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jfrye01@live.com

Will 32F (0 Celsius) kill potted palms?

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jfrye01@live.com

Well, since it's warm, and supposed to stay that way, I moved my Trachy and Pindo outside...Forecast showed the lows to be at least 35F-50F for the next several days. Anyway, NWS updated the forecast for tomorrow night, that 35 is now a 32...my question is, will this hurt my potted plants? they are on the patio on the Northeast side of my house...I wouldn't imagine 32 would do much damage, but I do remember reading freezing temperatures are much more hurtful to potted plants...I don't want to lug these big heavy guys back inside unless I have to...

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Hammer

The real important factor is how long will they be exposed to the freezing temps.

My guess is they will be fine. But no one can judge for you how risk averse you are.

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jfrye01@live.com

Ha...true;) I'll leave them out...

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JakeK

Probably not. When I had a trachy in a pot it saw temps down into the mid-20's for a couple of nights without any noticeable damage. I wouldn't test too much lower than that though.

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palm tree man

Honestly, I have accidently left a bottle palm out and it was exposed for freezing temps for a short period of time. Now I brought it in first thing in the morning, but it was exposed regardless. It depends upon your duration of freezing or below freezing temps. If it is possible for water to form crystals and to freeze it can harm some palms that are already not freeze hardy. Generally speaking a palm in a pot is not as hardy as a palm in the ground, but you can grow some pretty cool palms in pots and then move them to the garage when things get artic or antartic for our friends in the southern hemisphere. As a rule, I bring in all potted tender plants not just palms when the forecast is for around 27 degrees and I always do if they predict sleet or ice or any other horrible thing that only belongs in North Canada or Siberia. A good test is to place a bucket of water outside; if the bucket of water has ice on top of it then you should bring tender plants indoors. Have fun and grow all sorts of awesome palms that people tell you you should not grow, but keep them in pots and keep them safe. I had a friend in Michigan that would plant pots in the ground during warm months and bring them in during the winter. This is a really cool trick and will allow you to grow anything you really want to as long as you know its limits.

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jfrye01@live.com

Honestly, I have accidently left a bottle palm out and it was exposed for freezing temps for a short period of time. Now I brought it in first thing in the morning, but it was exposed regardless. It depends upon your duration of freezing or below freezing temps. If it is possible for water to form crystals and to freeze it can harm some palms that are already not freeze hardy. Generally speaking a palm in a pot is not as hardy as a palm in the ground, but you can grow some pretty cool palms in pots and then move them to the garage when things get artic or antartic for our friends in the southern hemisphere. As a rule, I bring in all potted tender plants not just palms when the forecast is for around 27 degrees and I always do if they predict sleet or ice or any other horrible thing that only belongs in North Canada or Siberia. A good test is to place a bucket of water outside; if the bucket of water has ice on top of it then you should bring tender plants indoors. Have fun and grow all sorts of awesome palms that people tell you you should not grow, but keep them in pots and keep them safe. I had a friend in Michigan that would plant pots in the ground during warm months and bring them in during the winter. This is a really cool trick and will allow you to grow anything you really want to as long as you know its limits.

That's a really good idea, I've actually thought about doing just that with a coco...planting it in a 15 or 20 gallon pot, then digging it up before first frost....Crazy? Maybe a little...but worth a shot IMO;)

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edbrown_III

I have Butias out in FLorida North. Also otheres Cham. radicalis, S. romanzoffian um and yungensis down to 20s and maybe 19F. Does nt seem to bother them . This part of Fl we can get late freezes after periods in the 80s-- I just havent noticed any graphic foliage problems just need to watered or better layed on their sides. concrete might have some spott cold that is several degrees lowere -- some of these I have layed a blanket on the pot to insulate.

I wouldnt expect any problms with the Pindo s or Trachy based upon North FL experience.

