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NOT A TA

Coconut experiments in S. Florida indoor & outdoor

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NOT A TA

This thread will document various experiments with Coconuts both indoor and outdoor here in South FL.  Most of the Coco discussions I've seen on the forum involve zone pushing which I'm not doing since I'm in 10B. 

However, I will be doing some things that may also be relevant to the zone pushers. I'm particularly impressed with Rickybobby's persistence to try and grow a Coconut all the way up in Canada and plan on experimenting with the quick germination "warm bucket of water" technique he's been using.  I want to see what happens to the plants germinated using the technique when kept indoor here as well as outside both in pots and planted.  My main goal is learning the quickest way to turn a mature nut that drops from my trees to a saleable plant. I've had several requests for seedlings from people who've bought nuts from my trees because they really like the taste of the particular fruit and want a tree that's the same.

In the past I've been growing miscellaneous varieties of Coconuts without keeping track of any of the details at all. Since I started growing them to use in my vigilante landscaping projects where I'm essentially giving them away I didn't really care what variety they are or any of the germination details. It's not unusual at all for neighbors to just throw a pile of palms, germinating Coconuts,  or other plants in my yard knowing I'll put them to use.  The Coconuts trees I have now (about 25) all started from seeds kicked to the side when neighbors mow their lawns. If they sit in a garden edge or get thrown in a pile so they're out of the way they'll germinate with no human assistance. So eventually they get pulled (or dug) like weeds and then get thrown in my yard bare root so I have no idea what tree they came from.

Several other neighbors are on those "landscaping" crews that terrorize HOAs with their pruning techniques and although they speak very little English and can't tell me the plants names they know I want Palms and other plants for my projects so if they are thinning out a bed of Cat Palms, weeding,  or pruning something I can use for cuttings they'll just dump stuff in my yard.  Worst that can happen to any of the donations is that something might get put out for bulk pick up the following week so I appreciate their efforts to bring me stuff.

So here's my first experiment. I wondered if cutting a notch on the top and a slot in the bottom of a Coconut husk would speed germination. So i took a freshly fallen nut from the tree in pic below and set it as it would fall & lay naturally and cut a slice of the husk off the top lump and a slot in the bottom. Took pics, set it in the garden, and forgot to write the date down.  Then the pics were lost when the phone died shortly thereafter.  Drat, so much for documentation! Anyway it seems (and I could be wrong) that it's sprouting a month or so quicker than normal considering the spring planting. Today was the first sign of life! Will see if the root started in the bottom slot I cut when I dig it up. Can't let it stay where it is too long because there's an irrigation pipe under it.

I know the pic of the tree isn't good, gray and rainy at the moment but maybe one of the knowledgeable Coconut people can identify it, if not I'll get a better pic when it's nice out. .

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Edited by NOT A TA
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Rasta Rob

I’m flattered that I’ve inspired someone. Iam persistent. I was inspired by the kiwigrower on YouTube originally I just didn’t want to wait months for germination. My only issue is this. If I get coconuts in the summer months here. And there fresh I can germinate in a few days. When the coconuts have been sitting in a grocery store for months during the winter it is harder to do. But if the seed is viable it will pop 

the warm bucket of water is very efficient and if you have good quality ziploc bags you can float baggies of seed in them as well. It’s way cheaper on hydro 

good luck with your experiments 

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GottmitAlex

Rob.  It will be tough for cocos to produce in our latitude, let alone your latitude. Here's hoping. 

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NOT A TA

I don't expect zone pushers to be able to have Cocos that produce fruit so far out of their natural range like say Canada... Yikes!!!!  There are a lot of factors involved in having a plant flourish well enough to reproduce even just slightly out of it's natural range never mind multiple zones.   I've been asking around to see if anyone I know has an aquarium heater so I can mimic Rickybobby's 5 gal bucket Coco incubator. If I don't find someone soon I'll buy one. This evening I checked the temp of collected rainwater in large plastic garbage cans I use and it was 84 F so it won't take a big heater to keep it 90 F at night and probably won't be on at all most days if I keep it in the sun. I checked the local supermarket and the dehusked Cocos are from the Dominican also so I'm going to pick some up when I get a heater.

