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The7thLegend

North Florida Queen Palms, zone 9a expanding

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The7thLegend

Posting this topic in Cold Hardy since it's about northerly zone expansion.  Depending what cold hardiness zone map you refer to, the Lake City, north Florida area would mostly be an 8b or barely 9a zone.  Lake City is about 30 miles north of Gainesville, FL.  Easily found on the map where I10 & I75 intersect... that's pretty darn north Florida.  Looking around the area I was surprised to find as many Queen Palms thriving.  As a reference, we all know how bad the 2010 winter was and the 2018 winter had temps that remained below freezing for hours!  In addition, this area experienced sleet (but no actual snow fall) this past winter.  I captured some pics of Queen Palms, some plenty mature, doing well and/or thriving in this area!  I know these weren't protected palms either.  Could be zone 9a is moving further north.  Here's a few pics.

P_08.jpg

P_11.jpg

P_14.jpg

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Estlander
2 hours ago, The7thLegend said:

Could be zone 9a is moving further north. 

It would appear so.  In my 9A area most Queens had no or very minimal damage as well this winter. 

Even a young unestablished 10 ft. tall one in my yard had no damage. My neighbor’s yard has a big one that’s been there over 11 years.  It’s doing great and hasn’t been killed yet.

Although I think we North Floridians will get a dose of reality sooner or later.

I mean, look what happened in New Orleans and Houston (both 9A) this winter. NOLA and Houston saw 19F which killed most of the Queens there. 19F is something both cities hadn’t seen in many years. 

 

Edited by Estlander
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bubba

Have to agree. Spent time this summer at Amelia Island and saw many very mature and large thriving Queen Palms. Same in Gainesville, where they are all over. Never would have believed Lake City but it seems this Syagrus is headed to Georgia and perhaps beyond!

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The7thLegend

Here's a few more from Lake City.

P_13.jpg

P_03.jpg

P_12.jpg

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The7thLegend

This one I took in Alachua at the 441/I75 exit.  The Queen was protected by northerly winds by the Dunkin Donuts.  

P_01.jpg

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The7thLegend

Washingtonia's are plentiful.  Spotted a couple Mules.  Was surprised to see Robellini's in the area though.   

P_02.jpg

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Laaz

The two at the docs house here in Charleston survived our brutal winter last year & also the one on Folly beach is doing well.

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Matthew92

I believe the main reasons we are seeing them farther north is:

#1- MUCH warmer than usual winters in the last 10 years (sans 2010-11)

#2 People finding and more widely using forms of S. romanzoffiana that are more cold hardy

I still hope to find a S. romanzoffiana that could be mostly 8b hardy for the FL Panhandle (not just the immediate coastal areas). As I'm living in Orlando currently, I have been seeking out queen palm survivors of the 1980's freezes which were upper teens in this area. I've seen a few, but unfortunately all but one have been in people's backyards (as I'm also trying to get seeds).

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Xenon
On 9/6/2018, 8:38:35, Estlander said:

Houston saw 19F which killed most of the Queens there. 19F is something both cities hadn’t seen in many years. 

 

There are plenty of queens still around in Houston. Many large P. roebelenii survived as well. I don't know about NOLA, but I doubt all (or even most) of the queens there died either. But yes, last winter was brutal. First time I can remember where protected pockets (usually 9b/10a) of Houston received almost no moderation from the heat island effect. 

Edited by Xenon
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Estlander
9 hours ago, Xenon said:

There are plenty of queens still around in Houston. Many large P. roebelenii survived as well. I don't know about NOLA, but I doubt all (or even most) of the queens there died either. But yes, last winter was brutal. First time I can remember where protected pockets (usually 9b/10a) of Houston received almost no moderation from the heat island effect. 

That’s good to hear should my area experience similar temps. one day. 19F is borderline for Queens.  At that temp. individual genetics of the palm come into play. So yes, I’m sure there are survivors too. 

Also, I’m pretty sure there were areas, both in NOLA and Houston, that stayed above 19F,..... say, 20-21F. That’s very survivable for Queens. 

But I’m very surprised any P. Roebelenii survived there without some kind of protection. Anything below 24-25F is asking for trouble with those. 

