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Alicehunter2000

Best Trachy Look-a-Like for Acoelorrhaphe wrightii

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Alicehunter2000

As everyone knows I experienced a brutal winter. One of the palms that took the most damage was Acoelorrhaphe wrightii. Since it is likely that the tall trunks on this palm will not survive, I was looking for a Trachycarpus species that would look similar that could be planted in the same area.

I fully expect the A. wrightii to survive at the bottom (root zone), but it will be several years to get the trunks back to the size that they were. I figured if this happens again at least I could group some Trachies in there to give me something more than headless trunks to look at.

So what species looks the most like A. wrightii? and is cold hardy to 15 degrees F.?

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Xhoniwaters1

If you are looking for insta-trunk then that would probably narrow it down to the 1 or 2 most common species, especially finding 15 gal or bigger around here. Trachy princeps would be a great choice but your A. wrightii palms would most likely have grown back to your starting height by the time that one would have any height.

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Phoenikakias

You can use Chamaerops humilis var gracilis/arborescens for an identical visual effect created by Paurotis, provided that former is more cold tolerant than latter and you can find this cultivar in decent size.

post-6141-0-19104800-1393279353_thumb.jppost-6141-0-96346000-1393279458_thumb.jppost-6141-0-55052800-1393279572_thumb.jp

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Phoenikakias

Finally other specimens of same cultivar planted at a greater distance from each other

post-6141-0-69798400-1393279698_thumb.jp

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Xerarch

I agree about the Chamaerops, the first time I took a glance at one that was trimmed up like that I thought it was acoelorraphe. Took a minute to realize it just plain a med palm with some serious trunk shaving, gives a unique look to it.

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Alicehunter2000

I have a bunch of C. humilis that I've grown from seed. They are still pretty expensive with trunk and slow to get large size from smaller plants like I have. I guess I'm starting to get the Trachy bug as even fortunei is not really that common here. You see a few scattered here and there. A friend of mine gave me a nice little waggie and a martianus which are definitely not found around here.

This is the center of the yard and I need something rare or unusual for this area....A. wrightii is not found very often and that is why I chose it for the area. It contrasts nicely with the big mule and big phoenix nearby. If I have to replace the tall C. alba it will also be with a Trachy of some sort. Anyway, I like the princeps idea....nice looking palm.

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stevethegator

Try t. martianus! Not because it looks it looks like paurotis but because it looks awesome in its own right!

Here's a pic I shamelessly stole from google images

post-3209-0-23137700-1393308399_thumb.jp

Edited by stevethegator

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redbeard917

I like Trachycarpus palms too, but you might want to look into how well they will do in your soil. Almost every one I've seen planted in sand around here has declined and died. (These would all be common T. fortunei). Oddly though, occasionally one makes it and looks good. Purely speculation, but maybe some people get lucky and stumble across a nematode-free location. If that is indeed the reason they don't do well here, there are things you can do about nematodes like planting near the foundation and/or adding compost/organic matter.

They do very well in Tallahassee's red clay and sometimes large specimens are even used commercially.

Phoenikakias, those are nice Chamaerops. Does that variety not sucker?

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Flow

You can use Chamaerops humilis var gracilis/arborescens for an identical visual effect created by Paurotis, provided that former is more cold tolerant than latter and you can find this cultivar in decent size.

attachicon.gifIMG_1700nv.jpgattachicon.gifIMG_1703nv.jpgattachicon.gifIMG_1704nv.jpg

Very true! When I saw a young paurotis for the first time I instantly thought it was a chamaerops.

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palm tree man

I have seen landscapers plant multiple T. Fortunei togther and then mechanically remove the fibers from the trunk. When you do

this, they do resemble Acoelorrhaphe wrightii. Maybe not a dead ringer but inexpensive and can give the same effect. They will

grow better in winter than in summer for you as well; I know mine seem to like our winters. This might not be an option though, an

old collector in Florida also recommended it to me years ago. T. Latisectus would be cool, but for something different Princeps

might be interesting with silvery undersides. Though can be tough to find however. Any of these would give a similar effect but

would honestly be much easier to prune though I love paurotis palms. Otherwise a C. Humilis variety would work well too.