Why would I bother with the supermarket Cocos and bucket when I can just take nuts that fall off the trees here and throw them on the ground many of you might wonder. I like experimenting, so I'm going to try some things people who don't live where Cocos grow normally do. Like germinating dehusked store bought nuts then potting and keeping inside both in AC and non AC areas. Maybe I'll learn something that can help those who can't currently keep an indoor Coco healthy or grow Coconuts that fruit in their yards. Worst that can happen is stuff dies, in which case we still learn something even if it's what not to do.

I joined Palmtalk after finding the thread about the Corona Coco with the intention of posting in that thread about a few things I believe helped it survive.  Need to find that thread and post my thoughts some time.

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NOT A TA

Although I referred to the little Coco sprout posted above as my first experiment it's actually not. I started trying things with Coconuts in 2005 when I bought a home here in S. FL.  Although I've been a plant guy for 50 years,  have degrees in Arboriculture & related fields, and lots of experience up North, I had very little experience with Palms other than a few from big box stores I kept as house plants that spent summers on the deck. So it's a whole new world in zone 10 compared with 5 and the ole dog's tryin to learn new tricks.

Since there were several mature Cocos on the property already when I bought it I did some research and reconnaissance observing Coconut trees in the area. Based on my studies I decided to try a couple things the first being mounding and the second being to leave the trees alone through the winter months.  Now it just happened that the city conveniently decided to plant Coconut trees along my street right after I bought the house providing me with a perfect control group (neighbors) to compare my trees with. Although I didn't really like the idea of the city showing up and planting stuff in MY yard without notice, when I wasn't there (even though technically it's within the "right of way"). 

A coconuts naturally occurring leaf and other debris normally falls to the base of the tree where it disintegrates and creates a good environment for new roots in the root initiation zone at the base of the trunk. Coconuts in peoples yards,  where the area at the base of the tree gets cleaned up don't get the benefits of the rotting debris. So I decided to regularly mulch and let that deteriorate creating the same effect with a more pleasing appearance. In addition to creating a medium for root growth I believe the insulating effect helps the root system during the winter months particularly young plants and transplants so I load on thick mulch in fall. Even though I'm in 10 B the Coconuts would probably like warmer winters than we have based on my observations so the insulating qualities of the mulch probably helps during our few cool nights each year.

If left alone naturally the old leaves eventually hang straight down along the trunk before falling off and they reduce transpiration by blocking wind and help insulate.  The tree will have several hundred lbs of nuts and other organic material surrounding the terminal bud which provide a heat sink and insulation which keeps the bud warmer on cool winter nights.

Now,  since my test subject trees are along the street in front of my house I can't really let the leaves go until they fall off on their own (because ugly) so during the cool months I wait till the tree's sucked most of the nutrients back out of the old leaves and they're hanging low then cut them off leaving the boots to help insulate the bud. I don't cut any of the coconuts off Nov.-March so they can retain heat from the day which radiates out at night helping keep the bud warm.  I don't pull off any of the old boots or burlap other than once a year in late May for looks.

After 13-14 years you can see a noticeable difference in my trees that have been mounded with mulch and left alone during winters compared to neighbors trees planted by the same crew the same day and started the same size. We both water about the same amount, fertilize our lawns about the same with typical feed & feed, and neither of us has used any Palm fertilizer. Soil's also the same. The only differences I'm aware of is I cut my lawn higher and I use spot spray weed killer on the lawn for dollar weed control and since a tornado took out a large Mango at my house my trees get maybe an hour more direct sun but that's only been about two years. Trees in both yards are basically out in the open, same distance from street etc.

In these first pics (taken today) you can see the mounding/mulching I do to my trees vs the roots trying to grow at the base of the neighbors. There's currently very little mulch left on mine and the whole "lump" is roots, tomorrow is new mulch day.  Neighbors is bare soil/weeds and will probably remain that way.  Both of us remove weeds mechanically every couple weeks.