 

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Mr.SamuraiSword
On 9/14/2018, 8:41:46, Opal92 said:

I believe the main reasons we are seeing them farther north is:

#1- MUCH warmer than usual winters in the last 10 years (sans 2010-11)

#2 People finding and more widely using forms of S. romanzoffiana that are more cold hardy

I still hope to find a S. romanzoffiana that could be mostly 8b hardy for the FL Panhandle (not just the immediate coastal areas). As I'm living in Orlando currently, I have been seeking out queen palm survivors of the 1980's freezes which were upper teens in this area. I've seen a few, but unfortunately all but one have been in people's backyards (as I'm also trying to get seeds).

theres one in the orlando botanical garden that is pre 1989 

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The7thLegend

Hard to believe the devastation from Houston to Texas but Mother Nature has a way of handing out reality checks when you least expect it.  Gainesville to Lake City is as inland FL you can get and not near the coast or any major body of water, so a little surprising to me.

Edited by The7thLegend

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Laaz

Still pretty beat up, but this is another in Folly beach.

2cyfzus.jpg

15ckh8n.jpg

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TexasColdHardyPalms

I just drove down through south LA and back up through new orleans. 4 out of every 10 queens that we saw in NO from the interstate was dead. Even saw several dead robusta as well. There were several dead robusta in Lafayette and almost 100% queen mortality all the way down to franklin.  

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PalmTreeDude

There is a tall and old Queen Palm at the Salty Dog Cafe on Hilton Head Island, S.C. I saw it two years In a row and it looked good both times. I wonder how it fared this winter. Hilton Head Island is considered a zone 8b on the USDA zone maps but just barely. I am sure most winters there are 9a. It has a really good climate, you can find all kinds of things growing there you would not except to see. 

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Laaz

Hilton Hesd is 9a & many years 9b.

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JLeVert

There is a large Queen (Uruguay strain) in Saint Marys, GA that went through 20F with no damage at all.  I have a couple of seedlings (12' tall) in Augusta, GA that I am going to try out in the ground to see just how low they can take it.  I might protect one and let the other one duke it out on its own.

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bubba

Amazing shots of mature, thriving and fruiting Syagrus r. in Lake City. That Charleston garden is insane. Sad to hear about those Queens in NO that you see all over the place driving from the airport. They really seemed well established and impermeable. Seems like Hilton Head should have Queens but I cannot recall seeing any.

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Laaz
22 hours ago, JLeVert said:

There is a large Queen (Uruguay strain) in Saint Marys, GA that went through 20F with no damage at all.  I have a couple of seedlings (12' tall) in Augusta, GA that I am going to try out in the ground to see just how low they can take it.  I might protect one and let the other one duke it out on its own.

I have two of these from Tom as well. They went through the 16F we had last winter & both had spear pull. They are still quite small, but both recovered & are doing well. They had no protection from the freezing rain & snow.

 

p.s. I was down to Ned's in Port Royal Saturday, he said to say hello.

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JLeVert

Good to know about the Queens.  The two I have are big with 10" trunks  

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pin38
On 9/18/2018, 7:45:04, TexasColdHardyPalms said:

I just drove down through south LA and back up through new orleans. 4 out of every 10 queens that we saw in NO from the interstate was dead. Even saw several dead robusta as well. There were several dead robusta in Lafayette and almost 100% queen mortality all the way down to franklin.  

That's too bad. I was in NOLA last summer and remember thinking how great the queens looked there with all their rain, heat and humidity. 

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Alicehunter2000

I think we are starting to witness more cold variety within the Queen populations. The weak are being weeded out.

 

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Zeeth
On 9/27/2018, 3:37:07, pin38 said:

That's too bad. I was in NOLA last summer and remember thinking how great the queens looked there with all their rain, heat and humidity. 

I'm in NOLA for the month and the ones within the city look pretty good. I wonder if the damage that he saw was caused by something else, or if the ones within the city were spared from the cold due to the heat-island.

I see these queens every day and they look just as good now as in the google street-view image:

https://goo.gl/uC8E4Z 

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pin38
47 minutes ago, Zeeth said:

I'm in NOLA for the month and the ones within the city look pretty good. I wonder if the damage that he saw was caused by something else, or if the ones within the city were spared from the cold due to the heat-island.

