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Rod Andersons desert jungle

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sonoranfans

Last week I visited Rod Andersons place to try to better understand some of the unique aspects of growing palms in the arizona desert. Rod has grown virtually everything from seed since 1995, the year he contracted palmgroliosis, or palm fanatic syndrome. His yard is unique in that most of what he has is not seen in phoenix area and yet most is quite desert adapted. The density of plantings in Rods yard is impressive, unsurpassed in my experience, making photos difficult, especially with shade and sun contrasts. My zoom camera was not able to collect enough light to get clear pics for perhaps 3/4 of the shaded part of the backyard that had hundreds of cycads. A nice digital SLR with a tripod might do some of those areas justice, but I am an amateur witha prosumer camera. Here is a shot of the street view with bismarckias, hyphaene, cycads etc.

Edited by Kostas

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sonoranfans

Here is the north facing side yard, full of livistonas, from fulva(L) to saribus® to mariae and others. Note how close they are and how Rod has used masonry blocks to trap water in pools to the root area. He flood irrigates the whole yard in summer, and mostly withholds water in winter.

Edited by sonoranfans

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sonoranfans

In front, hyphaene thiabaica is a impressive, but still juvenile palm.

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sonoranfans

walking up the drive one sees the hyphaene petersoniana against the house.

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sonoranfans

entering the back through the side yard, one sees sabals, pnoenix rupicolas and theophrasti. the planting density is quite high and everything is happy.

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sonoranfans

I was pretty stunned and didnt get alot of good pics of the backyard, partly due to the shading contrast and part due to being overwhelmed with what I saw. Here is a juvenile Borassus falbellifier with sone cycas cairnsiana in the background.

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sonoranfans

I was in awe of the juvenile Borassus Aethiopum. Rod discusses it with my wife suzanne.

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sonoranfans

I took off my size 12 nike xtrainer and put it on one of the leafbases of the Borassus for scale, just massive petiole thickness, and its still a juvenile!

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sonoranfans

Rod has an amazing place, just about all grown from seed, and most species are desert adapted. I learned quite alot about growing in the desert and I also gained some nice liners and cycads at a great price. I have already planted out 2 Hyphaene thebaica, with livistona saribus, canarensis, and rigida waiting for spring along with a healthy copernicia alba. I also learned that deep watering will enhance growth rate in the desert. My growth rates have been quite good, but an even deeper watering schedule will be implemented next spring. thanks Rod for the advice and the nice batch of liners!

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paulgila

wow,thanks for posting these great pics,tom!

i love how close everything is planted,reminds me of someone....oh,yeah--ME! :lol:

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simona

Veeeeery interesting - gives me a lot to think about.

Thanks for sharing, Tom!

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freakypalmguy

VERY nice!

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bubba

Thanks for the great shots!Where is Rod's place in relation to Phoenix?Those Borassus get very large.I see no reason Arizona should have problems growing virtually any Copernicia and they are a spectacular and underutilized Palm.

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sonoranfans
Thanks for the great shots!Where is Rod's place in relation to Phoenix?Those Borassus get very large.I see no reason Arizona should have problems growing virtually any Copernicia and they are a spectacular and underutilized Palm.

Rod lives in north phoenix, about 15-20mins from downtown. All those palms have seen 23F(a 30 year low) 2 nights in a row(jan 14-15 '07), and have also endured at least 10 115F days since then. the Borassus flabellifier had folliage damage but came right back, the aethiopum wasnt significantly damaged. He has a copernicia alba that is around 20-25' tall that I didnt get a pic of. Come to think of it, there is alot I didnt show a pic of, huge sabals, bizzies, blue serenoa, thrinax, and other palms that I cant even remember the names of. He has a CIDP with a 3' thick trunk(not pineappled) that has only 8-9' of clear trunk, the fattest I've ever seen in person. I think his dense plantings help keep the windchill down, and his palms must have very deeply grown roots, based on his irrigation techniques. I am really ignorant about cycads, but seeing his plantings has "tripped a switch". He has hundreds of cycads, many different species.

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osideterry

Thanks for the tour Tom. Get Rod on the forum... he's already over the edge, and might as well share the comradery.

Bo-RASS-uss! Even the name sounds big!

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sonoranfans
Thanks for the tour Tom. Get Rod on the forum... he's already over the edge, and might as well share the comradery.

Bo-RASS-uss! Even the name sounds big!

I met Rod on this forum, he goes by "Rod". Here is his last thread topic:

http://www.palmtalk.org/forum/index.php?sh...amp;hl=hyphaene

He also posted pics on the "sabal huge leaf" thread last week.

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Tala

what a really great garden, lots of my favs in there. Highly recommend his irrigation methods as well, mimics their habitats. But I think "true" H.petersiana is solitary in habit.

