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Rafael

Help saving Howea Fosteriana

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Rafael

I have been worried, because my howea fosteriana, wich i have indoors, is not fine.

I have it indoors for 3 months, and i think it stopped its growth.

I dont know why.

I try not to overwater.

But it might suffer with the warm-up of the house.

Wel, and considering its size, i have already decided to put it on the ground.

But i can do it only in March/April.

I need help for two question i have:

1. should it be a good idea that, while waiting March/APril, to put the pot outside?

2. Considering, sometimes, a light frost, and

x) the east sun rising,

y) west sea winds,

what side should i choose??

Several weeks ago i put this topic for discussion, where you can see my beautiful palm, wich i want not to loose.

http://www.palmtalk.org/forum/index.php?showtopic=20663

post-3292-1260112591_thumb.jpg

Edited by rafael

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Alicehunter2000

I read your earlier post and see your problem a little more clearly......any thoughts of using a systemic fugicide? I do not have Howea and know very little about it.......just my gut feeling is that there is something going on under the soil.......I would really be even more careful not to overwater. Light levels look good where it is.

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Kostas

The number one reason for Howea fosteriana deaths indoors is overwatering. I dont know if thats the case with yours but thought i would let you know.

I cannot see anything wrong with the palm,i only see a newly opened leaf which looks great but if as you say its not doing well and has stopped growing,my best advise would be to place it in the ground now with 60% or 30% shadecloth above it. Kentias love cool tempratures and grow well at this period of the year and you probably got 2 months before a real freeze(at least thats how many months i got here before any serious frost makes its appearance...). The Kentia will have to survive your colds yearly so it wont make much difference if you plant it now in the begining of winter or in spring. And dont think it will be stronger next winter if you plant it this spring,it wont,it will be severly burnt and damaged from the summer sun and looking awfull so you dont help it anywhere by delaying its planting in the ground...

Just to see how much they do not mind winter planting,i seperated a Howea fosteriana trio in the middle of winter and planted them to individual pots outside(in shade) and when spring came,they hadnt lost even a single leaf! So yours should be fine but if you reach its limit of cold tolerance,it will of course be damaged,as it would next year anyway...I only got to +0,1C last year and -3,6C is the lowest ever recorded in my area :)

And to answer your question:

1. Yes but if your Howea is not doing well,the soil in your pot may not be good and hold excessive moisture which may kill the palm. Planting it in the ground will help with drainage if of course you plant it in good soil and never water unless the soil starts to dry out.

2.The side you like most i would say,it should be equally happy in both positions but it would appreciate a shade cloth for some months till it gradually adjusts to more sun so that it doesnt burn all at once but gradually and while producing new,hardy leafs :)

Wish you the best of luck! :)

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Rafael

Thanks David and Kostas.

I. This photo has two months; on the link above i have uploaded other photos wich are more recent.

II. The top of the new leaf is becoming gradually brown.

III. What kind of shade colth do you mean Kostas, considering that this palm is 2 mts tall?

IV. My doubt at the point 2 is concerned to what they say frost damage when sun rising light; and, on the other side (west), sea and frequent winds (however, Kostas, this side only sees direct sunlight at

16.00 pm.

At last, here we freeze in late December and January, usualy.

Last year maybe -2º C, and this year only 5ºC, for now.

Thank u very much!!

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Kostas

Hi again Rafael,

II. Stop watering if this is happening and let the surface of the soil dry out well before watering again. I would reccomend changing the soil if you want to keep it potted other wise plant it in the ground removing as much of the soil you can and i bet there will be many rotten roots. Remove these along with the soil,washing it out of the healthy root ball and plant in cactus soil or other good quality and fast draining soil keeping just moist. The rain keeping the new soil moist is not a problem as it does not promote rot like bad drainage does.