I see these queens every day and they look just as good now as in the google street-view image:

https://goo.gl/uC8E4Z 

That would make since, I've read much of the city proper is rated 9b while most of the suburbs are 9a. I think the urban heat island, river and lake Pontchartrain all contribute to that. 

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ruskinPalms

I do love well grown queen palms (a rarity around where I live due to them not getting fertilized). I’m not sure why I don’t have a bunch planted as a cold hardy palm canopy. I guess the biggest deterrent for me is that they are not self cleaning and they do get massive relatively fast which requires hiring someone to come trim them. 

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Laaz
On 9/25/2018, 7:16:33, JLeVert said:

Good to know about the Queens.  The two I have are big with 10" trunks  

In containers?  :blink:

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Sabal_Louisiana

I was in New Orleans this weekend and was encouraged by the health of the palms I saw. Lots of flourishing Queens, Washingtonias, Livistonias, Dates etc.

I even saw some Queens alive in Baton Rouge and had to wonder if they are recent plantings.

But yea, suburban/outlying  areas of NO had some mortality of Queens. Funny how a row of them might have one dead and another next to it recovering nicely.

 

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GaDawg
On 9/23/2018, 1:22:39, JLeVert said:

There is a large Queen (Uruguay strain) in Saint Marys, GA that went through 20F with no damage at all.  I have a couple of seedlings (12' tall) in Augusta, GA that I am going to try out in the ground to see just how low they can take it.  I might protect one and let the other one duke it out on its own.

Which Queen in Saint Mary's? Are they by the interstate? 

 

There are quite a few in Brunswick and some in Waycross that pulled through 2017 winter storm quite well. Even my smaller Queen did great, and I live in between Brunswick and Waycross. 

I might be wrong, but I believe 8b on the southern coast of Georgia and Maclenny is a warmer, milder 8b in the panhandle of Florida. 

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JLeVert

The Uruguayan Queen is in a neighborhood near 'downtown' St. Marys.....not near the Interstate at all.  I hesitate to give the address since I don't know the people that bought the house from my friend who grew the Queen originally.  I have two planted in Augusta, GA.  I know.  Not a chance. But I thought I would see how they would manage a zone 8 climate.

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GaDawg

Yeah, zone 8a is really pushing it. 

Half of the queens planted by the interstate in St. Mary's died. The canary's pulled through untouched. In fact, the canary's and the Sylvester palms did great as far inland as Waycross. 

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The7thLegend

Had some time for a leasurely drive the other weekend and took some more pics of 9a palms and tropicals in Lake City.  Here's an impressive Queen thats old enough to been through the brutal 2010 winter.  Also came 2 mules and another queen.

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IMG_20210527_124300235.jpg

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The7thLegend

Some good size Sylvestris and other palms and tropicals.

IMG_20210527_120622772.jpg

IMG_20210527_120637328.jpg

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The7thLegend

Some Robellini and giant bird of paradise.

IMG_20210531_170817574~2.jpg

IMG_20210528_120458514.jpg

IMG_20210531_170822842~2.jpg

IMG_20210528_120355656.jpg

IMG_20210528_131340198.jpg

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The7thLegend

Have some odds and ends i may post later.

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NBTX11

This may be an unpopular opinion, but all of those palms are on borrowed time in Lake City.  There is nothing protecting Lake City from massive carnage in a major arctic outbreak like seen in the 1980's.  No bodies of water, nothing.  Single digits F can happen there and will again at some point, in which case all of these palms will die.  Ask me how I know.  San Antonio used to have large queen palms too, prior to the 2010/11 freezes.  Most died.  The few that were around that survived the freeze or were panted after 2011 died again this past Feb.  Tallahassee has gotten down to -2 before.  I don't know what Lake City's record low off the top of my head without looking up, but I would bet in 1985 the got down to around 5F or so.  San Antonio is zone 9a and barely drops to 30 some winters, but that didn't stop SA from dropping to 9F in Feb.

Enjoy em while you got em.

