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PalmTreeDude

Huge Needle Palm at Watercountry USA (Williamsburg, VA)

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PalmTreeDude

A month ago I was at Watercountry here in Williamsburg and I saw this really nice Needle Palm. I just randomly found the picture on my phone I forgot I did not post it yet. There were also a lot of trachys there. 

20180829_123436.jpg

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Chester B

That's a beauty.  I need it in my backyardB)  I do have a source for larger needles here but they are pricey as he's the only one in the state that has them.  Probably around 4'-4.5' tall and around once in the ground.  $275 a pop

Any better in the east?

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PalmTreeDude
3 hours ago, Chester B said:

That's a beauty.  I need it in my backyardB)  I do have a source for larger needles here but they are pricey as he's the only one in the state that has them.  Probably around 4'-4.5' tall and around once in the ground.  $275 a pop

Any better in the east?

Yeah they are pricey! I did not see any for sale over there since I was just there for the day at Watercountry (it was about an hour and fifteen minute drive from where I live). There were plenty of amazing looking Needle Palms and Sabal minor and there was even tons of trachys, a few with volunteers coming up in the planters. I got my Needle Palm from TyTy nursery (I know they are contraversial, this is right when I got addicted to palms) but it is doing great. Here is a picture of mine I took today. 

20180912_161238.jpg

20180912_161251.jpg

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Chester B

It looks pretty good, the fronds on yours are a little longer than my only big one, but I'm growing it in full sun.  Here in the PNW they will take too long to grow in shade, even though I do have one to see how it turns out. Here's my largest needle full of seed, which I'm assuming is sterile as I don't have any male plants that are mature yet.  Easily 4' high and around, but I wish it was a monster like the one you showed earlier.

There is a house near here where they've done a hedge of mature needle palms, but it's in a gated community so I haven't had a chance to see it yet.  If I ever get in there I'll definitely post some pics.

Needle 3.jpg

Needle 1.jpg

Needle 2.jpg

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PalmTreeDude
On 9/12/2018, 4:25:07, Chester B said:

It looks pretty good, the fronds on yours are a little longer than my only big one, but I'm growing it in full sun.  Here in the PNW they will take too long to grow in shade, even though I do have one to see how it turns out. Here's my largest needle full of seed, which I'm assuming is sterile as I don't have any male plants that are mature yet.  Easily 4' high and around, but I wish it was a monster like the one you showed earlier.

There is a house near here where they've done a hedge of mature needle palms, but it's in a gated community so I haven't had a chance to see it yet.  If I ever get in there I'll definitely post some pics.

Needle 3.jpg

Needle 1.jpg

Needle 2.jpg

I am not sure if I am wrong or not, but I heard that Needle Palms can sometimes produce both male and female flowers on one plant. I would still try to germinate those seeds though, mine as well give it a try and you might get lucky, and also have a bunch of free Needle Palms! I germinated two needle palm seeds I collected from Hilton Head Island, S.C. and the seedlings grew a lot quicker than I thought they would, they got three strap fronds in about a month (in full sun). I gave them away to a friend near by and I have no clue where or how they are doing today, hopefully they are in the ground somewhere thriving. The seeds were tricky though, you kind of have to go through a layer of shells around the seed until you get the small lighter colored inside seed. They also took about two months to grow (I used a heating mat). But getting them to germinate sure felt great! When I first saw the little sprouts in the bag (which had soil that was almost muck, maybe if it was just slightly less moist in could have gotten more to germinate) I yelled "YES!" out loud. Give them a try when the fully ripen. 

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Chester B

I've germinated a few needle palm seeds that I purchased.  A couple of months went by with no action so I cracked that hard outer shell with a pair of pliers and within a week I had germination.

This palm had a few seeds on it last year when I bought it but they never really developed.  I'll keep an eye on this one and see what happens.  The offsets or suckers on this palm also have seeds developing too even though they are quite a bit smaller.

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cm05

It’s good to hear the Trachys are still alive there, and to see the Needles still look good, though I’m not surprised about that. I went there + Busch Gardens in 2012 (I have tons of pics) and seeing palms growing in the same zone as me is one of the main reasons why I even have palms in the first place.

Didn’t see any Sabal minor there though, this palm as been elusive for me. Aside from mine, I’ve only seen two, one in Washington DC (army green) and another in Long Island (very blue), so much variety with this species.

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Matthew92

The trees in that part of the country are so beautiful (Williamsburg). I remember going to Busch Gardens many years ago before I was very interested in plants, and the lush canopy/forest stuck in my mind. I have a great love for the northern, temperature flora- however, my love of subtropical/tropical plants wins slightly more (;

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PalmTreeDude

There were wild Bald Cypress all over the woods at water country. It was just missing the Sabal minor. ;)

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Manalto

Years ago, I wanted to get a needle palm to see if it would thrive in Connecticut. The seller told me, "It's a good palm for your grandchildren to enjoy in their old age." Are they really that slow, or was he referring to how slowly they would grow in New England?

