Searching for frost hardy Archontophoenix/Bungalow Palm

66 posts in this topic

13 hours ago, Bennz said:

Personally I am not too stressed about them becoming weeds. Their ecological role is a little different from nikau, requiring more light than nikau. My belief is that if a forest was established with bangalow and nikau planted together the resulting dense shade would eventually kill out the Archontophoenix once the adults reached full maturity and died, leaving a nikau forest. I see bangalow as a potential primary coloniser for nikau, liking similar

Ben weed potential is only of the reasons as another is the possibility of them  cross pollination and changing our native palm.Can it happen?I can tell you there are nikau x hedyscepe around

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16 minutes ago, Gary said:

Ben weed potential is only of the reasons as another is the possibility of them  cross pollination and changing our native palm.Can it happen?I can tell you there are nikau x hedyscepe around

How old are these cross palms Gary? I'd love to see some. I saw some Hedyscepe on LHI that I initially thought were nikau, bangalow is nowhere near as visually similar. You'd think after 100 years this cross would have occurred by now if it was every going to happen. And if it did happen it might look good!

 

Does the HedyXnikau exhibit hybrid vigour? Any seeds available?

 

re. red new growth on bangalow, I've noticed this occurs on all the palms I imported from N NSW, but one on those from S. NSW. This might be co-incidental to the seedlots I imported or might be a general provenance characteristic difference.

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Keith says he has one on his drive that was a product from the hedyscepe that use to be  in st Marys Bay but there was some hand pollinated young plants round now and some were sold off at society auction

pitt x hedyscepe

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12 hours ago, Bennz said:

I saw some Hedyscepe on LHI that I initially thought were nikau, bangalow is nowhere near as visually similar. You'd think after 100 years this cross would have

here is local hedyscepe that looks more like nikau

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here is a nikau of which there are a small group of and suspect a hybrid of some sort-seed are sapida shape but larger and seedling leaflet is far narrower than baueri.Fallen frond measured 7m.Tallest palm in small group is very tall and expect over 20m.I have a small amount of seed in 2010 and not sure if you got any Ben.

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here is pic supplied to Toby by either me or Malcolm of the palm type in 2010

RhoSap2.jpg

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it was actually 2004 when I sent 500seed only

 

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On 2 August 2016 9:10:07 pm, Gary said:

Bangalow have been in nz more than 100yrs and many old specimens are around Parnell area.Some area forms perform differently ie weather wise like Wollongong form and gene wise like some have a new red leaf and others forms don't.There at present are no restrictions on importing or exporting seeds of these but nz phyto is very expensive..I doubt the ARC will ban them for sometime but they are still under observation on a 5yr plan then they will review again.Like Ben can tell you I have collected 100s of 1000s of these seeds over the years and they don't pose a weed threat really.as they canbe controlled.Pic is very old specimens in Alberon park.20yrs ago I use to collect seeds off these but ever then needed a 30ft ladder,This batch of them have new reddish leaf

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Yeah I understand they have been here for quite some time as have several other Palm species like pheonix etc. however the number of feral/garden escapees has increased from these same species. Whether it's climate change or another reason eg pollination vector or disperser of seeds (see morten bag fig). It's on the weed watch list for a reason, not because the council enjoy being fun police but because empirical data suggests a real or potential problem. But you might be right and there is nothing to watch out for (at least for the bangalow). 

Would be good to get your thoughts on cold hardiness? Like I've said earlier, loads of mature bangalows in Hamilton where it is routine to have -5C nights each winter. Non would be of an age that they survived through the record -9.9C night but at least a night or two close to -7C. I don't think these palms are genetically any better than others, hence I'm guessing duration of freeze + high humidity + warm daytime temps have enabled them to survive lower temperatures here without obvious effects compared to other places.

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On 2 August 2016 7:32:38 pm, Bennz said:

Hi HAS,   

 

 

Actually I did try to answer that question, but I was not clear. Batemans Bay gets to -2C,  so inland it probably gets a lot colder. Much further north in NE NSW where my in-laws live it gets very cold too. My bro-in-law is the guy who checks the temp stats for BOM at Urbenville, he's recorded -8C there. So basically right across the natural range of bangalow palms we can find cold nights in chilly spots. So no real surprise if they handle cold in NZ.

The highest elevation sites in NSW where these things grow would also have cool days, as well as some cold nights. I've seen them a good way up the Gibralter Range for example, where mean minimum in winter must be around 0C, and days can be below 10C at times. On the summit of Bar Mountain in the Border Ranges there are bangalows. My in-laws farm is about half an hours drive away, and on very cold days has been known to get highs around 12C. Considering Bar Mt. is over 1000m higher elevation it is quite possible these cold days are maxing around 6C. Certainly I've been up there at times and felt like dying form cold was quite feasible. So again habitat includes cold days.