Best regards

Ed

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Brahea Axel

Honestly, I have accidently left a bottle palm out and it was exposed for freezing temps for a short period of time. Now I brought it in first thing in the morning, but it was exposed regardless. It depends upon your duration of freezing or below freezing temps. If it is possible for water to form crystals and to freeze it can harm some palms that are already not freeze hardy. Generally speaking a palm in a pot is not as hardy as a palm in the ground, but you can grow some pretty cool palms in pots and then move them to the garage when things get artic or antartic for our friends in the southern hemisphere. As a rule, I bring in all potted tender plants not just palms when the forecast is for around 27 degrees and I always do if they predict sleet or ice or any other horrible thing that only belongs in North Canada or Siberia. A good test is to place a bucket of water outside; if the bucket of water has ice on top of it then you should bring tender plants indoors. Have fun and grow all sorts of awesome palms that people tell you you should not grow, but keep them in pots and keep them safe. I had a friend in Michigan that would plant pots in the ground during warm months and bring them in during the winter. This is a really cool trick and will allow you to grow anything you really want to as long as you know its limits.

That's a really good idea, I've actually thought about doing just that with a coco...planting it in a 15 or 20 gallon pot, then digging it up before first frost....Crazy? Maybe a little...but worth a shot IMO;)

Wow, from trachy to a coco in less than 6 months, I'd say the palm obsession disease is moving through you pretty fast. :)Before you get too confident and start planting coco palms in Kansas, you might want to wait and see how you do with the trachy and butia.

You should take a look at the needle palm thread. Here's a needle palm, hardy to the single digits, but it was kept indoors all Winter. Then it was put outside, but instead of 32F, it dropped to 16F. That needle palm now has spear pull. Palms and all plants need proper hardening before they're exposed to the elements.

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Palm crazy

You can always put a blanket over the plant if that makes you feel better, but at 32F you’ll have nothing to worry about as long as the daytime is above freezing. Its almost growing season.

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jfrye01@live.com

Woke up this morning and checked my thermometer, it is currently 29F, and the minimum temperature was 25F here:( All my palms (Butia, trachy, and Sabal texana) were outside all night...I hope and pray they're ok, that's a lot of money worth of palms...just goes to show we can't trust the forecasts! :(

It was possibly much colder where my Texas sabal was, it was covered in frost and is now covered with blotchy dark green spots...I brought it in the house, but I'm sure the damage is done...I think I'm gonna be sick...I just bought the thing yesterday, and it was beautiful:( The Two of the butia's fronds are dead, including one of the new spears coming up, the other (older) spears are still colored, but yellow...the trachy shows no damage so far, other than some of those same green spots that are on the sabal on the tips of its fronds.

Edited by jfrye01@live.com

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jfrye01@live.com

6 hours later, Sabal texana is still blue/green...doesn't look damaged, but time will tell...dark green spots have disappeared.

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Hammer

It will be some time that passes before you will be able to tell if and how much damage has occurred.

I think Axel's advice is very good. Until you get a feel for your palms along with the work and cost to keep them alive through a winter outside, I would ease into it. I'm in a solid z10a (z11 this winter) and I have several plants I still baby and am trying to learn before I try them in the ground.

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jfrye01@live.com

It will be some time that passes before you will be able to tell if and how much damage has occurred.

I think Axel's advice is very good. Until you get a feel for your palms along with the work and cost to keep them alive through a winter outside, I would ease into it. I'm in a solid z10a (z11 this winter) and I have several plants I still baby and am trying to learn before I try them in the ground.

Yeah, I'm pretty sure the Butia is gonna pull...it has one spear that is completely brown, and all the rest but one are yellow...one green spear left.. Some existing fronds are ok so far, Trachy is fine, didn't even change color. Sabal texana has some brown tips, about an inch on each tip. How much time will need to pass before I know? I was planning on planting these palms today, but should I change my mind now?

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jfrye01@live.com

Here's some pictures:

None of the spears pulled.

Butia as of right now:

post-9451-0-94035600-1396120981_thumb.jp

Up close:

post-9451-0-35117600-1396121007_thumb.jp

Brown spear:

post-9451-0-72558700-1396121018_thumb.jp

Sabal texana:

post-9451-0-80033300-1396121026_thumb.jp

Edit: This is also my last palm. This little incident has snapped me back to reality...I AM in zone 6, therefore, I am limited...and even though we've never had a freeze this late in my lifetime, it can and does happpen...So from now on, I'll stick to my Trachies, Butias, Sabals and sabal minors. Lol