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In pics below (taken today) you can see the difference in leaving nuts vs taking them for food over the winter and removing old boots.  Mine always have a lot more nuts per bunch and I actually removed two loaded frutescence from mine last week. Neighbors doesn't seem to produce many fruit from winter flowers. Perhaps because the flowers don't have warm air rising from the stored heat in nuts to keep them warm on cool nights? Neighbor removes nuts year round at the point before maturity when the water is good.

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In pics below also taken today you can see the difference in growth rate. Pole saw for scale extended the same amount at both trees. These trees were pretty much identical when planted back in '05. I'll suggest that the mounding and leaving the trees alone with fruit in place help the tree through winter. There was a very noticeable visual difference during the cold winter events in 2009-10 and 10-11 winters when it got pretty cold.  Neighbors trees took a long time to come back from both events compared with mine. So my recommendation to zone pushers is mound/mulch and leave the trees alone with fruit in place (if you can grow fruit) through the winters. Also leave the boots & burlap for insulation.

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NOT A TA

Time for an update on seedling #1.  It's been a month + a week and I figured it was about time to dig it up & pot it before roots get around the irrigation pipe it was set above. Turned out the timing was perfect!

As a refresher here's what I wrote about it in my first post May 13.

So here's my first experiment. I wondered if cutting a notch on the top and a slot in the bottom of a Coconut husk would speed germination. So i took a freshly fallen nut from the tree in pic below and set it as it would fall & lay naturally and cut a slice of the husk off the top lump and a slot in the bottom. Took pics, set it in the garden, and forgot to write the date down.  Then the pics were lost when the phone died shortly thereafter.  Drat, so much for documentation! Anyway it seems (and I could be wrong) that it's sprouting a month or so quicker than normal considering the spring planting. Today was the first sign of life! Will see if the root started in the bottom slot I cut when I dig it up. Can't let it stay where it is too long because there's an irrigation pipe under it.

I carefully dug it up today June 21 so you folks could see nice pics of the roots. The initial roots grew out of the saw cut I'd made in the bottom as I'd expected and another is now coming through an uncut part of the husk. Meanwhile other seeds from the same infrutescense sprouted one month slower than this one I made the notch and cut in, so my guess that it had sprouted a month quicker than usual was spot on. Will repeat the experiment with several nuts with modifications and several without all from the same clump as soon as the next batch drop to verify the quicker sprouting time.

When potting I held the palm so the roots would be in the deep holes I made in the partially filled bucket while adding more soil.  Then I flooded it creating a sort of "quick sand" to eliminate air pockets which is possible due to the newspaper holding the water back enough to create a slurry that would then drain in 5-10 minutes. The newspaper will rot within a few weeks.

On to pics! Happy to answer any questions if anyone has any.

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NOT A TA

Up next is a fertilizer test. Palmgain gets mentioned frequently on the forum and so I bought some to try. Meanwhile I had two Coconuts that fell from the same tree and same infrutescense as #1 with the notch and cut. The nuts fell on the same day, were placed next to each other in a garden area at the same time, watered the same, sprouted the same day, and have very similar size root systems. So they're like twins and I figured they'd make a good pair to test the Palmgain on. So I potted them up in similar fashion, using the same sandy "topsoil" we have here without any amendments like organic matter (which I would normally use) and placed them next to each other where they'll get the same water etc. for a couple weeks while settling into their new accommodations after which I'll start using fertilizer on one while the other will have to survive on whatever nutrients it can get from the nut itself,water, and the soil. I've read while studying extension service bulletins etc. that a Coconut seedling can draw nutrients from the nut for 6 months. Water currently varies depending on rainfall because I collect roof runoff and use that as much as possible with city water being used when necessary until I install a new pump for the shallow well and can use the irrigation system. Due to the Coconut seedling's ability to live off the nutrients in the nut a long time it may take quite a while to see any difference in the plants, so like a lot of palmy stuff, patience required.

Meet the twins! I'm gonna name them Priscilla and Penelope.  Dunno why, never named a plant that I can recall.

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NOT A TA

It's been just over 4 weeks since the twins were potted and since the instructions for Palmgain say wait 4 weeks after transplant it's time to fertilize!

