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Sabal palms in New Mexico

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I remember back in 2006 or 2008 driving to Las Cruces, NM (zone 8a) for work, that there were a number of juvenile Sabal palms lining the street that has all the sports fields on it back then.  I haven't been back there in a while but just thought to check it out on Google maps; and while I could not locate the ones I remembered I did see this gem from July 2015, 4 years following the big freeze event. To me it looks to be a Sabal palmetto based on the size of the crown. I see no evidence, from the picture, of any seed stalks.

 

What do you all make of it?  And do you know of any other large, trunked Sabal species in NM?  I believe I read that there were some in Carlsbad that perished in that same cold snap. 

Post any pics you've got!

 

Here is a link to the area on google maps:

https://www.google.com/maps/@32.2803731,-106.7484536,3a,58.7y,211.85h,87.35t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sDbyb83rAjq-uBqVkvE6Wkw!2e0!7i13312!8i6656?hl=en

Sabal palmetto Las Cruces.png

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1 hour ago, ChrisA said:

I remember back in 2006 or 2008 driving to Las Cruces, NM (zone 8a) for work, that there were a number of juvenile Sabal palms lining the street that has all the sports fields on it back then.  I haven't been back there in a while but just thought to check it out on Google maps; and while I could not locate the ones I remembered I did see this gem from July 2015, 4 years following the big freeze event. To me it looks to be a Sabal palmetto based on the size of the crown. I see no evidence, from the picture, of any seed stalks.

 

What do you all make of it?  And do you know of any other large, trunked Sabal species in NM?  I believe I read that there were some in Carlsbad that perished in that same cold snap. 

Post any pics you've got!

 

Here is a link to the area on google maps:

https://www.google.com/maps/@32.2803731,-106.7484536,3a,58.7y,211.85h,87.35t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sDbyb83rAjq-uBqVkvE6Wkw!2e0!7i13312!8i6656?hl=en

Sabal palmetto Las Cruces.png

theres another one in that picture to the right of the washingtonia robusta

better view of it here

https://www.google.com/maps/@32.2802024,-106.749368,3a,20y,190.26h,90.54t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sakQq7tqYNwliLiV4JNOcGg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656?hl=en

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 Thats a palmetto.

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Posted (edited)

Here something interesting I found on the net…. from the person how did the map…..In answer to the posters here: the graphic provided illustrates the prime palm tree growing zone in New Mexico. Outside this zone palms generally do not do well. Impressive palms. 

NewMexicoPalmTreeZone.gif

Edited by Palm crazy
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15 hours ago, Palm crazy said:

Here something interesting I found on the net…. from the person how did the map…..In answer to the posters here: the graphic provided illustrates the prime palm tree growing zone in New Mexico. Outside this zone palms generally do not do well. Impressive palms. 

NewMexicoPalmTreeZone.gif

Palms do well up in Truth or Consequences/Elephant Butte area as well. There are a couple very large filiferas there (in my avatar pic), and many other filifera/filibusta around town and the reservoir as well as a medium/large Phoenix (sylvestris/hybrid?). That area has a nice borderline 8b high desert climate and is protected by some mountains to the east. Places in-between like Hatch are more like 7b, and have palms that have suffered more cold damage, I'll find the Google Earth photo of an example.

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I agree, palms do best in Southern New Mexico. However both Carlsbad and Hobbs are subjected to extremely cold weather every few years due to blue northers running down the Great Plains.  You won't find may palms in Hobbs for example. Carlsbad does a little better, seems that the California fan palms do best and are most able to survive these extreme cold events.  Truth or Consequences should definitely be circled as well. Many W. robusta have died there over the years but California fan palms are a dependable staple as are Med. Fan palms.  There are several palms in Deming, although not a large number of large ones, which I attribute to lack of proper care and watering. I used to see a California Fan palm in Lordsburg, visible from I-10 looking north, but I haven't been able to locate this palm in over 10 years.  

I think Sabal uresana should be tried much more often in Southern N.M.  There used to be 2 at the Albuquerque biopark. They were planted around the time it originally opened, just along the glass wall of the Sonoran desert enclosure.  Unfortunately they were planted amongst a few Arizona Rosewoods which quickly took over the entire area and shaded them out.  The last time I was there I saw one frond still holding on from one individual, the other had perished.  It's been over 15 years! Imagine what they might have become if they'd been paid a little more care and attention.

We could use some global warming during NM winters! If we didn't get these extreme cold bursts as well as the normal cold of winter evenings and nights we could grow a heck of a lot more. I would LOVE to have Phoenix winters here....

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I grew up in hobbs and it wasnt palm friendly. There were 20+year old sabal palmettos in carlsbad but the 2011 winter killed every single one when they dropped below 0 two days in a row. Several were wrapped in that silver bubblewrap and still died. 

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Thanks for the details, I thought I remembered someone saying those Sabals had died.  It's a shame those events happen, it really puts a damper on the possibilities. If we could just punt three months out of the twelve we'd have some great palms in NM!

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I don't want to go back on my earlier promise, so here's palm carnage in Hatch. This town's 7b on the interactive usda zone map, it seems to be in a cold air drainage spot.

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Hatch,+NM/@32.6672425,-107.1533749,3a,60y,34.06h,82.34t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1swvF1PtuIagfypTo97OhOHQ!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!4m5!3m4!1s0x86dfac37b8e3c689:0x4529aa57946febf8!8m2!3d32.6653572!4d-107.1530744!6m1!1e1

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There are some that made it if you take the highway towards Deming, the short cut.  Those ones you linked I don't think we're ever very well cared for.  They looked nice for a while, late 90's maybe?