Edited by jfrye01@live.com

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willials

Honestly, I would be very surprised at a spear pull on a Butia from 25F. One possible mistake you may have made here though (don't worry, I have made many mistakes in growing palms) is bringing a Butia from a warm indoor environment to outside too early in the year. The shock of going from a 70F house to 25F in one day might be too extreme for that variety. Axel and others on here know a lot more than I do about this, but I could see that as being one possibility. For example, I have a Butia that has been outside since last May and survived temps well into the teens this Winter (several nights at 18F with daytime highs below freezing) and it's in a pot, not in the ground. It looks great and has almost zero leaf damage/burn. Mine is about the same size as yours in the picture, maybe a year or two more mature than yours. So that's why I'm puzzled as to yours having that amount of damage after only 1 night at 25F. What I am saying here is it may have been the extremity in temperature change (drop) rather than the actual temperature that caused the damage. I'd be curious as to what others with more experience would say about this.

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jfrye01@live.com

Honestly, I would be very surprised at a spear pull on a Butia from 25F. One possible mistake you may have made here though (don't worry, I have made many mistakes in growing palms) is bringing a Butia from a warm indoor environment to outside too early in the year. The shock of going from a 70F house to 25F in one day might be too extreme for that variety. Axel and others on here know a lot more than I do about this, but I could see that as being one possibility. For example, I have a Butia that has been outside since last May and survived temps well into the teens this Winter (several nights at 18F with daytime highs below freezing) and it's in a pot, not in the ground. It looks great and has almost zero leaf damage/burn. Mine is about the same size as yours in the picture, maybe a year or two more mature than yours. So that's why I'm puzzled as to yours having that amount of damage after only 1 night at 25F. What I am saying here is it may have been the extremity in temperature change (drop) rather than the actual temperature that caused the damage. I'd be curious as to what others with more experience would say about this.

It also has a fungal infection on many fronds...I have treated with fungicide and it doesn't seem to be doing anything, in fact, when I bought it, the guy sold it to me for $80 instead of the normal $150 because it didn't look so good then either...I've had it outside for a couple days now, night before last, it dropped to 30F and didn't hurt it. However, it looked worse this morning than it did yesterday. Oh well, if it dies, I'll get another one...I found another nursery in Dallas that sells much larger ones for $100...I'm just hoping my Sabal doesn't croak in a few days...I'm not giving the Trachy attention because it didn't even notice the cold:P Or the frost accumulation on its fronds:P

Edited by jfrye01@live.com

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willials

Ok, that makes a lot more sense then. All bets are off when it comes to diseased palms. I have had those too and in a super wet environment like Seattle we are always contending with that. I find it's much easier to keep a palm from getting a disease generally than to keep it alive after it has one.

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jfrye01@live.com

Ok, that makes a lot more sense then. All bets are off when it comes to diseased palms. I have had those too and in a super wet environment like Seattle we are always contending with that. I find it's much easier to keep a palm from getting a disease generally than to keep it alive after it has one.

Yeah, the fronds are covered with brown spots...I'm also concerned because one of the leaflets on my Sabal has some brown spots and is slightly yellow, but it could just be from cold damage.

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Hammer

I would pour some hydrogen peroxide down the crowns of your palms. The one looks like something is going on down there. Hitting all of them isn't a bad idea.

Others with more experience may differ, but I would hold off planting out the palms. If they've been traumatized better off letting them "rest" a little and letting the soil warm before stressing them again.

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jfrye01@live.com

Good idea, I sprayed neem oil insecticide/fungicide on the Sabal because I found insects on it, but peroxide would probably be better.

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Brahea Axel

I tried to warn you, that's why I told you about the needle palm. You need to get to know your microclimate first.

I've seen yellow spear emerge from butia before, they usually green up.

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jfrye01@live.com

I tried to warn you, that's why I told you about the needle palm. You need to get to know your microclimate first.

I've seen yellow spear emerge from butia before, they usually green up.

Yeah I know:/ However, I had two remote thermometers outside, and the overall trend seemed to show 3-4 degrees higher than forecast around here, until night before last. I checked my trachy, and all its fronds are now folded up tight...soil seemed dry so I watered it, hopefully they'll open soon. Two newest fronds look fine, though. Sabal still looks fine, Some of the yellowing on the butia has already greened back up. I poured peroxide in the crowns just to be safe.