Edited by NBTX11
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Teegurr
3 hours ago, NBTX11 said:

This may be an unpopular opinion, but all of those palms are on borrowed time in Lake City.  There is nothing protecting Lake City from massive carnage in a major arctic outbreak like seen in the 1980's.  No bodies of water, nothing.  Single digits F can happen there and will again at some point, in which case all of these palms will die.  Ask me how I know.  San Antonio used to have large queen palms too, prior to the 2010/11 freezes.  Most died.  The few that were around that survived the freeze or were panted after 2011 died again this past Feb.  Tallahassee has gotten down to -2 before.  I don't know what Lake City's record low off the top of my head without looking up, but I would bet in 1985 the got down to around 5F or so.  San Antonio is zone 9a and barely drops to 30 some winters, but that didn't stop SA from dropping to 9F in Feb.

Enjoy em while you got em.

I totally agree, Lake City will get hit by a blast eventually, but right now they are a warm 9a, at an average annual minimum of 24f.

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Sabal_Louisiana
On 9/17/2018 at 12:44 AM, Xenon said:

There are plenty of queens still around in Houston. Many large P. roebelenii survived as well. I don't know about NOLA, but I doubt all (or even most) of the queens there died either. But yes, last winter was brutal. First time I can remember where protected pockets (usually 9b/10a) of Houston received almost no moderation from the heat island effect. 

Queens in NO came through the February freeze unfazed. They got hit kinda hard there in 2018 though.

Here's a picture I took a few weeks ago of one growing in the woods of City Park.

20210501_114759.jpg

Edited by Sabal_Louisiana
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jwf1983

I believe most zones are pushing north.  Particularly the zones with relative proximity to larger bodies of water.  I would've suspected those Queens would survive in your neck of the woods with some degree of certainty as is. 

I live in Washington, DC proper.  The geography and, most importantly, the density of the city keeps it much warmer than the surrounding suburbs.  This is particularly notable during the winter.  We haven't dropped below 23-24 F in a 2 + years now (DCA), with very few nights dropping more than a degree or two below freezing, based on my own daily temperature readings.  We have a few mature specimens of Trachys throughout the city.  I have one Windmill Palm, in addition to 3 Cycas Revoluta, all surviving year round outside will almost no protection other than patio location.   I didn't originally have high hopes for the Sagos, but as it turns out, they all grow each year after minimal winter impacts.

I'm not surprised by the survival of the Queen Palms in your area.  I realize that all it takes is one really harsh winter to reset expectations, but it seems that the widely used growing zones are fairly conservative at this point, and that most places are trending a touch warmer.

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NBTX11

Lake City isn’t by any body of water. It’s mid peninsula in extreme northern Florida. It’s also not by any heat islands or metro areas. That area is extremely vulnerable to severe cold by Florida standards. It’s not a question of if, it’s when. Yes the zones may be creeping north a little, but that matters nothing in an extreme arctic outbreak. Ask me how I know. 
 

San Antonio TX used to have large queen palms everywhere. Today there are zero, unless they were planted since Feb. Everything less hardy than Robusta was slaughtered. Even some of the Robusta were killed. By the way, the 1985 and 2018 freezes went east of South Cental Texas towards the SE US. It can happen. We got nothing out of the 2018 freeze that hit Houston and New Orleans. 

Edited by NBTX11
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The7thLegend
On 6/7/2021 at 10:30 PM, NBTX11 said:

This may be an unpopular opinion, but all of those palms are on borrowed time in Lake City.  There is nothing protecting Lake City from massive carnage in a major arctic outbreak like seen in the 1980's.  No bodies of water, nothing.  Single digits F can happen there and will again at some point, in which case all of these palms will die.  Ask me how I know.  San Antonio used to have large queen palms too, prior to the 2010/11 freezes.  Most died.  The few that were around that survived the freeze or were panted after 2011 died again this past Feb.  Tallahassee has gotten down to -2 before.  I don't know what Lake City's record low off the top of my head without looking up, but I would bet in 1985 the got down to around 5F or so.  San Antonio is zone 9a and barely drops to 30 some winters, but that didn't stop SA from dropping to 9F in Feb.

Enjoy em while you got em.

 

Of course there's weather anomalies that come once every so many decades or whatever but if palms were planted based on extreme lows there wouldn't be Sabal Palmettos in Lake City (7), W. Robustas in Orlando (18) or Royals in Miami since a low of 30 is zone 9b.  Who's really safe?  

 

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