Timberrr!! Down goes the Hercules

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Aloe Hercules are one of my favorite tree aloes. I liked them so much that I decided to plant 3 of them about 5-6 years ago. I could not believe how incredibly fast these things grew. Having heard stories about them falling over at maturity and seeing the rate of speed at which they grew I made the decision to remove two of the three. The two that I removed were located too close to my house and weighed a ton. It took three of us to get them out of the ground and into my friends truck. The third one that I kept was leaning away from my house so I decided to leave it alone, plus my neighbors loved it. I figured that if it did fall there wasn’t much that could be damaged. Well today I will see exactly what got damaged. I am just glad nobody got hurt. At least I will get a lot of cuttings from all the branches. I might just prop up the trunk after ALL the branches are removed and see if it starts new growing points. 

Anyone else have this happen to them? 

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It looks to me that a witch crashed into it and caused it to topple over. I sure hope she has insurance!!

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Such a bummer! Going to have plenty of cuttings! 

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Bad news Bryan.

Glad the kids were not around when this happened.

Any idea on why it fell?

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30 minutes ago, Missi said:

It looks to me that a witch crashed into it and caused it to topple over. I sure hope she has insurance!!

That is too funny!!!! :) 

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Fee-fi-fo-fum....  What a bummer.   Holy smokes that thing is huge.  Glad no one or nothing got hurt.  You almost made a Farmers Insurance commercial!

Did it bust your irrigation?    I guess they eventually just get top heavy when compared to their root system

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:lol: Was going to blame the Witch /Goblin accident as well.. Glad no one.. or that side of the house got hurt / damaged..  Quite possible Jimmyt might be onto something in regards to these growing faster than the roots.. On the other hand, i wonder if Hurcules, and some of the other large, tree Aloe behave in a similar fashion as what we can see with Mesquites / Palo Verde here that are gifted a little too much TLC and don't spread their roots out far enough or deep enough to support more vigorous top growth thus, becoming more susceptible to wind throw or just toppling over unexpectedly without cause.. 

Regardless, you now ill have plenty of Hurcules to sell once potted up and rooted.. and an interesting story to share. Not so bad of an outcome, imo. 

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2 hours ago, Palm Tree Jim said:

Bad news Bryan.

Glad the kids were not around when this happened.

Any idea on why it fell?

Luckily it happened really early this morning. I agree with James in that it was very top heavy compared to the root system.i will probably leave a couple of heads and try to prop it back up and see what happens. I will probably put the rest of the heads in pumice and sell them next year. 

1 hour ago, jimmyt said:

Fee-fi-fo-fum....  What a bummer.   Holy smokes that thing is huge.  Glad no one or nothing got hurt.  You almost made a Farmers Insurance commercial!

Did it bust your irrigation?    I guess they eventually just get top heavy when compared to their root system

Thanks funny. Irrigation was fine for the most part. Most of the pvc lines have been abandoned since I switched the entire yard to drip system. 

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They won't fall if grown in crappy soil/dirt. Good soil turns Hercules into a weakling.

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1 hour ago, Gonzer said:

They won't fall if grown in crappy soil/dirt. Good soil turns Hercules into a weakling.

That’s a great point. I couldn’t agree more. 

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1 hour ago, Gonzer said:

They won't fall if grown in crappy soil/dirt. Good soil turns Hercules into a weakling.

Noted - as i have two young Hercules

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10 hours ago, Silas_Sancona said:

:lol: Was going to blame the Witch /Goblin accident as well.. Glad no one.. or that side of the house got hurt / damaged..  Quite possible Jimmyt might be onto something in regards to these growing faster than the roots.. On the other hand, i wonder if Hurcules, and some of the other large, tree Aloe behave in a similar fashion as what we can see with Mesquites / Palo Verde here that are gifted a little too much TLC and don't spread their roots out far enough or deep enough to support more vigorous top growth thus, becoming more susceptible to wind throw or just toppling over unexpectedly without cause.. 

Regardless, you now ill have plenty of Hurcules to sell once potted up and rooted.. and an interesting story to share. Not so bad of an outcome, imo. 

I knew it was going to happen at some point as the lean got worse by the day. I was just in denial because I didn’t want to see my favorite aloe tree go. I am going to re-plant the stump in hopes that it will start branching early on and continue  to grow. I will definitely miss the tree aloe since it was the centerpiece of my front yard. I did manage to get quite a few large cuttings though. I will probably end up with about 16 cuttings that will be in the range of 15 gallon to 24” box size.  I can’t say I am too disappointed with the outcome. 

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On 11/8/2018, 11:20:17, 5150cycad said:

I knew it was going to happen at some point as the lean got worse by the day

 

On 11/8/2018, 2:28:29, Gonzer said:

They won't fall if grown in crappy soil/dirt. Good soil turns Hercules into a weakling.

As I was reading, I was wondering if you had any sort of warning, so glad to see you did.  I'm wondering what you would call "good soil" versus "crappy soil/dirt"?  I stopped watering mine for the most part a while back, so its roots have to travel to other areas where I have plants on drip.  That said, I have a very fast draining sandy soil here.  Mine seems pretty solid and is about the same size as Brian's.  Like Brian's mine is a focal point in that part of the garden so I too would hate to lose mine.  Sorry about the loss Brian!

