As I am presently living in Nashville, I wanted to get the scoop on palms in the area. On a FB palm group (NAPA I believe) I found a guy who lived in Henderson (20 minutes north of East Nashville) Tennessee who offered to show me some of the palms in the area. I was very surprised that there were any unprotected palms besides Needles and Sabal minor, and was more surprised at how many I saw in a relatively small area. Ill add he knew of more but It had gotten late, and we plan on doing another palm "hunt" in the future.
First this large windmill palm near Old Hickory Lake. According to the owner he bought two windmill palms about 15 - 17 years ago (this being one) while in Orlando around a 5 gallon size after asking about palms to grow in cold hardy climates. Sadly the other one died (visible in photo) a few years ago after a winter, it simply declined and died. The guy who was showing me around was pretty sure it wasn't cold damage as it was apparently a mild winter. This palm has never been protected, and the trunk was about 17 feet tall.
Notice all these volunteers too.
he also had a smaller one he planted around 8 years ago. very fat trunk. More volunteers too.
Few other Windmills around the area. This one on a property right on the lake.
Two more by a pool.
The guy who I went with also had a very impressive garden. He had some non palms that were still impressive But i will add those at the bottom of this post.
Sabal palmetto, never protected, under a small roof area, planted 15 years ago.
Another palmetto, this one's first winter. Not bad damage considering this winter was colder then most, apparently duration wise.
Needle clump around 20 years old.
Not sure the age on this one.
Lots of nice Sabal Minor, some of these he believes aren't fully sabal because they have outgrown some other Sabal Minor he planted much earlier. Either way he has around 20 - 25 planted around and had a literal bucket full of fresh seeds.
These some of the self ID'd Lousiana, sold as Minor. He also said these would sometimes get very mild burn while the full minor didn't. All were purchased as minor.
One in back right is Sabal Birmingham. Two others are minor.
These are apparently full Sabal Minor. These were older then the others.
Windmills too, planted around 8 years ago dont fully remember. None of these palms have ever been protected I should add.
Back near the lake, We also stopped at a place with two Sabal Palmetto palms. He apparently had never stopped here to ask so we did. The owner said he dug up the "palm" in Jacksonville around 15 years ago. He did not think It was a palmetto, though when we looked we decided it was, and told him as such. apparently its slower then usual growth rate is due to the owner having a habit of cutting off all fronds with noticeable burn, and ice damage. We also figured he thought it was a single palm and probably dug up several of them in the same place at once. Also never protected.
At the Henderson Memorial park, apparently there used to be a Sabal Minor and Birmingham (the latter donated by my "guide"). The Birmingham died somehow, and the Minor was pulled out after over a decade to put in a trash can (yeah I know). But down the peninsula, into the woods a little, were many Sabal Minor naturalizing littering the ground, near some swampy areas. There was easily over 100 mixed in spread out over 100/100 feet
There were some other houses we passed by with palms, he knew a person who owned this place, and apparently this a Sabal Birmingham. No other palms on the property
Another windmill. Some of the plants looked like they had been wrapped including this, so we assume some fronds were cooked by Christmas lights. He intends to going back to warn them about it.
also a needle at the same place.
Another home with large Sabal Minor.
They also had a needle and a smaller Minor too.
Now for some of his other rare non palms. Yucca aloifolia for starters. This area really seems like a 7b despite its zone designation.
Sago Cycads, been there at least 5 years, come back every year as perenials. both have green here,
Two live oaks laden with Spanish Moss.
Some kind of Eucalyptus I forgot which one.
I ended up getting one of the Large Windmill palms offspring while we visited. I have since cleaned it and potted it better, this was the only photo I have.
Currently 5f outside with a low of 1 tonight and -15f windchill. Palm is chilly but I’m able to keep the air temps in the box above 20f and the ground is unfrozen. Coldest weather since trying my winter methods.
P.s. first 2 pictures from last year as I am keeping box sealed
By Brad Mondel
After all of these years I finally got to buy a house with over half an acre and now almost all of the palms are planted.
I am in zone 8a South Carolina above the fall line!
It is a work in progress so don't judge.
By Pal Meir
The »Son of Palermo« is already 34 yr old, the T Wagner only 17:
For my next post, I want to highlight some of the palms that I've come across in the Cincinnati suburbs outside of the ones in my yard. The first picture is of a windmill palm (trachycapus fortunei) on the eastern side of town. According to the grower, this specimen has endured three winters in the ground with minimal protective measures. His protection for this palm is only a heating cable around the trunk and a frost cloth. This picture was taken in late spring, 2019. It had completely defoliated during January,2019 when temps did drop below zero. The palm started to rebound very quickly. The second picture is the same palm this spring shared to me by the grower with the heating cable still on the trunk and a fully recovered crown.
The next several pictures are from a grower just a stones' throw away from me in the northern Cincinnati suburbs. This grower has some truly wonderful exotics that most nursery staff would say are a waste of time and money in his yard that have proven to be as reliable as tulips simply from protection for wind, placing in the sunniest spots, and extra mulch. The first of these pictures from his yard is a rare true trachycarpus takil that he raised for seed. It has also been in the ground for three years and is only protected by being covered with a mound of straw, no added heat. The other pictures are winter time pictures of his needle palm and sabal minor, He unlike me, does take some protective measures. His protective measures are just covering the trunk of the plant with straw while leaving all leaves exposed. these needle palms and sabal minor have been in the ground since 2006 and laughed off the vortex years.