care, so production data will reflect this fact. Trees began receiving insecticides in 1962, fungicides in 1970, nitrogen in 1962, and drip irrigation in 1975. The data for this cultivar was collected by several individuals, but the bulk of the data and the comments are from my predecessor Dr. Ray Worley. This information was originally published here: Worley and Mullinix, 1997.

'Mahan' has one of the largest nuts. Its large nut size and thin shell give it a surprisingly high percent kernel (53%). Kernels seldom reach the end of the nut, making it one of the lowest in percent fill and specific gravity. Nut thinning might help the fill problem, but yield has been low. 'Mahan' is still sold by nurseries primarily because people request it for its large size. You might get a few good years from a young tree, but soon the nuts will no longer fill and quality will often be inedible. Homeowners should opt instead for a medium to small sized nut which has a much better chance of producing a nice kernel. Try 'Elliot' instead for its oily kernel and excellent scab resistance. If you really must have a large fruited pecan, then I would recommend 'Podsednik' or 'Kernoodle' instead.

Production record of test trees beginning in year planted

'Mahan' production from the Old Variety Test. Each colored line represents the yearly production in pounds of nuts from an individual tree beginning the year planted.

Alternate Bearing Intensity* = (.74)

*Computed from mature trees using data from years after trees began receiving fertilizer and pesticide sprays.