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20 hours ago, Tracy said:

 

As I was reading, I was wondering if you had any sort of warning, so glad to see you did.  I'm wondering what you would call "good soil" versus "crappy soil/dirt"?  I stopped watering mine for the most part a while back, so its roots have to travel to other areas where I have plants on drip.  That said, I have a very fast draining sandy soil here.  Mine seems pretty solid and is about the same size as Brian's.  Like Brian's mine is a focal point in that part of the garden so I too would hate to lose mine.  Sorry about the loss Brian!

Thanks Tracy. I remember seeing your aloe Hercules and it was around the same size. After further examination it appears that there were quite a few rotted roots. My entire yard is on a drip system so I was surprised to see as many rotted roots as I did. I am now debating on whether I should treat the rot and plant the main stem in my neighborhood. We have a space in the common area of my neighborhood that has always been an eye sore. Plus it’s the first thing u see when u turn up into our neighborhood from the Main Street. It’s city owned but I have always wanted to plant a couple cool plants there. I guess the worse that could happen is that they could take them out. Decisions decisions. 

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38 minutes ago, 5150cycad said:

I am now debating on whether I should treat the rot and plant the main stem in my neighborhood. We have a space in the common area of my neighborhood that has always been an eye sore. Plus it’s the first thing u see when u turn up into our neighborhood from the Main Street. It’s city owned but I have always wanted to plant a couple cool plants there. I guess the worse that could happen is that they could take them out.

Go for it!  The development that replaced greenhouses next to my house has a perimeter walkway with plantings, which runs across the street from my house.  After the resident's pulled some trees from that common area, one of my neighbor's did a guerrilla planting of Dracaena draco.  I decided to add one myself in that greenbelt.  I have a couple of small Aloe barberae or now Aloidendron barberae growing in pots which I may add to the guerilla plantings if more trees are removed by residents of that neighborhood.  Since they are in dedicated public street walkway not in resident's yards, technically they need city permission to remove trees, but I don't think the same is true to plant ;)

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22 hours ago, Tracy said:

 

As I was reading, I was wondering if you had any sort of warning, so glad to see you did.  I'm wondering what you would call "good soil" versus "crappy soil/dirt"?  I stopped watering mine for the most part a while back, so its roots have to travel to other areas where I have plants on drip.  That said, I have a very fast draining sandy soil here.  Mine seems pretty solid and is about the same size as Brian's.  Like Brian's mine is a focal point in that part of the garden so I too would hate to lose mine.  Sorry about the loss Brian!

Tracy, 'good soil' is one with a lot of good aeration where roots grow uninhibited and thrive, we all know that. Whereas 'crappy' soil, devoid of many of the organics found in 'good' soil, seems to cause roots to hunker down to the nether regions in search of water. This makes for a root structure deeper and much more stable than one that has it's irrigation handed to it on a silver platter.

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Dang Bryan, I never would imagined that Hercules would tip over.  Is your soul like mine with clay under the DG in places?  The holes I tested didn't drain for days, but everything I planted there have been total rockets. 

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5 hours ago, Gonzer said:

'good soil' is one with a lot of good aeration where roots grow uninhibited and thrive, we all know that. Whereas 'crappy' soil, devoid of many of the organics found in 'good' soil, seems to cause roots to hunker down to the nether regions in search of water. This makes for a root structure deeper and much more stable than one that has it's irrigation handed to it on a silver platter.

While I have good soil, I guess my way of circumventing poor rooting is by not watering it directly, thus forcing its roots to reach for water.  That is my strategy at least and it seems to be working thus far.

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On 11/8/2018, 11:20:17, 5150cycad said:

I knew it was going to happen at some point as the lean got worse by the day. I was just in denial because I didn’t want to see my favorite aloe tree go. I am going to re-plant the stump in hopes that it will start branching early on and continue  to grow. I will definitely miss the tree aloe since it was the centerpiece of my front yard. I did manage to get quite a few large cuttings though. I will probably end up with about 16 cuttings that will be in the range of 15 gallon to 24” box size.  I can’t say I am too disappointed with the outcome. 

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No need for pumice.  Several years ago, I got a free cutting of a branch and brought it home to plant.  I showed my wife what it would look like and she was not thrilled.  I had it sitting on the side of my house for months before gifting it to a neighbor (this would allow me to get a cutting of it for later).  Dug a hole and planted it in their front yard.  It took time to root itself, but it grew very well.  

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How fast are they in Florida? :blink:

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12 hours ago, joe_OC said:

No need for pumice.  Several years ago, I got a free cutting of a branch and brought it home to plant.  I showed my wife what it would look like and she was not thrilled.  I had it sitting on the side of my house for months before gifting it to a neighbor (this would allow me to get a cutting of it for later).  Dug a hole and planted it in their front yard.  It took time to root itself, but it grew very well.  

That’s great to know thanks. I have 15 large cuttings so that would be a lot of pumice. Most of the cuttings would have to go in a 15 gallon or something larger. 

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