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Palm trees in Sochi, Russia

122 posts in this topic

Hello there! It is my first post on palmtalk! I have been trying to register here for a long time and now I did it! Since I live in the city of Sochi, I can't imagine my life without palm trees. You know, it's almost impossible to figure out palm trees in Russia :) So, I'm going to show your some palm trees from Russia!

Phoenix Canariensis (pure)

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Sochi: Voroshilov SPA by Vlad Feoktistov, on Flickr

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Sochi: Hot season by Vlad Feoktistov, on Flickr

Washingtonia Filifera and Robusta

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The Palm Alley: Washingtonia Robusta [sochi, Russia] by Vlad Feoktistov, on Flickr

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Differnence (robusta vs filifera) by Vlad Feoktistov, on Flickr

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I never thought I would see palms in Russia, the Crimea was the only place I figured they would grow. Sochi must get some nice moderation from the Black Sea? What are your lowest temperatures there?

And welcome!

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The lowest temperature ever recorded in Sochi is 6.8F (-14C). There were some severe winters with 6.0F at the first half of XX century. The Black Sea is the second moderation factor after Caucasus mountains (they are at the north part of the city, so the block any cold wind).

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Vlad welcome to the forum!

Great album!

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Vladislav, you have forever changed my mental image of Russia! Welcome to the forum, what a great introductory post. :) Excellent photos.

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Vlad, welcome to a forum.

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Incredible stuff! Never would have thought it !

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Vlad--

Great pictures!

Thanks too for the geography and climate information.

Ken.

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Hi, Vlad:

Many Thanks! Had a lady friend from Sochi once!

Best Wishes,

merrill

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From Russia with Love. I never knew palms grew outdoors in Russia. Thank you for showing. Welcome to Palm Talk.

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Nice surprise Vlad!

Welcome!

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Welcome! Thanks for posting the pictures. I knew Sochi was a mild area for Russia but did not expect so many large palms trees.

Dylan

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Very beautiful! Reminds me very much of San Diego

And welcome!!!

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Welcome to palmtalk! This is a great post! Thank you for the pictures!

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Vladislav,

Welcome to PalmTalk! :) I'm glad you were able to join! And great photos! You live in a beautiful place! :)

Aloha from the Big Island of Hawaii,

Bo-Göran

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Wow! Thanks for the pics Vlad. Never would of thought date palms and Washingtonias grew in Russia...

Welcome to Palmtalk!

:) Jonathan

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Welcome to the forum of the International Palm Society! smilie.gif

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welcome to PalmTalk, Vlad. I never realized so many palms could grow in Russia. Sochi is a beautiful place.

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Vlad, a warm WELCOME from Costa Rica! Very interesting watching those palms so healthy there. Thanks for sharing your place. Do you have own some palms? What palms? In pots?

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Brahea edulis

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Sochi: Brahea edulis by Vlad Feoktistov, on Flickr

Braheas and Jubaeas are not common in street landscaping. These ones grow in Arboretum. The most common landscaping palms are Washingtonia filifera and Butias (downtown streets and parks), Phoenix canariensis (mid-sized parks) and Trachycarpus species (residental and suburban areas). There are some Sabals scattered over the city and one Livistona chinensis near my house.

Washingtonia Robusta is quite uncommon in Central district, some can be found in Adler district (15 miles to the south). It seems, that the new trend in palm planting is Robusta, but I can't be sure. It is difficult to me to differ young Washingtonias. Here is the new palm alley on the central Sochi pedestrian street - Navaginskaya (4 years old).

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Street in Russia by Vlad Feoktistov, on Flickr

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Thanks for the pictures Vlad. Like most I always picture Russia under snow, although I did know there were warmer parts. It looks like a nice place there.

dk

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Vlad, thank you for educating me...palms in Russia, who'da thunk???????? :mrlooney:

And, thank you for indirectly reminding us that the "I" in IPS stands for INTERNATIONAL. :)

Hoping you will stick around and post when you can.

Regards

Rusty

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Well Sochi is in that part of Russia you could call the Russian Riviera. And it has a mildere climate then the Crimea. Well its strange that some people have never heard of palms in Russia. There are pictures, or some film I can remember from Yalta in 1945 if I am right with Churchill, Stalin and Roosevelt. That famous Jalta conference. Well there are some Trachycarpus fortunei in front of the Livadia Palace where that Yalta conference ones was hold in February 1945.

You can see some Trachycarpus fortunei on some of those pictures. Sochi has a very mild climate thanks to the shelter it gets from the Kaukasus mountains and the Black Sea keeps that area warm during winter. Similair to The North Italian lakes and the Mediterranean Sea in Southern Europe.

So folks learn your history...

Alexander

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P.S.

Sotchi is situated at 39.43 latitude. Thats more or less the same latitude as Mallorca in Spain to give an idear. Russia is not only enless frozen taiga, well most of it is but there are some areas with a nicer climate as well downthere.

Alexander

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Sochi area climate is quite unique. Sochi is actually located between 43N and 44N latitude, which is about the same as Nice, France.

The climate is milder than that of Yalta, but very different. Yalta has a typical Mediterranean climate, Sochi has a wet subtropical climate. But one that is unlike any other that I know off. The entire Caucasus coast from the northern suburbs of Sochi down to the Georgian resort city of Batumi gets a lot of precipitation, but most of it during the coldest months. Which is the opposite of your typical subtropical monsoon situation.

Sochi get's on average 62.26 in (1,584 mm) of precipitation every year. This is more than any place in Florida, except for the panhandle. May, June and July are the driest months each averaging less than 4 inches of rain. November, December and January on the other hand are the wettest, averaging over 7 inches each. Batumi (which is a half-a-zone milder than Sochi at about 9b) gets 107 inches (2,718 mm) of rain per year, which is about twice the annual rainfall of the Miami area.