III. Shade cloth is a kind of cloth sold at the nurseries for shading plants.Its sold by % of light it blocks. The height of the palm is not a problem as you will secure the shade cloth on 4 culms or long pieces of wood which you will insert in the ground verticaly to make a tent. The thick bamboo culms,also sold at nurseries,are usually 3meter long and do the job fine for big palms or cut in piecies,for small palms too :)

IV. Still,its not too important.Both places have their good points and their drawbacks. The east place,as you said has early sun exposure to heat things up yet it will take more frost there than at the west place that has more coastal exposure and from what you say,overhead protection which is a plus as good or better than early morning sun.

However,is this overhead protection in the form of trees or a construction? If a construction is above the planting place,then its not a good place to plant it as it will probably grow straight to the ceilling and not curve away...

If its trees,then its a great position but it will be slow there. A sunny position may make for an awfull look the first year but also makes for faster growth once sun acclimated :)

-2C should not be too bad for the Howea although,as said,mine has never seen a real freeze,temps stayed on the +C last year :drool:

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Pivi
my best advise would be to place it in the ground now with 60% or 30% shadecloth above it. Kentias love cool tempratures and grow well at this period of the year and you probably got 2 months before a real freeze(at least thats how many months i got here before any serious frost makes its appearance...).

I would not transplatnt palms in winter. Don't know how temperatures are in Portugal, but is is winter in 2 weeks.

I would maybe put it outside, but not transplant it before march. January is usually the coldest month and it's coming very soon.

It all depends what this winter will bring us. They already give some wheather reports is will cool down alot in 5-6 days.

Edited by Pivi

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Rafael

Planting it on the west side, it would be just near the house, on the left side, but not below of this mature sabal palmetto

post-3292-1260118339_thumb.jpg

Edited by rafael

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Kostas

This locations seems pretty good with a big nearby palm and a developing Pine nearby but the locations are pretty much equal in plus/cons i think,choose whichever you think this palm fits best with its surroundings :) If you only get -2C the coldest night,it shouldnt have a problem wherever and if its put. If you get colder,i would plant it within 2 meters from the house's wall and plant another tree close to it so that it will get overhead protection in the near future and protect it till then.

From my experience,Howea does not mind transplanting even just before the cold sets it,you just protect from sun and winds for some months which is easily done with a shade cloth tent :)

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Rafael

This is the east side, with morning sun rising.

I was thinking about puting my howea fosteriana in the ground, just below this archontophonenix cunninghamiana.

My only fear is that we have here, sometimes, light frost, and this is the sun rising side.

On the west side, the one showed at the post before, we have here, sometimes, strong sea winds, wich i am afraid can damage this howea, art least inicialy.

Well, here i am, not very secure about wich place to put howea in the ground.

post-3292-1260220914_thumb.jpg

Edited by rafael

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Kostas

This is a good side too,maybe a little better than the other as you have grown up palms that already provide overhead protection and because of the early warming up of the sun. However long term,the other position would be as good and you will have to plant something there too anyway :)

Its true the high sea winds will damage this palm initially but its habitat suggests that it can take sea winds unharmed once acclimated :)

I can understand you being nervous about where to plant your Howea fosteriana but they arent too fussy palms,they just need good drainage... :)

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Jason Baker Portugal

Here in coastal P Howeas don´t get too much sunburn. The climate is very oceanic especially where Rafael lives (very close to the beach). I would leave it outside under a roof and let it get more air but no frost. This way it could start to aclimatize and maybe even get a little sun. Most of mine are in a shady spot under large trees and I hope that when they make it through the canopy in 30 years they will be all right with the cold. I have about 20 of them and they are very slow growing. When they do get frosted they take a long time to come back because they only put out a couple of leaves a year here. When they get bigger they grow a little faster with very abundant watering. I think that these palms are fantastic looking in groups and I have several planted here and there that I "rescued" from nurseries as sick multiples and then separated them and planted them outside where they are now thriving.

Jason

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Rafael

Hi Jason

What kind of roof are you talking about? Could it be under a palm canopy?

And considering what i said above wich place would be better: facing sometimes strong sea winds, ore sun rising, with few light frost, not always in winter? Anyway always in the ground, because my howea is not fine in a pot.