Priscilla is the test subject with Penelope being the (extremely limited) control group. I chose Priscilla as she seems just slightly smaller. Recommended dosage for the 14" pot is 4 Oz and so I used one of my disposable mixing cups for car painting (another hobby) to be accurate.  4 Ounces turned out to be an even thin layer of fertilizer due to the size of the surface area taken by the seed.  I then scratched the fertilizer into the soil surface about 1/2" deep and watered it in per instructions. Both received same watering, so it's not like Priscilla got an extra drink.  Now we watch......

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NOT A TA

Meanwhile the seedling #1 (henceforth known as Prescott) with the notch and root slot cut in the husk is doing fine. However I've noticed that the twins which were from the same clump and dropped a couple days later have caught up to Prescott even though it took them a month longer to sprout. So now they're all almost the same size with the twins having a slight edge.  It'll be interesting to see how they progress. May have to do an additional experiment with more test seeds to see if the notching just speeds up sprouting but doesn't necessarily reduce the overall time to becoming a juvenile.  Prescott is 2 months + a week old and closest to camera in the pic below while the twins are 1 month + a week.

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NOT A TA

Quick update, mostly as a record for myself that Priscilla received another round of fertilizer 8/22. The twins are still bigger than Prescott and no noticeable appearance difference between the twins. I don't really expect much difference at this point as they're still being nourished by the nuts.

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OC2Texaspalmlvr

Love these kinda threads ill definitely be following along =) 

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mas_fuego

I'm in Boca and coconuts are always a role of the dice for me. lol I can never guess if they are fertile or if they will pop.

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NOT A TA
On 8/26/2019 at 6:39 PM, mas_fuego said:

I'm in Boca and coconuts are always a role of the dice for me. lol I can never guess if they are fertile or if they will pop.

Hey, you're really close by. I'm just North of you off of Congress ave.  You're more than welcome to stop over for a PRA. I've got a lil Coco that sprouted a couple days ago I'll give ya if you want to grow one. You could check out the parent, pick a fresh fruit to have a drink from, and if you want one like it we could pot it up the seedling in a 5-7 gal here and you take it home. Will send a PM.

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palmsOrl

Mas_fuego, why do you suppose you have such inconsistent results germinating coconuts?  Your climate in Boca should be such that they germinate in place, though I doubt many would do so from December through February.  I assume with such a long shelf life they would simply postpone germination until a suitably long window of favorable temperatures.

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NOT A TA
31 minutes ago, palmsOrl said:

Mas_fuego, why do you suppose you have such inconsistent results germinating coconuts?  Your climate in Boca should be such that they germinate in place, though I doubt many would do so from December through February.  I assume with such a long shelf life they would simply postpone germination until a suitably long window of favorable temperatures.

I've noticed experimenting that there can be wide differences in germination rates and time to sprouting depending on environmental conditions such as sunlight hours and time of day sunlight does/doesn't hit the nuts, soil composition, soil dampness, depth of nut, etc.  I suggested a PRA because in another thread he expressed an interest in learning and indicated limited experiences. I could tell him here how to make them pop but better to learn why certain conditions are favorable without me typing hunt & peck method for a long time.

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NOT A TA

Update so I have a record that I fertilized Priscilla 10/21. The twins are growing faster than Prescott (on right) and are noticeably bigger in person than appears in pic below. The unfertilized one is in the middle and is the largest of the three although just slightly larger than Priscilla. Roots were just starting to come out of the pots drainage holes so I put all three on a board so they can't root themselves in place. One on right is about 5 months old and two on left are 4 months since sprouting. There's a coconut seedling directly behind the right side one so don't let the extra foliage trick you. Shoulda waited till I removed it before taking the pic. I gifted a neighbor the seedling a few minutes after this pic was taken because although he's got a lot of fruit bearing coconut trees they don't have the sweet water the parent of these do so he's been asking for one.

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jimmyt

Very nice Coconut production post!  Hats off to you!

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NOT A TA
6 hours ago, jimmyt said:

Very nice Coconut production post!  Hats off to you!