So if a palm survives in Sochi, that means that it can handle a very wet winter. Jubaeas and Braheas (armata and edulis) thrive there, for example. But unfortunately, another example is that the characteristics of the Sochi climate makes it tough for Livistonas and Rhapidophyllum to survive down there.

What makes Sochi even more unique is an extremely close proximity of the real winter cold. Sochi is the host of the 2014 Winter Olympics. So the real winter is almost literally around the block.

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There are pictures, or some film I can remember from Yalta in 1945 if I am right with Churchill, Stalin and Roosevelt. That famous Jalta conference. Well there are some Trachycarpus fortunei in front of the Livadia Palace where that Yalta conference ones was hold in February 1945.

You can see some Trachycarpus fortunei on some of those pictures

Alexander, I previously posted pictures of Yalta in the Travel Logs section http://www.palmtalk.org/forum/index.php?showtopic=29766

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Tallest Phoenix Canariensis and Hybrids

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Super Huge Phoenix Canariensis in Sochi, Russia. That's the MIRACLE by Vlad Feoktistov, on Flickr

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Phoenix Canariensis in Russia, Sochi! by Vlad Feoktistov, on Flickr

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Russian Riviera Sochi,Russia. That's the MIRACLE by Vlad Feoktistov, on Flickr

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Phoenix Canariensis Near Theatre by Vlad Feoktistov, on Flickr

This stone "basements" were made to prevent old tall palms from falling during storm wind. Palm roots are in the ground.

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Hi

My father was born in Russia. Nice country.

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Very nice oveviews of your town, Vlad.

I have been interested in Sochi's climate for a while because I live at the same latitude on the Atlantic side of France and because the climate is not very different from yours, regarding temps and rain.

It's very surprising to see how many different healthy palms can grow there.

What happened when they had to face the historical low of -13°C/8°F? (May be a very long time ago, and may be at the airport that is not the milder spot?)

What is your minimum low each winter, each decade?

Are palm trees limited to the seaside, or do they extend deeper inland (except T.fortunei of course).

Here there are some palms but nobody in the past has been willing to promote and plant them at the same scale as Russia did.

For exemple there are very few 100 years old Jubaea, a perfectly hardy palm.

Washingtonia robusta are not the best palms, they can be easily damaged by frost, but they are cheap and fast. Here too for those reasons it is often the main choice for public areas, same for Phoenix canariensis, also popular in private yards. It is not a good choice at all in the colder areas around here.

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Very nice oveviews of your town, Vlad.

I have been interested in Sochi's climate for a while because I live at the same latitude on the Atlantic side of France and because the climate is not very different from yours, regarding temps and rain.

It's very surprising to see how many different healthy palms can grow there.

What happened when they had to face the historical low of -13°C/8°F? (May be a very long time ago, and may be at the airport that is not the milder spot?)

What is your minimum low each winter, each decade?

Are palm trees limited to the seaside, or do they extend deeper inland (except T.fortunei of course).

Here there are some palms but nobody in the past has been willing to promote and plant them at the same scale as Russia did.

For exemple there are very few 100 years old Jubaea, a perfectly hardy palm.

Washingtonia robusta are not the best palms, they can be easily damaged by frost, but they are cheap and fast. Here too for those reasons it is often the main choice for public areas, same for Phoenix canariensis, also popular in private yards. It is not a good choice at all in the colder areas around here.

1) There is a wonderful book somewhere in the Internet called "Palm trees and their cultivation in the USSR". According to this book the 1949/50 winter (-12.4°C) caused:

Phoenix Canariensis (almost all) with protection - dead

Phoenix Sylvestris with protection - serious leaf damage, one palm tree dead

Trachycarpus Fortunei with no protection - no damage

Chamaerops humilis (almost all) - leaf damage, most recovered

Sabal palmetto with protection - minor leaf damage

Washngtonia filifera with protection - partrial leaf lost, most recovered; without protection - half of leaves lost

Washingtonia robusta - serious leaf damage

Butia capitata - dead without protection, serious leaf damage with protection

Jubaea with protection - leaf damage, most recovered

Erythea with protection - serious leaf damage

Since that winter, there where some less severve ones. After them, it seems, some Phoenix hybrids were introduced. This is the reason, why tall pure P.C. are uncommon. Moreover, protection technics were modified. Young (till 5 years, I think) Phoenix and Washingtonias are sheltered with ligh sacking each year.

2) -3.0°C each winter for one or two nights with +5.0°C at the nex day is normal. According my climate research -7.0°C is possible each decade, with only one -8.9°C night in 25 years.

3) Tourist zone with major palm parks streches along seaside. In fact, due to hilly landscape 75% of Sochi urban zone is limited within 2km from the shore. Here you can find Phoenix and Washingtinia.

I agree with you, that Jubaea is perfect for our climate conditions. I don't understand, why they are so rare here. They are way better then Butias for me. Every winter local authorities have to be ready to spend money for protection if disaster occurs. But they still prefer Phoenix and Washingtonia. I don't know why...

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Thank you for your answer including so interesting facts and figures.

I guess that the very cold temperatures occur briefly, that's why palms trees can recover, even if they show fried palms , the frost being not long enough to kill the meristems.

The description of the damages to different palm trees with the chances to recover is usefull.

Here I recorded the same minimum low in 25 years, -8°/-9°C, with -5° every winter, and I try to grow around 50 different species.

I think there are a lot of others exotics in Sochi like Cycads, Eucalyptus, Citrus, ...

Edited by Michel64
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