What about some fotos of your howeas?

Edited by rafael

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Rafael

Well, I'm done!!!

Facing west sea winds, and with absolute sun exposure after 12:30!

At this moment, 15ºC, but lower next days.

How about a shadecloth?

Anyway, beautiful!!

post-3292-1260361993_thumb.jpg

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Pivi

Very nice Rafael.

I just hope you won't have problems, they give much lower temperatures next weeks, and i alway hear aroun it's not good to transplant palms in winter.

We'll see. Maybe you won't very low temperatures overthere.

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Zeeth

Throw down some root stimulator to help prevent transplant shock. If it goes into shock, it could die because of the temps. Good luck with this one. For this winter, protect it if it will get 5C or lower, and also if it will get frosts. Next year you won't have to worry about low temps, but this year you will.

I heard you ordered a Beccariophoenix alfredii, have you gotten it yet?

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Kostas

Looking great Rafael,well done! :)

Were there any of the roots rotten? If yes,did you removed the soil?

I would suggest you protect it with a shade tent(using shade cloth) as it may burn,if not now,surely once spring arrives...A shade tent will protect it from frost somewhat too,especially if you cover the shade tent with a plastic during the below 0C nights. Your Howea will be fine,all you need to do is keep it on the dry side for some months to recover from the starting fungus infection it probably had. Sprayheads sprinkling it every night or even every week dont help with that though so if you could adjust them not to hit it or its rootzone would be great. When the weather warms up again,you can readjust them to cover the whole grass area but now its not good getting water every night. If you dont want to adjust your sprayheads,you can mechanically prevent the water from reaching it by putting a shade cloth ''wall'' between the Kentia and the sprayhead at the desired distance from the palm :)

A root stimulant wont hurt although i have never used any yet on any of my plantings.

Btw,if all goes well for me,i will be planting a BIG Beccariophoenix sp. ''Windows'' in the ground during my Christmass holidays!!! :drool: Yay!!! :drool: Beccariophoenix alfredii are beauties too and i am growing many seedlings of this species :) Looking forward to pictures of yours :)

Wish you the best for your Howea! :)

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Rafael

Well my friends,

Thanks for your words.

When i took it from the pot, surprise, no rotten roots, new roots sprouting, but..., the old roots completely dry, and the base of the pot, with wet manure!

So, i think water didnt pass through the old roots, but only by its side, and then felt down until where manure was.

I have given some watered fertilizer, but the sprayheads are stoped since November, and will remain until March.

I am thinking about a sun and light frost protection, well but anyhow, it will be hard to protect from eventualy strong winds!

Temperature here is great (14/19 ºC), but they announce 5/12 for the next week, and then, i need to be quick!

I ordered a beccariophoenix seedling, but i dream to order a bigger one!!!!!!!!!

I will go on updating pics of this girl :drool:

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Kathryn
The number one reason for Howea fosteriana deaths indoors is overwatering.

I doubt mine will ever suffer from that. :unsure:

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Kathryn
When i took it from the pot, surprise, no rotten roots, new roots sprouting, but..., the old roots completely dry, and the base of the pot, with wet manure!

So, i think water didnt pass through the old roots, but only by its side, and then felt down until where manure was.

That's interesting. I'll have to keep that in mind when transplanting my indoor palms.

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Rafael

Hi Kathryn, do u have howeas outdoor too? How they behave with your climate?

Zeeth and Kostas, the protection could be a shade cloth, but with only top protection, or side protection too? To face light frost is top protection enough?

