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Grasswing

Washingtonia dying suddenly

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Grasswing

Hello,

I have few years old Washingtonias - one filifera and two smaller robustas.

I placed them outside on a balcony in April and they grew with no problems at all, starting some new leaves. Two weeks ago, I noticed some rapid yellowing and it progressed really fast, now the palms are nearly gone. I don't have a clue why this happened - they were in the same conditions as before, well established in pots after winter. Other palms which I have on the balcony with them show no signs of similar damage, they grow just fine. Photos:

Comparison with Sabal minor in very similar conditions:

20180621_141250.thumb.jpg.b30ccabf9ca9c9

20180621_141300.thumb.jpg.f28539c02bb9de

20180621_141303.thumb.jpg.9649b92ab6cad620180405_141326.thumb.jpg.ab5d2ce4753463 Here is a picture from April before placing outside.

What can be the cause? Is there any way to save the palms? I've read some topics about wilt, but I have no clue if it is common in our conditions, and they are potted up so I can't imagine a way how they could contract this disease. I know that the potting mix isn't ideal at all, but I tried to manage the moisture really carefully and in my opinion the deterioration progressed too fast for a root rot. It affected literally only the three Washingtonias. 

Thanks for help!

Regards

Ondra 

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DoomsDave

@Grasswing, alas, I think your Washies are dead.

It's hard to say exactly what the cause is. I'd start by examining physical situation. I've had tough plants like that (and Washies are the toughest of the tough) because the soil didn't hold water and it was bone-dry, even though I watered regularly. That said, it looks like two of your plants were well-watered.

Pull them out of the soil, and see what the roots are like. Maybe they rotted?

I'm curious to know what happened, too.

(Hope the seeds I sent you grow!)

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Palm Tree Jim

Agree with Dave on this.

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Pal Meir

I guess also too little water. Look at the tub on the pic below, it was always filled with water during the warmer seasons.

5b2bb35eecfa1_Washingtonia1989-09-07.thu

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Nakheel1412

Potted + enough heat (15ºC) to start vigourous growth + dry medium, and Washingtonias will die of thirst, CRAZY FAST, in a matter of hours if the heat is intense ;

In my experience, other palms like S. romanzoffiana and P. canariensis will tolerate quite long periods of drought when potted (several days to weeks depending on how hot and wet the climate is), even at smaller stages, but in those same conditions Washingtonias simply do not tolerate drought, and will die in hours/days;

Since there is some green left on the spear, you might be able to save them by keeping them inside + giving them lots of water ?

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Kris

Do you have the habit of moistening the washy leaves with hand held misting pump,then it must be avoided.Since most of the desert plants/Palms hate their leaves cleaned using ground water or municipal tap water. I have lost a few washy filiferas doing so.

Their crown area must never be misted.They do love their feet wet in hot summers.

Love,

Kris.

 

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Grasswing

Thank you all for fast and helpful advice! Appreciate it!

I was unaware how sensitive to drought Washingtonias are, I thought that they are well adapted to dry conditions from their original habitat. Palmtalk opened my eyes once again.

I picked up one of the smaller Washingtonias from the pot (it was easier to do than with the big one) as Dave suggested and the roots don't show any signs of rot as I thought, but they seem to be a bit drier. I assume that you are all right about the drought being the reason of this fast deterioration.

20180621_175539.thumb.jpg.148c7e371ffeae

I've cut the dead fronds off and gave them a good watering, now lets see how they will respond. Maybe it isn't that late!

20180621_180128.thumb.jpg.7bea4f5e462a34

@Kris thanks for the tip but I don't mist these palms at all, but definitely good to know! :) 

Regards,

Ondra

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DoomsDave

@Grasswingkeep us apprized!

