Stanley Friesen sarima at
Thu Apr 5 02:57:20 UTC 2001

At 06:57 PM 4/2/01 -0500, you wrote:
>> If "Nueces" isn't shortened from "Rio de las Nueces", might it represent a
>> modified substratal name? ...)

>         It might.  But since pecan trees do, strangely enough, grow that far
>southwest (or almost that far:  I have seen them growing wild out in the
>middle of nowhere west of San Antonio, not too far from the Nueces) I would
>imagine that the name is related to this, especially since pecans are
>water-loving trees, which in a semi-arid environment would (probably) tend
>to grow near rivers.

As indeed they do.  Pecans are characteristic of certain watercourses in Texas.

>   On the other hand, I recall that most of what grows
>along the waterways I am thinking of(which cannot really be called rivers)
>is cypresses.

I think this may be a relatively recent change, due to overgrazing by
cattle.  But even if not, larger rivers often have vegetational zonation,
with different trees growing at different altitudes above the river
bed.  Either way, pecans are found mainly in bottomland.

>   But the Nueces is out of my zone.  (If I ever get out there
>again, I'll keep my eyes open and report back ...)  Considering that pecans
>are sometimes described as being native to "the Mississipi valley", the
>Nueces area might have been the first place Spanish explorers coming up from
>Mexico encountered them.

According to my "Trees of North America" pecans are native from about the
Mississippi westward into eastern Texas.  They exist only as cultivated
trees east of the Mississippi.

May the peace of God be with you.         sarima at

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