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sonoranfans
what a really great garden, lots of my favs in there. Highly recommend his irrigation methods as well, mimics their habitats. But I think "true" H.petersiana is solitary in habit.

I think I recall discussions on the degree of branching of the various hyphaene(compressa coricea, thebaica, petersoniana), and that the petersoniana are single trunked, but these were planted as a grouping. The grouping of petersoniana trunks were not connected, like all the other hyphaene that were connected at ground level. These hyphaene are amazing palms, the most cold tolerant are the thebaica, and their overall mature height is about 50'. Some of these were partially or wholly defolliated in the 23F weather in jan '07, but they bounced back rapidly. Some species branch above ground many times in their growth to maturity. In another 15-20 years, there will be some monster hyphaene there.

Edited by sonoranfans

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Tala

your post-freeze results are what we see here in cen. Fl. The coriacea palms are markedly successful at returning from the dead, small palms in part due to the meristem being buried a good 3 or 4 ft below soil level. The others are less tolerant but do grow back. The best branching sps are compressa followed by thebaica; dichotoma just does the one subterranean split, coricea will split a half dozen times or more but always below ground. I'm not familiar with any others but there are plenty of outdated names, this a genus in dire need of revision.

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iamjv

Tom,

Great pics, thanks for posting. Do you happen to remember what is the name of the grayish frond palm in post number 2??? You indicated a row of livistona's, just wondering which one that palm is???? Thanks. Jv

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Kris

Dear Tom :)

Thanks for the stills..

And the stills resolution is fentastic,and you are good with you camera.. :)

lots of love,

Kris :)

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sonoranfans
Tom,

Great pics, thanks for posting. Do you happen to remember what is the name of the grayish frond palm in post number 2??? You indicated a row of livistona's, just wondering which one that palm is???? Thanks. Jv

Sorry iamie, but I asked the same question, it's a beauty isnt it. Rod said he needed to consult his species map, and I forgot to remind him later to ID that one. He needs a species map with everything planted. I want one of those grey green ones myself. It almost looks like an austrailis I saw at the treeland nursery near my house(the grey green), but it looks notably happier, more lush, and seems to have a thicker trunk and shorter petioles. I will contact Rod this week to see if I can get an ID.

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sonoranfans
your post-freeze results are what we see here in cen. Fl. The coriacea palms are markedly successful at returning from the dead, small palms in part due to the meristem being buried a good 3 or 4 ft below soil level. The others are less tolerant but do grow back. The best branching sps are compressa followed by thebaica; dichotoma just does the one subterranean split, coricea will split a half dozen times or more but always below ground. I'm not familiar with any others but there are plenty of outdated names, this a genus in dire need of revision.

Tala,

Sure would love to see some florida grown hyhaenes. I'll bet there are more developed hyphaenes in florida than anywhere in the USA. Yeah, Rod had stated that some of the hyphaenes were totally defoliated at 23F, but "came back from the dead" remarkably fast. He did say thebaica was the toughest, with very little damage. The petersoniana appeared notably more blue in frond than the others, but Rod though they might be one of the least cold hardy(hence, up against the house).

Kris, thanks for the kind words. But I think the color in Rods yard makes the photos. It was funny, when I driving down the road looking for housenumbers to find the house, I started laughing when I saw the tremendous plantings, as if I needed a house number to find the place.

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Tala

I'll bet the gray-ish Liv is either rigida or mariae, thats how mine look. Too bad they don't stay maroon all their lives. One the toughest cold tolerant palms there is, remarkably drought tolerant as well. I had to lay soaker hose around the other Aussie Livs to get them started, these you just stick in the ground & go.

I think Hyphaene are one of the easiest and most carefree palm genus to cultivate from seed to maturity, they are not planted nearly as much as they could be around here, or even farther south. I guess this could be due to their eventual size, they definitely need some room to spread.

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chris78

Hi Rod and Iamie... I think Rod told me that the Livistona with the gray-green leaves was L. rigida... we talked about it and how it looks very much like L mariae.... that only main differance are the seeds between the two..... L rigida like mariae has lots of red in the leaves when young and are gray green when older.... We talked how my two large L. mariae look the same....

I am not sure but that what I think he said what it was.... I'm sure he could clarify that..

He does have some small ones.... but I did not buy one because is looks so simular to my L mariae

Edited by chris78

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iamjv

Thanks for the update.... let me know if you confer with Rod and he validates it is L. Rigida. Appreciate it. Jv

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Rod
Last week I visited Rod Andersons place to try to better understand some of the unique aspects of growing palms in the arizona desert. Rod has grown virtually everything from seed since 1995, the year he contracted palmgroliosis, or palm fanatic syndrome. His yard is unique in that most of what he has is not seen in phoenix area and yet most is quite desert adapted. The density of plantings in Rods yard is impressive, unsurpassed in my experience, making photos difficult, especially with shade and sun contrasts. My zoom camera was not able to collect enough light to get clear pics for perhaps 3/4 of the shaded part of the backyard that had hundreds of cycads. A nice digital SLR with a tripod might do some of those areas justice, but I am an amateur witha prosumer camera. Here is a shot of the street view with bismarckias, hyphaene, cycads etc.