But as you say, all these examples are short duration cold. I've seen mangos badly damaged by cold in a frost hollow in Lismore (NSW) at -6C that 6 months later looked almost untouched. I've seen mangos at my place dead at 4C.  The overall warmth of the subtropics cant be replicated in NZ. Mangos are tropical plants that can grow in the subtropics and mild warm temperate areas. I think bangalow is a true warm temperate palm that also occurs in the subtropics. For us to grow bangalows is not a stretch at all, the climates are not that dissimilar. Growing them in UK or far N of PNW is a different challenge altogether.

I don't understand why some people talk aboujt these palms not handling -2C etc. They seem much hardier than that. Although I admit there are some frost-blasted specimens in Hastings at present.

 

Yeah funny the climate differences. Hamilton, Tauranga, Gisborne and Napier all have pretty similar mean temperature figures and similar mean annual air temperature, but the experience of visiting (and presumably living) in these towns is quite different. Archontophoenix grow well in all areas, but you don't find many seedlings occurring in Napier. This suggests to me the essential summer moisture for these things to become weedy is somewhere between the mean rainfall figures for Napier and Gisborne, ie somewhere between 750-1000mm. I'm only 45kms from Napier but with the slightly higher rainfall and complete lack of frost bangalow seedlings occur here fairly regularly. I like them!

Sorry, just noticed your reply hidden there.

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19 minutes ago, HASNZ38S said:

Yeah I understand they have been here for quite some time as have several other Palm species like pheonix etc. however the number of feral/garden escapees has increased from these same species. Whether it's climate change or another reason eg pollination vector or disperser of seeds (see morten bag fig). It's on the weed watch list for a reason, not because the council enjoy being fun police but because empirical data suggests a real or potential problem. But you might be right and there is nothing to watch out for (at least for the bangalow). 

Would be good to get your thoughts on cold hardiness? Like I've said earlier, loads of mature bangalows in Hamilton where it is routine to have -5C nights each winter. Non would be of an age that they survived through the record -9.9C night but at least a night or two close to -7C. I don't think these palms are genetically any better than others, hence I'm guessing duration of freeze + high humidity + warm daytime temps have enabled them to survive lower temperatures here without obvious effects compared to other places.

They have been talking about banning them for many years now and for more than one reason and was originally a pet project and driven by Ewen Cameron and pushed by Roger Craw.I went to a meeting on the subject more than 10yrs ago.Auckland council aren't keeping there parks in order where it comes to the  control of them as seen by my pics taken a month ago in orakei and the several hundred 1-3yr old size seedlings under the 3 adult palms.

As for cold hardiness I cant help much from where I live as I don't get frost but do see damaged palms around Auckland and is recorded in Boyers book that bangalows in France were killed at -4.In  saying that I see some often in Drury undamaged and get several frosts a year

 

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8 hours ago, Gary said:

They have been talking about banning them for many years now and for more than one reason and was originally a pet project and driven by Ewen Cameron and pushed by Roger Craw.I went to a meeting on the subject more than 10yrs ago.Auckland council aren't keeping there parks in order where it comes to the  control of them as seen by my pics taken a month ago in orakei and the several hundred 1-3yr old size seedlings under the 3 adult palms.

As for cold hardiness I cant help much from where I live as I don't get frost but do see damaged palms around Auckland and is recorded in Boyers book that bangalows in France were killed at -4.In  saying that I see some often in Drury undamaged and get several frosts a year

 

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How come the juvenile palms are all around the same age? We're previous ones removed or have the palms only just reached a height with enough light to encourrage flowering?

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1 hour ago, HASNZ38S said:

How come the juvenile palms are all around the same age? We're previous ones removed or have the palms only just reached a height with enough light to encourrage flowering?

there are 3 different sizes/age groups there but pics not sharp enough to see that.There has always been good light there and the park mustbe 20acres and bangalow appear confined to that small area where the adult ones are planted

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Hey HAS,

 

 

Are you saying that the fully exposed wild seedlings in Hamilton are also totally undamaged by the frosts you get? Are you totally accurate on the actual temperatures?

 

Ben 

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6 hours ago, Bennz said:

Hey HAS,

 

 

Are you saying that the fully exposed wild seedlings in Hamilton are also totally undamaged by the frosts you get? Are you totally accurate on the actual temperatures?

