Projected Walnut Yields

The progression of a walnut orchard in optimal conditions

The Process

The walnut tree is slow species to reach its maximum production, but with the climate, irrigation, management, and materials in optimal conditions, 2-3 years can be saved. See how to achieve a profitable orchard:

Planting to Year 1:

There are two goals to be achieved:

  1. Avoid plant deaths.
  2. The trunk should develop to about 6 ft. (2 m.) in length.

Years 1 to 3:

In these years plant structure is prioritized, training it to branch out laterally without sacrificing longitudinal growth.

  • Yields of 330-550 lbs. per acre plot
  • Yields of 300-500 kg. per hectare plot

Years 3 to 6:

In these years there is a crosslinking of increases in yields and structural increments in the plants.

  • Yields of around 1320 lbs. per acre plot.
  • Yields of around 1200 kg. per hectare plot.

After the 6th or 7th Year:

The plants should have sufficient structures of secondary branches, feature tertiary branches lengthwise throughout, and reach 16-20 ft. (5-6 m.) in height.

Mature plants should achieve yields of around 33 lbs. (15 kg.) per plant as a base, which translates to:

  • Yields of 4740-5512 lbs. per acre plot.
  • Yields of 4300-5000 kg. per hectare plot.
This is the way to a profitable orchard. Although this timeline could be considered conservative with respect to the yields that are projected, it is important to note that yields in any particular year are dependent on the weather and a number of other factors.

Projections

There are three yield scenarios presented in the following projections.

Optimistic Scenario

This is a projection made by the University of California Davis Agricultural Issues Center and represents optimal yields using the industry's most modern techniques and practices. Although this projection is normally used by California-based growers, the walnut industry in Mendoza closely monitors new techniques and practices used by our California counterparts.

Neutral Scenario

This is a scenario for a new walnut plantation in Mendoza, Argentina made by Leandro Moreno, the agronomist that supervises our orchard. It represents his estimate of the yields that should be obtained according to the local techniques and practices. No losses due to severe weather events such as frost or hail are contemplated in this scenario.

Pessimistic Scenario

This scenario takes into account two extreme climate events: (1) a once in hundred years “winter kill” frost event in the first year of the plantation, resulting in a 70% loss of trees and (2) a severe hailstorm and deadly autumn frost in the 4th year which necessitates the removal of the Chandler scion in 30% of the trees. The damaged scions are removed from the rootstock and field grafts are performed on the 4-year old rootstocks.

Imperial Units
Metric Units

The orchard is laid out in rectangular blocks of 9.998 acres, each surrounded by a local access road. These blocks are subdivided into eight “acre plots”. When we refer to “acre plots”, we are referring to standard plots that measure 1.249 acres (54,438 sq. ft.) or irregular-shaped plots that differ in size, but contain 143 walnut trees (±2 trees) planted in 5 m. x 7 m. rows (16.9 ft x 22.96 ft).

Projected Annual Yields (Pounds Per Acre Plot)
Year 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10+
Large Trees Optimistic Scenario 441 744 1488 2976 6173 6173 6173 6173
Small Tree Neutral Scenario 441 661 1323 2756 4740 5512 5512 5512
Baby Tree Pessimistic Scenario 1 11 55 220 1102 3307 5512
Projected Annual Yields (Lbs. / Acre Plot)
Year Optimistic Neutral Pessimistic
3 441 441
4 744 661 1
5 1488 1323 11
6 2976 2756 55
7 6173 4740 220
8 6173 5512 1102
9 6173 5512 3307
10+ 6173 5512 5512

Our analysis includes predictions, estimates or other information that should be considered forward-looking. While these forward-looking statements represent our current judgment on what the future holds, they are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which reflect our opinions only as of the date of this presentation. Please keep in mind that we are not obligating ourselves to revise or publicly release the results of any revision to these forward-looking statements in light of new information or future events. We have attempted to present some risk factors relating to our business that may affect our predictions. You should also review our website at ChandlerOrchards.com/risks/ for a more complete discussion of these and other risks.