 

image.png

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Mexican fan palms are barely zone 8B palms, let alone zone 7B.  Anything West of the Guadalupes will survive much longer and will not have the extreme temperate drops that they do from Carlsbad and Eastward into West Texas.  That cold air likes to ride right down the side of that range on a regular basis, which is why Hobbs/Roswell/Lubbock is much tougher to grow palms than ABQ.

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On 4/6/2017, 7:57:06, pin38 said:

Palms do well up in Truth or Consequences/Elephant Butte area as well. There are a couple very large filiferas there (in my avatar pic), and many other filifera/filibusta around town and the reservoir as well as a medium/large Phoenix (sylvestris/hybrid?). That area has a nice borderline 8b high desert climate and is protected by some mountains to the east. Places in-between like Hatch are more like 7b, and have palms that have suffered more cold damage, I'll find the Google Earth photo of an example.

Agreed - ABQ 21+ years and Las Cruces and El Paso since, I've looked closely at natural and human-made landscapes. While I don't have climate data or plant sightings indicating 8b around T or C or Elephant Butte, maybe - my guess is 8b begins in a narrow thermal belt in Las Cruces (between Valley and Telshor) and in much of El Paso (except the upper valley, far E, and above 4500' in the higher neighborhoods). 

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On 4/4/2017, 6:51:10, Mr.SamuraiSword said:

theres another one in that picture to the right of the washingtonia robusta

better view of it here

https://www.google.com/maps/@32.2802024,-106.749368,3a,20y,190.26h,90.54t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sakQq7tqYNwliLiV4JNOcGg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656?hl=en

My camera is out; on the drive to my hike up Tortugas Mtn, I'll go by that Sabal and get a closer look. I knew they had to be fine here.

Thanks for the info!

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On 4/5/2017, 4:00:35, Palm crazy said:

Here something interesting I found on the net…. from the person how did the map…..In answer to the posters here: the graphic provided illustrates the prime palm tree growing zone in New Mexico. Outside this zone palms generally do not do well. Impressive palms. 

NewMexicoPalmTreeZone.gif

Cool! This map is a start, but it hugs latitude too much and misses terrain, plains vs. intermountain (Rio Grande Valley), and temperatures.

A surprise to me was learning how Lordsburg is more like Silver City or Albuquerque than Las Cruces or El Paso in growing season, typical and extreme lows, plants in the wild or in town...exceptions are a few hotter days. Roswell and Hobbs are called a "bipolar climate" by locals, often warmer than most of NM until their winter cold fronts regularly slide down...typically drop their highs from 72 to 28, while in ABQ the drop is more 58 to 40. Add that up over a few winters, and not very "palmy".

As others said, T or C is a good palm climate. To that I would add where palms larger than Trachys can be counted on, the gateway heading south is T or C, Tularosa, and Fort Stockton TX (maybe Carlsbad NM). Exceptions are the southern mountains and cold spots like Hatch, NE and E Las Cruces (Metro Verde, etc), or parts of Alamogordo (Feb. 2011 at -10 to -15F in much of town).

Not many larger palms in my area, but enough variety to make the move worth it, and only a few winters where W. filifera gets brown fronds. El Paso is probably the gateway to decent Phoenix dactylifera.

 

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Posted (edited)

.

Edited by Desert DAC
accidental double post - please delete
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Posted (edited)

On 4/6/2017, 11:09:14, ChrisA said:

Thanks for the details, I thought I remembered someone saying those Sabals had died.  It's a shame those events happen, it really puts a damper on the possibilities. If we could just punt three months out of the twelve we'd have some great palms in NM!

True, but then visualize Tucson July-August. Your posts are refreshing to read, by the way!

Edited by Desert DAC
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Posted (edited)

I followed the Google address and drove right to the Sabal spp. at NMSU in Las Cruces today, and it looks great. The palm stands about 20' tall or slightly more, it has some volunteers, and the best part is that it looks good in a rather xeric landscape with Buffalo Juniper, and paving expanses. Imagine how it might look even better in a wider planting area with more Sabals, and an understory more interesting than low junipers.

I'm not sure which Sabal it is, but I wish I knew - it seems S. mexicana has potential for sure, maybe S. uresana and S. palmetto.

Some pics:

DSCN8662-SML.jpg.e1644a41935faceada59125DSCN8672-SML.jpg.fc4edde19c0831dc3e1e58fDSCN8666-SML.jpg.73670a6fae0f01c1b74cb60DSCN8676-SML.jpg.6a3b6df5a84a74d31db62f2DSCN8674-SML.jpg.0be5b7d8abfcfeb45c2f90e

Edited by Desert DAC
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that's a palmetto.

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Nice Pics Desert DAC,  thanks for the compliment also. :)

 

Seeing the volunteers makes me want to drive down to pick some up!  I agree with Texas_ColdHardyPalms that it is a Sabal.  I found a really cool series of articles to help Identify sabal species, which includes a species key.  I think it was on the Southeast Palm Societies website somewhere in the Newsletters!?!  I will try to find it and post a link.

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Thanks, all. After looking at more forums, the "boots" are indeed less symmetrical on S. palmetto (the Las Cruces / NMSU palm) than S. mexicana. 

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On 4/10/2017, 3:40:22, ChrisA said:

Nice Pics Desert DAC,  thanks for the compliment also. :)

 

Seeing the volunteers makes me want to drive down to pick some up!  I agree with Texas_ColdHardyPalms that it is a Sabal.  I found a really cool series of articles to help Identify sabal species, which includes a species key.  I think it was on the Southeast Palm Societies website somewhere in the Newsletters!?!  I will try to find it and post a link.

When I was taking pics, the campus police drove by but just for my headlights being on. Not sure who one contacts there to be OK'd getting some volunteer plants.

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I wish they would plant Sabal palmetto Moreno on the west coast. They would be great for coastal Oregon and Washington. 

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Sabal Anything > sabal palmetto.  True story.

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