Edited by rafael

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Kostas

Hi Rafael :)

For sun and frost protection,overhead protection is enough,no need for shade cloth covering the sides. However,when its very windy there,you could add shade cloth to the sides and protect it from wind only for this winter that is not yet established :)

Kathryn,good to hear that! I take good care of my indoor Chamaedorea elegans too and try not to overwater. When i repotted my Chamaedorea earlier this Fall,i too found that most of the soil of my Chamaedorea was completely dry with the exception of the bottom 1/3 of the pot that was very moist/wet and composed solely from earthworm dropings as i have eartworms in its pot :) It seemed pretty odd to me too but its logical when you think of it as if you water when the soil is dry at the surface,it can run off thesides or find holes and follow them down so gradually you end up with something like what i described which actually is very good as it prevents rotting problems from appearing while it keeps the plant in tip top condition :)

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Rafael

I will be protecting with shade 70%, and frost protection when needed.

Here bambu maximum size is 240 cm, not enough, so i will surround it, using another wood structure.

Later uploading photo.

Thanks

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Kostas

Sound perfectly good to me but you will need to change to less shade in a few months for it to start adjusting to eventually full half day sun. 70% shade makes a better frost and wind breaker though so its a good starting choice for winter. Looking forward to pictures!!!! :)

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Rafael

At last, i have covered it with a 45% shade cloth, and, above it, only when needed, a special frost covering.

Soon, i will upload photos.

:winkie:

By the way, freeze just arrived, last night, -1,4ºC, and some light frost (curious, no frost at the east side, sea winds protected; no frost near the howea, and behind canopys).

Edited by rafael

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Pivi

I told you cold weather was coming. I hope your Howea will do fine since it has been transplatend only a few days ago. I'm interested to know.

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Rafael
I told you cold weather was coming. I hope your Howea will do fine since it has been transplatend only a few days ago. I'm interested to know.

This palm couldnt stand anymore potted, as i saw with my own eyes how her roots were.

This roots weakness is her big problem, i hope she will pass through it.

Anyway offcourse freeze and frost may be a potencial threat, but i am working on minimize that.

Thanks Pivi, i will update data and photos! :winkie:

Best Christmas wishes!

Rafael

Edited by rafael

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Kostas

It will do fine Rafael,-1,4C is nothing for much more tropical plants than Howea :) I am happy to hear there was no frost where you planted it and btw,your protection sounds great :) Looking forward to photos!!! :drool:

We are still frost free here,even in cold Melissia...No freeze yet,the minimum we saw recently was arround 4,5C in Melissia... :) And i hope it remains like that as all my tropical palms are still outside unprotected,waiting for my basement to be painted... :unsure:

Wish you have great Christmass holidays! :)

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Rafael
It will do fine Rafael,-1,4C is nothing for much more tropical plants than Howea :) I am happy to hear there was no frost where you planted it and btw,your protection sounds great :) Looking forward to photos!!! :drool:

We are still frost free here,even in cold Melissia...No freeze yet,the minimum we saw recently was arround 4,5C in Melissia... :) And i hope it remains like that as all my tropical palms are still outside unprotected,waiting for my basement to be painted... :unsure:

Wish you have great Christmass holidays! :)

I wish the best to you and your palms, Kostas!

Hope this winter bring no severe climatic conditions, here and in your places!

I will upload photos for sure, think tomorrow.

Best Christmas wishes, my friend!

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Pivi
It will do fine Rafael,-1,4C is nothing for much more tropical plants than Howea :)

True!

But i would just like to mention that minimum temperature a palm can stand is not the same for specimen that was in the ground for a year, two or more, and for the one that was just planted few days before low temperatres-winter. Generally it's not good to plant or repot palms during the winter.

That's just my opinion ;) If it was me, i would have waited for March :greenthumb:

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Jason Baker Portugal

Rafael, did it make it through last nights heavy freeze? I haven´t looked at mine yet. Jason

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Rafael

Sunday: 2,4ºC

Monday: -1,4ºC

Tuesday: -2,6ºC, maybe the lowest temperature we can raise here, i think and i hope! :drool: No wind, few humidity.

This last night with a stronger frost than yesterday.

Near my howea, 1 mt far from and around it, maybe 20% frost than in other neighbour areas, and no visible frost on it or below it.

Again, no frost at all at the east side of the house, sea winds protected.