Thanks, here's an update pic of the twins & Prescott. The one without fertilizer (middle) is still slightly bigger than the fertilized one and Prescott (with the germination notch) is now noticeably smaller than the twins.

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OC2Texaspalmlvr

Very interesting that the undertilized seed is growing bigger and faster. Curious if this stays true in a year :rolleyes:

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NOT A TA
58 minutes ago, OC2Texaspalmlvr said:

Very interesting that the undertilized seed is growing bigger and faster. Curious if this stays true in a year :rolleyes:

The unfertilized one was slightly bigger as a seedling but is now almost to the point of having one more frond than the fertilized one. It puts up a new spear weeks before the fertilized one. The twins are 5 months old now and Prescott is 6 months so pretty soon (perhaps already) they won't be receiving any nutrients from the nut.

Our short version of "winter" is coming soon so I'll get a chance to see if fertilizer appears to make any difference. Even though I'm in 10B the Cocos still don't like the little bit of cool weather we normally get. They all look a bit haggard toward spring. Ones in pots typically show more leaf damage than if they're planted. I'm going to leave these in pots so I can see what happens.

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jimmyt

Kuul!   Interested to see the effects of the fertilizer and the difference in the effect of winter on potted and planted cocos!  

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NOT A TA

Just a quick post to document that I fertilized Priscilla today and began another test of notching coconut husks and slotting coconut husks for root growth. I notched two nuts and cut a root slot in two husks. Each modified nut has an unmodified one planted next to it so 4 unmodified total. Experiment is to see if sprouting or root growth is enhanced by modifying and if there's a reduced time period to juvenile size due to modifications. All nuts were from the same bunch and dropped within a couple days of each other.

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NOT A TA

Time for an update on the Coco seedling fertilizer experiment. Today is fertilizer application day.

Priscilla (getting fertilizer) seems to be starting to catch up to Penelope but still lagging behind forming new fronds by a week or so. Color appears the same. Meanwhile Prescott who had a one month jump on the twins with the notch and slot cutting that appeared to speed germination is falling farther behind.

We did have a couple cold (for here) nights and I made the decision to put all three in the garage overnight because a cold dry wind was expected which makes coconut palms look shabby and these kids are internet superstars so they need to look their best! All the rest of my potted coconut seedlings were left out to fend for themselves in a protected area. We'll compare appearance in a couple months.

Here's current pic fertilized on right and notched early germination on right.

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jimmyt

Ok. Not A TA  Do you see a correlation with growth and fertilizer or the slot cutting?   You somewhat of a Cirque de Coconut going on down there! :)

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NOT A TA
1 hour ago, jimmyt said:

Ok. Not A TA  Do you see a correlation with growth and fertilizer or the slot cutting?   You somewhat of a Cirque de Coconut going on down there! :)

Have not seen an apparent difference in growth rate or color between fertilized or not fertilized so far on the twins which I sort of expected since it's been reported by others in the past that a coco seedling can live on just the nutrients in the nut for 6 months and possibly longer. My test subjects for this experiment are now 7 months since sprouting. I have another pair of twins that sprouted a few weeks ago I will conduct the same experiment on. The biggest difference is that the first pair sprouted in the summer and the new set about 6 months later in winter. I do expect that if there are noticeable differences using the fertilizer results would start to show up after the nut is no longer able to supply nutrients, so beginning about now on the first set of twins.

Although I'm documenting the Coconut experiments here (because there's so much coco interest) I also have a number of other seedling fertilizer tests I have not posted about. For certain seedlings there is a very noticeable difference in size, color, etc.  For those experiments I have larger groups of test subjects and control groups. Syagrus Romanzoffiana seedlings in particular seem to really like the Palmgain. Seedlings of Dypsis lutescens, Roystonea regia, and Adonidia merrilli also all appear to like the Palmgain but not such a big difference as there is with the Queens. I should note that these results are all based on using the sandy soil here NOT a specifically prepared soil mix which might have more available nutrients due to organic matter content etc.

I may try some other experiments using a controlled release fertilizer instead of the quick release Palmgain, we'll see. Probably won't bother testing "slow" release fertilizers.