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Pal Meir

If you can find some sort of (weathered) granite grus in the forests of your neighborhood I would use it for Washis and most Phoenix spp etc.; below a pic of a Jubaea seedling in 100% granite grus:

5b2bf34d966c4_Jubaea1980N08-0418.thumb.j

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Grasswing
21 minutes ago, Pal Meir said:

If you can find some sort of (weathered) granite grus in the forests of your neighborhood I would use it for Washis and most Phoenix spp etc.; below a pic of a Jubaea seedling in 100% granite grus:

5b2bf34d966c4_Jubaea1980N08-0418.thumb.j

It looks great! Do you have any recent image of this Jubaea?

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Pal Meir
1 hour ago, Grasswing said:

It looks great! Do you have any recent image of this Jubaea?

In the 1980s I had toooooo many palms in a place much too small (and also too dark), so all the Jubaeas didn’t get enough direct sun it needs so much and eventually died during a winter in the middle of the 1980s. :violin: The only later photo I could find is here:

http://www.palmtalk.org/forum/index.php?/topic/46393-%C2%BBbefore-after%C2%AB-pix-of-potted-palms/&page=4

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jimmyt

Give those palms some tender loving care.  Keep them out of the heat, and blazing sun, and make sure the soil gets "wet" when you water them.  Let them dry just a bit in summer then water again.  None of the photos look as if they have any sort of "rot".  They look like some of my smaller potted palms that get too hot, dry and neglected in the summer time in the outdoors.  There is hope for those palms-----don't give up yet.

jimmyt

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TexasColdHardyPalms

Those arent dead.   Water them some more. 

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Jim in Los Altos
9 hours ago, Grasswing said:

Thank you all for fast and helpful advice! Appreciate it!

I was unaware how sensitive to drought Washingtonias are, I thought that they are well adapted to dry conditions from their original habitat. Palmtalk opened my eyes once again.

I picked up one of the smaller Washingtonias from the pot (it was easier to do than with the big one) as Dave suggested and the roots don't show any signs of rot as I thought, but they seem to be a bit drier. I assume that you are all right about the drought being the reason of this fast deterioration.

20180621_175539.thumb.jpg.148c7e371ffeae

I've cut the dead fronds off and gave them a good watering, now lets see how they will respond. Maybe it isn't that late!

20180621_180128.thumb.jpg.7bea4f5e462a34

@Kris thanks for the tip but I don't mist these palms at all, but definitely good to know! :) 

Regards,

Ondra

Washingtonia are extremely drought tolerant when well established in the ground but nearly no palm in a pot is drought tolerant. Always make sure the soil is thoroughly watered and water often during heat spells, Never let the soil completely dry out between waterings. 

Edited by Jim in Los Altos
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aztropic

Yes. Those palms died back due to lack of moisture.Probably will recover with consistent moisture in the future.One thing you may not have considered...If those 2 small black pots received any DIRECT SUNSHINE,there is a very good chance they overheated the roots and caused the soil to dry quicker than you realized.Paint the pots white or shade the pot area with something to block direct sun.

 

aztropic

Mesa,Arizona

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DoomsDave

It will be a pleasure to eat my earlier words! (Kung pao style, with brown rice.)

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Grasswing
1 hour ago, DoomsDave said:

It will be a pleasure to eat my earlier words! (Kung pao style, with brown rice.)

Don't worry Dave. I was so scared of overwatering them and in the end it was the complete opposite that was killing these poor plants. I feel stupid that I didn't realize that first and thought about something more complicated. :indifferent:

Thank you all for help again!

Regards

Ondra

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Grasswing

Hello everyone,

I am posting an update on my Washies as @DoomsDave wanted. It is evident that most of you were correct and the reason of this dying state was a lack of water. What a beginners mistake.:wacko: :rolleyes: I watered them thoroughly and now I pay more attention to their water needs.

Here they are after almost 3 weeks, new spears are appearing!

20180709_141340.thumb.jpg.97fcee863bf39020180709_141348.thumb.jpg.2a8e6e11792f74

Thank you all for help once again!

Ondra

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Kris

Very happy to see its recovering :greenthumb: And thanks for the Update !

Love,

Kris.

 

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