My howea, for now, shows no change at all.

post-3292-1260890056_thumb.jpg

post-3292-1260890083_thumb.jpg

Edited by rafael

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Kostas

Looking good Rafael!!! :drool:

-2,6C is surely not enough to kill a Howea fosteriana so dont worry too much,its only capable of damaging it under certain circumstances which i dont know for certain what they are unfortunately... :unsure: I have heard of damage with temprature at 29F and have also read of no damage much below so there is something that contributes to this early damage or there is great hardiness variation between speciemen...I dont know which is true. Most Howea shows damage 1 week after the freeze so you should know soon if its gonna remain great looking. But Howea under canopy seldom damages much if at all so with the shade cloth above it you may have gotten away with no damage at all! :)

Wish you a mild winter and no harder freeze than that! :)

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Rafael
Looking good Rafael!!! :drool:

-2,6C is surely not enough to kill a Howea fosteriana so dont worry too much,its only capable of damaging it under certain circumstances which i dont know for certain what they are unfortunately... :unsure: I have heard of damage with temprature at 29F and have also read of no damage much below so there is something that contributes to this early damage or there is great hardiness variation between speciemen...I dont know which is true. Most Howea shows damage 1 week after the freeze so you should know soon if its gonna remain great looking. But Howea under canopy seldom damages much if at all so with the shade cloth above it you may have gotten away with no damage at all! :)

Wish you a mild winter and no harder freeze than that! :)

Well, until now nothing is showing damage on my howea.

From those two nights on, the minimum was 4ºC.

I will be looking forward for any damage, and hope not to find it!

They predicted that tomorrow we will raise maybe -1ºC, but i hope theyr wrong :drool: !!!!

Thanks a lot Kostas for your kind words!

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Kostas

Dont worry about -1C although i still wish you dont get it,who like below 0C tempratures in a palm garden anyway :)

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Rafael

Last night too freezy, -3,8ºC! :(

Think its impossible to be repeated.

Anyway, almost no frost near my howea!

On the opposite side, my archontophoenix cunninghamiana, with parcialy burn leaves.

Now 8ºC.

After warm temps, during November and half December, instantly these 2/3 bad nights....

But i believe in my palms! :drool:

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Kostas

I am very sorry to hear you got that cold :( Its great however to hear that damage to your palms has been minimal for such low temps! I hope it remains that way and doesnt progress... :)

We are gonna have 3 consquetive cold nights here but no colder than +4C predicted fortunately!

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Rafael

Howea is doing fine, for now.

A little sun burn, only at (two) leaves (parcialy) hitten by sun.

:yay:

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Rafael

After some episodes of freeze and frost, my lovely howea became 100% leaf burn and defoliated.

I have unconvered it (it had a superior sun and frost protection), because of wind danger for nearby structurs.

In the last two weeks, the new spear, stopped for maybe 4 months, began moving, and some of the leaves began moving too (maybe they were not completely grown).

And so, here is my howea, coming back.

I am wondering about how much can it grow from now untill October. How much new leaves? 2 or more?

post-3292-12690131757349_thumb.jpg

post-3292-1269013219422_thumb.jpg

Edited by rafael

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Kostas

Good to hear its coming back after such low tempratures it facedsmilie.gif I would say 2-3 leafs till October would be a very good number for a defoliated Howea to grow. I am say maybe 3 only because the spear is already big and not too too far from opening.Still it will be a good 1-2months before it opens...

I see some black on the trunk.Is it from cold or is it getting sprayed dailly from overhead irrigation? The second isnt good and the blackening may progress if its fungal.

Wish you the best of luck with if and complete recoverysmilie.gif

P.s.:Just to avoid any confussion and hard feelings,i only told you to ground plant it during the winter because you told me -3C is the minimum it would see.-3,8C and below is not well acceptable from Howea and i wouldnt have told you to ground plant it. Heating cables is what i would have used if i ground planted it and expected that low tempratures to occur...My Howea saw just -1C this winter or just a little lower and are as happy as ever,as are my Archontophoenixsmilie.gif

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