As far as the notch and slot cutting to speed up germination,  I currently have 3 more pairs of nuts placed in slightly different micro environments where one nut is modified and an untouched nut is positioned next to it. One pair gets no direct sun, one pair a little and one gets more direct sunlight. I started this test about a month ago so it's winter and the sun is low. I wouldn't try any direct sunlight here in the summer because germination rates seem much lower for nuts that get full summer sun UNLESS they're floating in water or get very frequent irrigation.

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GottmitAlex

Ok. Now add salt.

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NOT A TA
1 minute ago, GottmitAlex said:

Ok. Now add salt.

I've done a lot of reading on the salt usage in other countries where they've shown increased yield per hectare and what not and have been considering an experiment with salt application. I don't want to "add" salt to current experiments because that would enter another variable. If anyone else is interested in salt testing on Cocos nucifera post here and if there's a few interested I'll do it.

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jimmyt

I could only imagine  a salty coconut!  :huh:

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GottmitAlex
1 hour ago, NOT A TA said:

I've done a lot of reading on the salt usage in other countries where they've shown increased yield per hectare and what not and have been considering an experiment with salt application. I don't want to "add" salt to current experiments because that would enter another variable. If anyone else is interested in salt testing on Cocos nucifera post here and if there's a few interested I'll do it.

In my very humble opinion, (this applies only to Coconuts) there is a world of difference between just giving them regular fertilizer than there is adding salt with the fertilizer...

 

 

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sandgroper

I put seawater on my coconuts as they grow around the high tide mark in northern Australia and I've often seen them inundated with saltwater. Whether it helps them or not I don't know but it certainly doesn't do them any harm and they definitely don't taste salty.

Great thread too mate, looking forward to seeing how your experiments progress.

Edited by sandgroper

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Merlyn2220
8 hours ago, NOT A TA said:

Priscilla (getting fertilizer) seems to be starting to catch up to Penelope but still lagging behind forming new fronds by a week or so. Color appears the same. Meanwhile Prescott who had a one month jump on the twins with the notch and slot cutting that appeared to speed germination is falling farther behind.

Here's current pic fertilized on right and notched early germination on right.

I got confused by this, I can tell that the notched early germination is on the right, but I can't tell which one of the other two has been fertilized in this photo.  The one on the left looks like it's starting to go pinnate, but I can't tell on the one in the center.  Can you clear up which one is which? 

Great experiment, BTW!

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NOT A TA
15 minutes ago, Merlyn2220 said:

I got confused by this, I can tell that the notched early germination is on the right, but I can't tell which one of the other two has been fertilized in this photo.  The one on the left looks like it's starting to go pinnate, but I can't tell on the one in the center.  Can you clear up which one is which? 

Great experiment, BTW!

Good Catch! As the kids would say "My bad".  Above the pic of the three Coconuts the sentence quoted below should have said.

Here's a pic. Fertilized on LEFT, and notched early germination on right.

The last fronds of the twins were just starting to go pinnate near the petioles so emerging fronds may.

8 hours ago, NOT A TA said:

Here's current pic fertilized on right and notched early germination on right.

 

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Merlyn2220

Cool, thanks for the info!  Your soil mix looks fairly rich compared to my "sandy topsoil."  Maybe that's why my two "Malayan Dwarf" big box stores ones up front have hardly moved last year.  :D

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NOT A TA
3 hours ago, GottmitAlex said:

In my very humble opinion, (this applies only to Coconuts) there is a world of difference between just giving them regular fertilizer than there is adding salt with the fertilizer...

And that may depend on the soil the salt is being added to as well as other environmental conditions unique to each location. So what seems to work great for you (although you have no "control" group to compare to I'm aware of) may or may not have any noticeable effect one way or the other under other conditions. Your Cocos appear to be doing very well and look better than many here in Coconut land which tells me the combination of things you're doing works well in your environment.