 

Ben 

Accurate on the temperatures. Have a look at my link on page 1 for the extremes or check out https://cliflo.niwa.co.nz and download the data for yourself ( NIWA data is ruakura and met service hamilton airport but shouldn't be much difference). A little over -3C is the min so far for this year which is trending to be the warmest (average temp) ever and trending for lowest number of ground frost days on record but also wettest June and July (explains the mild temps). Last year we had a -5C. The hamilton basin is renowned for frost, fog, and low wind speeds. Hamilton holds the record for new Zealand's cities for all three. But unlike Hastings we are not exposed to southerlies which generally accompany sunshine as all the mess is trapped in the central North island. Just take a note for the next week the difference between auckland and hamilton (overnight lows) and then do the same in the height of summer (daytime highs), the extremes are far more pronounced in Hamilton for obvious reasons.

number of ground frost days:

https://www.niwa.co.nz/sites/niwa.co.nz/files/sites/default/files/mean_ground_frost_days.csv

Temperature extremes:

https://www.niwa.co.nz/sites/niwa.co.nz/files/import/attachments/summary.xls

the images earlier were taken last week of the seedlings but these are against the house which takes the hit off the frost so it wouldn't be fair to used those as a gauge but there are others in the garden that aren't near the house and they are fine (although I'd say they aren't exposed). The ones at my house are potted and most are in a sheltered position under some trees with the ones in the ground a little more exposed but not by much (no canopy above though), these are all completely unharmed. Gave some small ones to my partners brother who is on a farm near the airport. These ones were in a very exposed location and suffered only minor damage but nothing they wont not survive. I doubt they would have survived last year fully exposed in the open and ground temperatures would have been well below -5C (ambient air temp taken at 1.3m).

the point is that people in marginal climates don't tend to grow them in the open anyway. All the bangalows in the city, even if sheltered from ground frost have had to deal with air temperatures at 1.3m of easily -5C with regular occurrence (a temperature impossible in Auckland or wellington city for example) and survive. I don't think it is particularly hardy genetics, rather some quirk of climate here that helps (maybe humidity, length of freeze etc) that keeps them from serious damage.

 

Edited by HASNZ38S
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Interesting to contemplate why the Hamilton palms should be able to handle the frost more. Just looked at metservice last 30 days for Hamilton compared to Hastings.

Hamilton lowest min of -3C, highest min 12C. Lowest max 7C, highest max 17C.

Hastings low min -1C, highest 11C. Lowest max 11C, highest 21C.

 

By contrast Cape Kidnappers (the closest met station to me);

C. Kidnappers lowest min 6C, highest 12C, Lowest max 10C, highest 18C.

 

And by more contrast Auckland central;

A. Central lowest min 2C, warmest 13C, lowest high 12C, warmest 19C.

 

The mean figures are more important obviously, but I can't be bothered calculating them!

So looking at these figures it is hard to understand why I have seen bangalows in Hastings right now with 2m of trunk and all the foliage browned off by frost, when this is not occurring in Hamilton even on small seedlings. There are bangalows in Havelock North which are totally undamaged though. Hamilton topography varies a bit, is it possible that there is some immediate microclimate variable which makes the official Hamilton readings irrelevant? Only takes a small elevation change to make the difference between killing frost and frost free for example.

 

Hard to believe there are more frosts in Hamilton than Dunedin! Also 47 ground frosts in Tauranga and 25 in Napier... what? I can't help but feel there might be some odd microclimates at play in these figures. Napier gets all the frost drainage from the entire Heretaunga Plains down from the snow covered mountains, it MUST get more frost days than Tauranga. The Tauranga figures must be recorded in a frost hollow, and the Napier ones right by the beach or something.

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The numbers will be accurate and microclimates don't really exist unless you are live along a gully or along the river as topography is rather flat finding a good place for a weather station is not difficult with lots of flat open country... Tauranga should be accurate as the airport is at sea level along the coast but only a few Km inland and temperature drops off fairly quickly.

that 7C day was a serious once in a 3 decade outlier. From memory it was a normal clear sky frosty night and a late fog rolled in during the morning and stayed present all day trapping the cold air at ground level. I had to drive up to auckland to fly to Queenstown and in Auckland that day it was 15C when it was 7C in Hamilton. That day equalled the lowest high on record for the previous 26 years. Every other day has been typically 15-16C and easily above 12C but otherwise groundhog day as usual in the waikato. The reason grass grows so well here and milk industry dominates.

Humidity here is considerably higher than the Hawkes bay. What might interest you is that new Zealand's only tea estate and one of the few outside of the tropics is in waikato (Zealong). The reason for this is the high humidity, high rainfall, good sunshine hours, and relatively mild temperatures are not to disimilar to the tropics/subtropics at altitude. We also grow lots of feijoas commercially for the same reason (would be more if the land wasn't more productive in dairy) and mountain pawpaws, tamarillos etc but the fertile soils make for crap wine and stone fruits get diseases due to the humidity.

