Cocoa Beach, Florida

23 posts in this topic

I made a short trip from my home in the Orlando area to Cocoa Beach, Florida last week.  As the expressway turned South approaching the coast, it was like crossing a line.  Suddenly, it looked like I was in South Florida.

During the time I was over there, I traveled from Cocoa Beach all the way down to Indian River County.  I crossed the Sebastian Inlet bridge and explored Orchid Island.

The entire trip along route A-1-A on the barrier island, it looked like the area was solidly Zone 10B based upon what grows there.  Coconut palms are everywhere from Cape Canaveral south.  Back from the exposure to the salt spray, there are Royal Palms.  The 520 causeway connecting Cocoa Beach and Merritt Island has been landscaped with Royal Palms.  Also, Adonidia's are everywhere as you can see from the attached pictures.

Except where the fruit has been removed to protect people and cars below, there were lots of coconuts in the trees.

Just an amazing area.

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Here are the images.

 

ck

Adonidia at Hilton 3.jpg

Adonidia at Hilton.jpg

Coconuts in Parking Lot.jpg

Landscaping at Hilton 2.jpg

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It is amazing seeing that areas micro climate. 

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Absolutely.  It's 55 minutes from my house here in Winter Springs.  And, it's like I drove the 3 hours to Ft. Lauderdale.  The landscape looks the same...

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Yes it's amazing what ocean heat can do. I live on the northern beaches of Sydney, Australia and the coldest minimum thus far was 6 degrees Celsius, and 40km inland 2 Celsius.

pretty much each District has a different climate  

 

 

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Cocoa Beach, like my own Vero Beach, is possibly at a palm maximum right now.  Seven years since a bad winter and longer since a bad windstorm.  

Satellite Beach and Melbourne Beach benefit even more impressively from being out to sea.  

 

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Posted (edited)

Parts coastal Brevard County really do look like somewhere in South Florida. It is pretty impressive considering the same latitude on the west coast of Florida is low end 9B. 

Edited by RedRabbit
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I believe it's due to the way the coast below Cape Canaveral protrudes out to the East and the proximity of the warm waters of the Gulf Stream.

North of Cape Canaveral, things change dramatically.  The winter low extremes can be significantly lower.

South of Melbourne Beach, the barrier island looks like it you could be in the keys...

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Of course the great 1989 freeze, which came on top of bad freezes a few years earlier, killed even native tropical plants (like gumbo-limbo trees) in Cocoa Beach.  This recent article from the Central Florida Palm & Cycad Society is a splendid summary of cold carnage.  

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I'm always impressed by Merritt Island, my in laws don't live far from there. The tropicals look so at home there and there are so many of them when not far up the coast in Daytona you're mostly in Sabal-ville again. 

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"SabalVille" is even changing with this warm stretch. 

20170207_163936.jpg

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18 hours ago, ck_in_fla said:

I believe it's due to the way the coast below Cape Canaveral protrudes out to the East and the proximity of the warm waters of the Gulf Stream.

North of Cape Canaveral, things change dramatically.  The winter low extremes can be significantly lower.

South of Melbourne Beach, the barrier island looks like it you could be in the keys...

I was under the impression that the Gulf Stream current hugs the Florida Keys, then hugs the edge of southeastern Florida as far north as Palm Beach, and then moves away from the Florida coast diagonally north-eastward towards Bermuda (and, eventually Europe).  If so, Brevard County would not benefit very much from the Gulf Stream, would it?  

 

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I think Brevard does benefit from the Gulf Stream.  Due to the geography of the coast and the direction taken by the warm offshore water, the benefit drops off sharply North of Cape Canaveral.

On a related note, I do know that from an offshore fishing perspective, it takes less time to get out into the Gulf Stream from Canaveral than it does from Ponce Inlet.

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I think also what saves them is all the open water when we get those cold fonts that blow NW winds. Same is true where I'm at on beachside in Daytona Beach shores. We are north of New Smyrna and have plenty of stuff that shouldn't make it this far north. For now that is. 

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Since I live here, here is what I am growing here in the ground in Cocoa Beach (I did a cut and paste and unfortunately the formatting is a little wacky):

Actinokentia divaricata

Adonidia merrelli

Archontophoenix alexandrae
Archontophoenix maxima
Archontophoenix tuckeri
Areca vestiaria (just planted 4 months ago so we'll see)
Burretiokentia hapala
Burretiokentia koghiensis
Chamaedoria ernesti augusti
Chambeyronia macrocarpa 
Chambeyronia hookeri 
   -reverse watermelon
Cocos nucifera Green Malayan (x7)
Cocos nucifera Golden Malayan
Cocos nucifera Panama Tall
Coccothrinax borhidiana 
Coccothrinax crinita (x2)
Coccothrinax miraguama sp. havanensis
Coccothrinax unk. hybrid
Copernicia Macroglossa
Cyphophoenix elegans (x2) 

Cyphosperma balansae

Dyctiosperma album (red form)

Dyctiosperma album (conjugatum) 
Dypsis decaryi
Dypsis decaryi x leptocheilos hybrid
Dypsis lanceolata
Dypsis leptocheilos (2)
Dypsis lutescens (2)
Dypsis Mirabilis 
Dypsis pembana (2)
Hyophorbe lagenicaulis (2)
Kentiopsis oliviformis (2)
Kentiopsis pyriformis (2)
Neoveitchia storkii (just planted so we'll see)
Pinanga Coronata (2) 

Pseudophoenix sargentii (2)

Ptychosperma elegans (4)
Ptychosperma unknown hybrid
Rhapis excelsa
Roystonea regia
Syagrus romanzoffiana (2)
Thrinax radiata (2)
Veitchia arecina (4)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Thanks for the list. It's impressive 

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The thing I found amazing was that it doesn't look like anything over there has been adversely impacted by cold temperatures in many, many years.  This was especially evident South of Melbourne Beach.

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I have noticed that Melbourne Beach itself is full of coconut trees, but I presume that you are referring to Vero Beach when you say "south of Melbourne Beach."

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No, I'm referring to that drive on A-1-A from just South of Melbourne Beach to Sebastian Inlet.  Never made it into Vero Beach itself.  Crossed the bridge at Sebastian Inlet and proceeded South into an area known as Orchid Island in Indian River County.  All of that part of the barrier island, East of the Intracoastal Waterway, looks to me like it could be in the Keys.

Also saw some beautiful homes with incredible landscaping.

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FL is truly heavenly! :wub: Thanks for sharing!

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If you were on Orchid Island on A-1-A, you were just a stones throw from John's Island. I certainly consider this Vero Beach. It is a truly beautiful area in which the Coconut grows next to the Live Oak. Mystical convergence zone!

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You make an excellent point.  And, one that was lost on me (until you pointed it out).

I'm guessing there aren't many places where you can see established Coconut Palms right along side Live Oaks...

And, I did see signs for John's Island.  I think if I continued, it was only 5 or 10 minutes before I would have been in Vero Beach.

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I found two more pictures from the trip.

One shows the landscaping right outside Ron Jon's which is right on the ocean near the intersection of 520 and A-1-A.  Lots of Anodidias there too.

The second picture was taken as we were waiting for a table at Jazzy's restaurant which is further South on A-1-A on the West side of the road.  Off topic, a great place for seafood.  Not fancy, but really great Chowder and Lobster Rolls.  As I looked up at the Coconut Palm in the picture, it was obvious that they keep the fruit trimmed on this particular tree as people routinely sit under it.  If a Coconut falls from a tree and hits a person just right, it could easily kill someone...

RonJons.jpg

Jazzys.jpg

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