One thing I've considered is the possibility that salt pulls moisture from the surrounding environment and the Coco is one of the few plants that have adapted over time to take advantage of that. Some of the places I saw (other countries) using salt appear much drier than the sub tropical rain forest conditions I have here. So I don't think experimenting with palms in plastic pots (which are manually irrigated as well as receiving rain) would give the salt the same opportunity it would have if I planted the palms in ground and applied salt. Anyone interested in this theory of how salt may benefit coconut palms can google "how to dehumidify a home with rock salt" to learn the basic principles.

Another theory is the possibility that combining salt with fertilizer in drier climates keeps the fertilizer more readily soluble so to speak rather than dry as a bone. If you have very sandy soil that's bone dry the fertilizer in the upper soil level may only get a short window to dissolve before the soil surface (and fertilizer) becomes dry again. With salt holding moisture in the same upper soil level keeping the fertilizer "softer" so to speak, more of the fertilizer may be leached down to the root zone.

As an example, in my Palmgain experiments, the fertilizer pellets that dry quickly on the top of the soil don't seem to break down and get washed down to the roots while the pellets that get tilled 1/2" below soil surface where they stay damp disappear by the next fertilization. Perhaps the use of salt just helps the fertilizer stay damp so it dissolves easier and has no real other benefit.

So salt experimentation would be more time consuming (years) and complex than my simple seedling fertilizer experiments and require a lot more space if all are in ground. I'd need a control group of plants that are just left to survive as if uncultivated, plants getting just fertilizer, plants getting fertilizer and salt, and then double that number to test with and without additional irrigation.

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NOT A TA
41 minutes ago, Merlyn2220 said:

Cool, thanks for the info!  Your soil mix looks fairly rich compared to my "sandy topsoil."  Maybe that's why my two "Malayan Dwarf" big box stores ones up front have hardly moved last year.  :D

They're DWARFS!     AND you're near/at/beyond the Northern limits of Coconut viability!    What were you expecting? ahahaha!!!!       Joking!:rolleyes:

Edit: This got me thinking.... I had a nice brass soil sifting set, PH testing stuff, and what not 40 years ago. Where the hell did it go?

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NOT A TA
2 hours ago, sandgroper said:

I put seawater on my coconuts as they grow around the high tide mark in northern Australia and I've often seen them inundated with saltwater. Whether it helps them or not I don't know but it certainly doesn't do them any harm and they definitely don't taste salty.

Great thread too mate, looking forward to seeing how your experiments progress. 

I've seen your posts that mentioned the sea water and like Alex what you're doing appears to be working well in your micro climate. The two of you guys posts are what got me to go down the "salt for cocos" rabbit hole chasing every study I could find on the web about the subject.

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GottmitAlex
2 hours ago, NOT A TA said:

I've seen your posts that mentioned the sea water and like Alex what you're doing appears to be working well in your micro climate. The two of you guys posts are what got me to go down the "salt for cocos" rabbit hole chasing every study I could find on the web about the subject.

Recommended read regarding this topic.

 

book1.jpg

book2.jpg

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NOT A TA
9 hours ago, GottmitAlex said:

Recommended read regarding this topic

Did you buy that? I only find it available as an ebook for $219.00.

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Merlyn2220
14 hours ago, NOT A TA said:

They're DWARFS!     AND you're near/at/beyond the Northern limits of Coconut viability!    What were you expecting? ahahaha!!!!       Joking!:rolleyes:

Edit: This got me thinking.... I had a nice brass soil sifting set, PH testing stuff, and what not 40 years ago. Where the hell did it go?

Hah, I know!  :P I specifically made sure the spot I planted them in was mostly sand, that was probably "too sandy" with not enough nutrients.  And the mulch I use is cypress, which doesn't degrade and provide any nutrients either.  Maybe I'll take off the top layer of sand and add some "topsoil" mix to it, and see if they start moving.

Fortunately this winter was really mild.  Normally we get a blast of freezing air in the middle of January, but this year we had summer instead.  Only 1 night (22nd) dipped to around freezing, and I think only two nights below 40F! 

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GottmitAlex
6 hours ago, NOT A TA said:

Did you buy that? I only find it available as an ebook for $219.00.

I did not. I read it though. Chula Vista, CA public library.

Didn't think it was that expensive.

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