This winter has been by far the most mild I can remember. So considering the temperatures get much colder (especially at ground level), yet damage to plants like tea, avocado, bangalows etc is not a big issue and yiu can understand why I'm a little confused why others have problems at even more mild minimums than we get here and yet these bangalow palms grow like weeds

 

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A colleague at work also suggested the high soil moisture content in the waikato may provide some latent heat that takes the edge off the ground surface temperatures which are usually a few degrees lower than the ambient temperatures at 1.3m. That difference might mean a -2C in Hastings means a ground surface temp of -4 to -5C whereas in Hamilton a -2C might only be -3C at ground surface. However, a trunking bangalow is pretty much at the 1.3m level and so is not likely to be as affected...

that theory would explain the prevalence and persistence of seedlings but doesn't explain why trunking palms should be less affected here in Hamilton compared to the Hawkes bay 

Edited by HASNZ38S
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On 4 August 2016 7:19:38 pm, Bennz said:

Interesting to contemplate why the Hamilton palms should be able to handle the frost more. Just looked at metservice last 30 days for Hamilton compared to Hastings.

Hamilton lowest min of -3C, highest min 12C. Lowest max 7C, highest max 17C.

Hastings low min -1C, highest 11C. Lowest max 11C, highest 21C.

 

By contrast Cape Kidnappers (the closest met station to me);

C. Kidnappers lowest min 6C, highest 12C, Lowest max 10C, highest 18C.

 

And by more contrast Auckland central;

A. Central lowest min 2C, warmest 13C, lowest high 12C, warmest 19C.

 

The mean figures are more important obviously, but I can't be bothered calculating them!

So looking at these figures it is hard to understand why I have seen bangalows in Hastings right now with 2m of trunk and all the foliage browned off by frost, when this is not occurring in Hamilton even on small seedlings. There are bangalows in Havelock North which are totally undamaged though. Hamilton topography varies a bit, is it possible that there is some immediate microclimate variable which makes the official Hamilton readings irrelevant? Only takes a small elevation change to make the difference between killing frost and frost free for example.

 

Hard to believe there are more frosts in Hamilton than Dunedin! Also 47 ground frosts in Tauranga and 25 in Napier... what? I can't help but feel there might be some odd microclimates at play in these figures. Napier gets all the frost drainage from the entire Heretaunga Plains down from the snow covered mountains, it MUST get more frost days than Tauranga. The Tauranga figures must be recorded in a frost hollow, and the Napier ones right by the beach or something.

Brrrrr cold night last night but only got to -3C but a moderate frost nonetheless.

no obvious damage to the bangalows at this stage.

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2 hours ago, HASNZ38S said:

Brrrrr cold night last night but only got to -3C but a moderate frost nonetheless.

no obvious damage to the bangalows at this stage.

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We got down to 2.9C last night, but the dewpoint was close to -3C! Air mass straight from Antarctica. Miserable. Warmed up to miserable during the day, but at least it was sunny and out of the wind almost pleasant. Any idea what the dewpoint temp was in Hamilton?

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16 minutes ago, Bennz said:

We got down to 2.9C last night, but the dewpoint was close to -3C! Air mass straight from Antarctica. Miserable. Warmed up to miserable during the day, but at least it was sunny and out of the wind almost pleasant. Any idea what the dewpoint temp was in Hamilton?

Dew point was -3.3C - humidity was 98% when I took a screenshot at -2.9C

 

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At ground level it would have been closer to -5C 

all open ground was covered in frost. Meanwhile in Auckland it got down to a shivering 4C... Lucky for some. I've given up on my black mamaku tree fern, it's good as dead now. Hopefully my puriri and tairare pull through. Although these trees are frost tender natives they are clearly more prone to damage than the bangalows.

Edited by HASNZ38S
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JeffM, do you have an update on how your Archontophoenix Cunninghamiana have done during winters since 2013? I am referring to the trees which were germinated from the seed you collected in Australis in March 2013. 

Are they for sale?

Thanks.

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23 hours ago, Sandy Loam said:

JeffM, do you have an update on how your Archontophoenix Cunninghamiana have done during winters since 2013? I am referring to the trees which were germinated from the seed you collected in Australis in March 2013. 

Are they for sale?

Thanks.

Speaking of which, are yours still okay? I heard Gainesville hit 25f this year.

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Hello Red Rabbit.  I think I had one night that got as low as 31 degrees for an hour or so. That was might coldest night of the year.  No damage. Mine are still fine after roughly five years in the ground.

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19 hours ago, Sandy Loam said:

Hello Red Rabbit.  I think I had one night that got as low as 31 degrees for an hour or so. That was might coldest night of the year.  No damage. Mine are still fine after roughly five years in the ground.

Awesome, glad to hear that. You must have a nice little microclimate set up there!

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