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Phoenikakias

I like Trachycarpus palms too, but you might want to look into how well they will do in your soil. Almost every one I've seen planted in sand around here has declined and died. (These would all be common T. fortunei). Oddly though, occasionally one makes it and looks good. Purely speculation, but maybe some people get lucky and stumble across a nematode-free location. If that is indeed the reason they don't do well here, there are things you can do about nematodes like planting near the foundation and/or adding compost/organic matter.

They do very well in Tallahassee's red clay and sometimes large specimens are even used commercially.

Phoenikakias, those are nice Chamaerops. Does that variety not sucker?

Hmmm, suckering habit on Chamaerops and other palms as well is a very complex issue. So long I observe those particular specimens I have never seen a single one suckering. Besides there are already known, established cultivars in european horticulture the arborescens (non suckering) and the gracilis (gracile look) form. On the other hand it has never occured to me to grow a non suckering Chamaerops, even with a seedling bought as arborescens! In the rarest occasion that those specimens fruit, a friend of mine collected a single fruit, from which he managed to grow a new plant, which suckers, but cross pollination with other common specimens is very probable to have happened. Anyway I have managed to get a sucker from the above offspring, which suckers itself but in a very weaker manner than other Chamaerops forms and has retained the gracile trait (pic below with one sucker left, original stem is the right one).

post-6141-0-21469000-1393402755_thumb.jp

Besides I have a theory (only a theory), that suckering plants growing in harsh conditions (not necessarily cold climate but rather in a dry and poor soil), tend to sucker less concentrating their entire vigor on main stem. I base this theory on the fact that I grow a trunking Chamaerops in a pot for decades and when the root system outgrew pot's space it ceased suckering (it does not produce suckers any more and if one new sucker every now and then pops up it dies back fast), while main initial stem and oldest suckers still grow further and build gradually trunks (pic below)

post-6141-0-16133200-1393402423_thumb.jp

Same phenomen has been observed in the UK, where Chamaerops specimens tend to sucker considerably less that in southern Europe. This fits well to my theory, to the extent that weather there is cool and less energy is produced by the plant. If however main stem dies, you have to expect prolific production of suckers, as this may be a last attempt for survival of the plant generally.

Edited by Phoenikakias

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Alicehunter2000

I think your theory sounds entirely plausible as plants adapt to their conditions.Did I read correctly in that you said that you have successfully removed and grown a sucker?

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Phoenikakias

I think your theory sounds entirely plausible as plants adapt to their conditions.Did I read correctly in that you said that you have successfully removed and grown a sucker?

Yes, a sucker was sucessfully removed but whole plant was growing in pot, so we removed plant from pot and sawed off from surface to the bottom of the rootball the sucker. Nevertheless it took one year for the sucker to establish in the cold frame.

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Brahea Axel

As everyone knows I experienced a brutal winter. One of the palms that took the most damage was Acoelorrhaphe wrightii. Since it is likely that the tall trunks on this palm will not survive, I was looking for a Trachycarpus species that would look similar that could be planted in the same area.

I fully expect the A. wrightii to survive at the bottom (root zone), but it will be several years to get the trunks back to the size that they were. I figured if this happens again at least I could group some Trachies in there to give me something more than headless trunks to look at.

So what species looks the most like A. wrightii? and is cold hardy to 15 degrees F.?

That's a very simple question to answer. Trachycarpus oreophilus has the same leaf form and is self cleaning as well. I also agree with the other posts, you should be looking at trachycarpus across the board. It's a fabulous genus, super tropical looking and quite hardy with the exception of maybe latisectus. There are also different forms of trachycarpus fortunei with very different leaf forms. Look for trachycarpus "nainital" and trachycarpus "bulgaria". Plants Delights Nursery sells the various forms. Nainital is enormous, and bulgaria is thought to be a cross between wagnerianus and an ordinary fortunei, giving it a more stiff, upright look and larger leaves than wagerianus, adding up to the look of a coccothrinax.

Also, if you look carefully, you can shop around nurseries that carry a lot of trachys and find the ones that have full 360 degree circle leaves. Those actually look like licuala, especially if you grow them in the shade where they stretch a lot.

trachycarpus%20oreophilus,%20ruud,%20gol

8ef9a4.jpg

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