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jfrye01@live.com

Honestly, I'm glad this happened, because it snapped me back to reality...I was out in palm la la land, thinking about growing zone 9 palms here, and then nature was like "Nope, map may say zone 7 but you sir are zone 6"...now I realize that while I'm pretty limited, there still is a lot I can do with Trachycarpus, Sabals, and Rhapidophyllum. Oh and since I already had two planted washies, Washingtonia filibusta. Haha

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willials

Good call. The washies may be a stretch there, but I say if you can get new palms to try without shelling out too much money, then it's always worth a try. I have a washie that seemed to do ok here in Seattle through a pretty tough Winter, but all the growers in my area have assured me that it will die by the end of next Winter. I paid $15 for it at home depot, so won't be disappointed at all if it croaks. Some things you just have to prove to yourself before saying that a particular species won't grow in your area/microclimate. Best of luck with the Sabals, Windmills, and Butia. Sounds like your Butia will pull through for now, but a slower adjustment to the outside conditions may harden it off better than introducing it to the outside temps too early in the year.

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jfrye01@live.com

Good call. The washies may be a stretch there, but I say if you can get new palms to try without shelling out too much money, then it's always worth a try. I have a washie that seemed to do ok here in Seattle through a pretty tough Winter, but all the growers in my area have assured me that it will die by the end of next Winter. I paid $15 for it at home depot, so won't be disappointed at all if it croaks. Some things you just have to prove to yourself before saying that a particular species won't grow in your area/microclimate. Best of luck with the Sabals, Windmills, and Butia. Sounds like your Butia will pull through for now, but a slower adjustment to the outside conditions may harden it off better than introducing it to the outside temps too early in the year.

Thanks! My sabal is starting to show some yellowing and brown spots on two of the leaflets on one frond, does this sound like cold damage to anyone? And don't worry, I'm not gonna let this little setback keep me from experimenting with (cheap) plants;)

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PalmatierMeg

You should never entirely trust any weather forecast that makes the difference between life and death for your palms. Anytime lows may get remotely close to that line for me I act, whether to cover or move potted palms. I can't begin to count how many times a forecast went wrong.

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jfrye01@live.com

Pictures of 6:45 P.M. Today:

Trachy

post-9451-0-10183300-1396223850_thumb.jp

Trachy up close, some folded fronds, tip damage

post-9451-0-45686900-1396223872_thumb.jp

Butia

post-9451-0-14378500-1396223892_thumb.jp

Sabal

Sabal up close, some yellowing and brown spots

post-9451-0-55243500-1396223931_thumb.jp

No spears pulled yet, feeling more optimistic. Lol

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willials

Well, I don't know very much about Sabals, not having any growing experience here with them. Our mild weather doesn't allow Sabals to grow quickly here (they like the heat of the South much better). However, your Trachy looks just fine. Actually, that's quite a nice specimen for a potted palm of that age I think. I have more folded fronds on mine that has been in the ground for 2 years, so folded fronds can be quite normal for T. Fortunei. I have a theory that the more sun they get when young, the firmer the fronds are, but that's just my opinion. It may have more to do with the specific variety/genetics, etc.

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jfrye01@live.com

Well, I don't know very much about Sabals, not having any growing experience here with them. Our mild weather doesn't allow Sabals to grow quickly here (they like the heat of the South much better). However, your Trachy looks just fine. Actually, that's quite a nice specimen for a potted palm of that age I think. I have more folded fronds on mine that has been in the ground for 2 years, so folded fronds can be quite normal for T. Fortunei. I have a theory that the more sun they get when young, the firmer the fronds are, but that's just my opinion. It may have more to do with the specific variety/genetics, etc.

I'm almost wondering if mine has a little Waggie in it, I had it in the front yard yesterday and it was hit by some 20 mph winds, and the fronds weren't torn all up like I expected...

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palm tree man

A quick swing in temp can be more damaging to a butia than a longer duration of cold. They are tough palms though and usually survive a spear pull fairly well. Most times all that you lose is the spear and then new growth emerges before the end of the growing season. These reasons among many others is why butia hybrids are so in demand. Butia seems to be able to take adverse conditions and then eventually overcome them; there are not many other pinnate palms that can do what a butia can. Jubaea Chilensis is also tough but cannot handle humidity and heat as well and is much slower growing. A well grown wine palm is really an amazing site though.

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