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NC_Palms

Williamsburg and the surrounding area is more palmy than what most people realize. When I visited Williamsburg, the resort I was staying at had a few trachycarpus fortunei. 

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TexasColdHardyPalms

@Manalto If you give them shade, copious amount of brutal summer heat, a LOT of water and fertilizer they grow much faster than people advertise. It will take 25-30 years to get a palm with 3' of trunk though. 

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Manalto

Thanks, Joseph. It sounds like it would be perfect as a property-line understory plant on the Gulf Coast.

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TexasColdHardyPalms

Precisely. We hide a lot of propane tanks, water wells and pool equipment with Minors and Needles around here too.

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mnorell

A happy needle palm is something very special. Avoid pruning them, give them decent or better shade and they in a few years will give you lots of happiness. I have found them to be variable in leaf. I have one in Mississippi sourced from north central Florida and it has wide leaflets and is very glossy and luxurious-looking. I have a couple of others I think from central Mississippi that have thinner leaflets and really nowhere near the beauty of my Florida-sourced specimen. Though I have seen other Mississippi-sourced individuals with the wide glossy leaflets as well. I think it is luck of the draw. They are faster than you think. They also need room. Six feet is a comfortable diameter but maybe even a little more. Don’t plant these up against a walkway and then hack them to death! You will be disappointed. 

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Marius
On 9/12/2018, 1:22:45, PalmTreeDude said:

A month ago I was at Watercountry here in Williamsburg and I saw this really nice Needle Palm. I just randomly found the picture on my phone I forgot I did not post it yet. There were also a lot of trachys there. 

20180829_123436.jpg

What a magnificent plant. They are extremely difficult to get in South Africa. 

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Manalto

Would you say a large needle palm, considering its needles, is an effective barrier plant that would discourage the occasional trespasser? (I've used Poncirus trifoliata for this pretty successfully.)

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cm05
On 9/14/2018, 7:58:27, Manalto said:

Years ago, I wanted to get a needle palm to see if it would thrive in Connecticut. The seller told me, "It's a good palm for your grandchildren to enjoy in their old age." Are they really that slow, or was he referring to how slowly they would grow in New England?

I’m just south of you in Long Island and my Needle just opened up it’s 4th frond of the year, with number 5 and 6 coming up. It’s gained girth and 2-3 inches of “trunk” height this summer, it also flowered for the first time and has seeds. No offsets yet, however. They aren’t that slow, slower than Trachycarpus yes, but faster than Sabal minor in my experience. I bought mine in May of last year as a 3 gallon, a smaller plant would be slower, but that’s true for every palm.

My main gripe is that their fronds don’t take heavy snow very well, my Needle looked shredded by March.

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cm05

Some pics from Water Country (2012).

Nice grouping by the entrance:

7F01FB95-4A01-4DF0-845A-5AB2A1D36703.jpe

Wagnerianus:

D7C5ABD4-A385-4E58-92E9-31A27930D661.jpe

Edited by cm05
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cm05

Pics from neighboring Busch Gardens (2012):

Trachycarpus sp. nova?

976332FF-76EB-4682-A63C-283D677AF65F.jpe

Plain Windmills:

37AC31D5-40A1-471D-88DB-35AEB22F11BD.jpe

E6044B03-5EAE-46A8-B322-03DED740143B.jpe

Large Needle:

CA1B2243-9554-4630-8437-F19DC832A345.jpe

Sago Palm (in zone 7b?):

B1DD0DC5-D402-47D2-BFE5-02F5F8B10DAB.jpe

Another Needle:

320E36BC-409F-4664-A7E6-B9F290BE7A17.jpe

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PalmTreeDude

Nice pictures! Some of those Trachys were not there when I went, but a lot still are and they are not just hanging on, they are thriving. Here is the huge Needle Palm from Google Maps. Also, I wonder why there is not Sabal minor planted?

20180916_163024.jpg

Edited by PalmTreeDude

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mdsonofthesouth
19 hours ago, Manalto said:

Would you say a large needle palm, considering its needles, is an effective barrier plant that would discourage the occasional trespasser? (I've used Poncirus trifoliata for this pretty successfully.)

 

In my humble opinion no, the needles are long and sharp but they pale in comparison to a yucca gloriosa with thick leaves or aliofola for such use. 

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Manalto

Thanks. I wondered, because of the position of the needles on the plant, if you could brush right past. The yuccas are great for full sun.

I'm going to start a "Security Planting" thread - for those of us in iffy neighborhoods. ;)

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mdsonofthesouth
4 hours ago, Manalto said:

Thanks. I wondered, because of the position of the needles on the plant, if you could brush right past. The yuccas are great for full sun.

I'm going to start a "Security Planting" thread - for those of us in iffy neighborhoods. ;)

 

Once I find a source for solid gloriosa or aliofola I'll be doing the same even though I'm in a solid rural area with low crime.

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