Boy, gone a couple of days - then there is this posting!!! It was great having Tom and Chris at my home. I'll try to make some corrections from these posts. The 2nd palm from the left with grey -green leaves is a Livistona mariae.

From left to right the six palms are:

L. fulva, L. mariae, L. nitida, L. natica caveron gorge, L. decipiens, and L. loriphylla.

Rod

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Rod
walking up the drive one sees the hyphaene petersoniana against the house.

Actually, this is a Hyphaene compressa.

Rod

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Rod
Thanks for the great shots!Where is Rod's place in relation to Phoenix?Those Borassus get very large.I see no reason Arizona should have problems growing virtually any Copernicia and they are a spectacular and underutilized Palm.

Bubba:

I've tried several species of Copernica. The two remaining are C. prunifera and C. alba. I had a Cop. rigida that survived the two nights of 23° in 2007 only to die after the wet winter we had last year! I think that if I were to try any other Copernicia's, I would mound them up a little to keep the winter rains away from the roots. It wasn't the sun or the heat, it was the cold and wet that killed them.

Rod

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Rod
Thanks for the tour Tom. Get Rod on the forum... he's already over the edge, and might as well share the comradery.

Bo-RASS-uss! Even the name sounds big!

Actually, I've been around for quite some time. I don't always have the time to respond to posts. I've been "doing palms" since 1995 and have stopped asking peoples advice because growing conditions are so different than Florida and even California. There are so few of us doing palms here in Arizona. Given enough time, there will be more.

People from Florida and California have a big advantage in that there are those that have been growing palms for so much longer. We just lack those people with the decades of experience.

Rod

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Rod
Tom,

Great pics, thanks for posting. Do you happen to remember what is the name of the grayish frond palm in post number 2??? You indicated a row of livistona's, just wondering which one that palm is???? Thanks. Jv

I have tried about every Livistona there is. I have had trouble with a couple: L. endauensis and L. Hoodendorpii. I'm always looking for different Livistonas.

It's odd, I've tried for years to get someone from the University to come by, just not interested. When the Phoenix Botanical gardens decides to get rid of all of the Palms (even the Washies) and all of the Eucalyptus trees, you can understand the uphill battle we have. Boyce Thompson Arboretum has the only collection of palms that I know of - somewhat limited tho.

Rod

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paulgila

so you are "THE" rod as in "rod andersons desert jungle?"

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Rod
so you are "THE" rod as in "rod andersons desert jungle?"

Yep - That's me!

Rod Anderson

Phoenix, Arizona

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chris78

Hi Rod

Thanks for telling me what palm that was..... I was not sure and could not remember exactly what you said about it when I was there. So how are you?

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edbrown_III

Rod,

That garden is quite a feat for 13 years from seed. It is quite a list from 9A. You may have more advantages than you realize tho--- alot of heat to make the Hyphaenes, Borassus grow.. I live in North Fl 9a but we have cool periods in fall and spring where plants dont grow. I have lower low --- 21F in the last 15years and 16F in 89.

I am growing the C. cairnsiana also but it puts up only 3 or 4 leaves a year. nothing like the trunked individuals you have. I tried the Hyphaene and Medemia both here killed by a 20F in early 90s. Copernecia alba grows here tho

Dent Smith garden has a 6 foot tall Copernecia hospita that has been through hell but still lives this might be a candidate to try if you havent already. Again quite a beautiful garden

Best regards,

Ed Brown

  • Upvote 1

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Central Floridave

Am I reading this right, Bismarckia went down to 23 degrees F and survived okay?

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edbrown_III

In North Fl I have a green one that tolerated 21F and 2 weeks of freezes in 99' silver ones died tho

Best regards

Ed

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Jeff Searle

Rod,

You have definitely set the bar for inspiration for those palm collectors in your area or people with similar areas in other parts of the world. I'm sure your yard sticks waaaaaaaay out when you come down YOUR street.

Have you by any chance tried Dypsis ambositrae or Beccariophoenix in the yard from Madagascar?

Jeff

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gsn
In North Fl I have a green one that tolerated 21F and 2 weeks of freezes in 99' silver ones died tho

Best regards

Ed

Rod nice selection of palms, in a not so great palm enviroment. I too am amazed you started those all those from seed only 13 years ago?

Ed that is really wierd as I have heard just the opposite, that the silver Bismarkia were much hardier than the green? :)

Edited by gsn

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Rod
Am I reading this right, Bismarckia went down to 23 degrees F and survived okay?

Here's a foto of my Biz after the two nights of 23°

Rod

post-262-1226465035_thumb.jpg

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