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Dartolution

Pygmy Date Palm Soil and Care

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Dartolution

Hey guys, 

I had several pygmy date palms for years, until one year I forgot to take them in and it dropped down to 12F and frozen them all to the core. (Zone 7b)

I lost 5-6 yr old palms. It sucked as you can imagine. I had 2 large pots in particular that had 3 trees per pot. Each tree had 1-2 ft of trunk on it. 

 

So this year Ive re-landscaped my entire property, and planted mediterranean fan palms in my back yard (zone 8a). I also have 2 sago cycads on my patio I plant to overwinter in the house. 

 

I wanted to get a 3 trunk pygmy date palm from lowes or HD and pot it up on the patio as well. 

 

Does anyone have any advice with this palm? I didn't have this forum and resource last time. 

I would like to know the best soil type for this palm, and any other care for it. 

It seems as though there is a lot of soil recommendations but none that pin-point species specific. 

 

I was thinking of mixing fox farm ocean forest soil with perlite and all purpose sand for drainage, and using an organic palm fertilizer when planting. 

Thoughts?

 

Thanks guys.

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kinzyjr

@Dartolution Truthfully, this is probably one of the more forgiving palms nutrient-wise out of the Phoenix genus.  Probably a big reason why there aren't many specific recommendations is because specifics are unnecessary with this palm.  As long as the soil drains half decent and you maintain the appropriate nutrient levels you'll have it made in the shade with these.  They grow very well in my acidic loamy soil and seem to grow elsewhere in the state without much trouble.

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Dartolution

How does something like Jungle Grow potting mix, sand, zeolite powder, perlite, and osmocote sound?

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kinzyjr

Sounds fine to my ears.  Should drain well and contain enough nutrients to keep them happy for quite a while.

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Dartolution

is Osmocote recommended?

Is there anyone using zeolite products?

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Rickybobby

I agree with everyone and even up north in pots year round I can’t seem to harm these palms. I use coco coir perlite and clay pebbles 

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Ben in Norcal

You aren't going to do much better than Foxfarm with some drainage added.

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palmsOrl

I have had the same experience as Kinzyjr.  I repotted two clumps into 10 gallon decorative pots and put them in a sunny window inside the house.

The potting media I used was simply 2/3 potting soil and 1/3 playground sand, and they are doing great two months later.  I water each palm about once per week and fertilize with MiracleGro that you mix in with the water.  As stated, not a picky palm as long as you give them reasonable care.

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Dartolution

Great! thanks guys!

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Dartolution

Are these guys easy to divide?

I picked one up today from on the the big boxes and it has 5 trunks in it. (smaller palm). 

I would like to separate them and space them out a bit more, and take 2 of them and plant them separately. 

 

 

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NOT A TA
51 minutes ago, Dartolution said:

Are these guys easy to divide?

I picked one up today from on the the big boxes and it has 5 trunks in it. (smaller palm). 

I would like to separate them and space them out a bit more, and take 2 of them and plant them separately. 

 

 

See my post in this thread about separating Roebelenii https://www.palmtalk.org/forum/index.php?/topic/59484-robellini-palm/&tab=comments#comment-884946

 

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Dartolution

@NOT A TA how are they doing now?

 

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NOT A TA

They're fine and I recently started putting some in the ground. Need to hurry up and get the rest in the ground as roots are growing out the drain holes of the growers pots I put them in.

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Dartolution

Well, hopefully I didn't kill it today. 

It ended up having 7 different palms in the pot. 

I used 4 parts roots organic soil, 2 parts Miracle Grow Performance Organics soil and compost, 1 part sand, added some powdered zeolite in to the mix, and also used mycorrhizae by root magic in the soil. 

I soaked the palm out of its nursery pot for about an hour in rain water and then loosened the bottom roots that were growing round and round the bottom up. 

However, getting the smaller ones out of the larger clump of 3 was quite difficult and I ended up having to get pretty rough with it. 

I was however able to save a good bit of root for each palm. 

 

What do you guys think?
 

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Dartolution

any thoughts?

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NOT A TA

Keep the small ones in shade for quite a while. I moved mine into part sun a bit too soon and lost some. Been planting a bunch of the bigger ones, 3 more going in the ground after I'm done with my break and get off this computer. Here's one of mine hanging out down low with some Broms while my neighbors Royal stands guard.

20190709_161459_zpsqtivqn7v.jpg

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Dartolution

I did place all of them in the shade under my patio. 

Ive been keeping the soil moist but not water logged and they receive very little sun. maybe an hour total. 

How long should I leave them in the deep shade?

 

Do they take long to root?

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Dartolution

Just a bump up for a couple questions I had. 

Ive been keeping them on the patio in shade,  and only watered a couple of times. The main 3 seem to be adjusting and Ive noticed some root growth around the base of the plant. The single one in a nursery pot doesn't seem to be too happy and is fairly droopy with closed "leaves" Im not sure what to do about that one. 

 

The nursery pot with the 3 smaller ones is the worst. One is okay, and the two smallest ones aren't looking good at all being droopy and sad looking :( 

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Dartolution

Here is the main trio I potted up

PR1july302019.jpg

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Dartolution

Here is the small trio I divided (not doing good)

PRtrioJuly302019.jpg

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Dartolution

Here is the single I divided (not too sure about this one either)

PRsingleJuly302019.jpg

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NOT A TA

Keep the small ones out of direct sun for the rest of the summer. You may not be watering them enough. The two little ones are goners.

Daytime highs here are about 90 and I'm using a sandy well draining mix. I water daily unless it rains.

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Dartolution

That may be it. 

They are in full shade. They may get an hour of late afternoon sun but that's all. 

 

I was worried about overwatering them. 

The soil mix I used seems to drain well. 

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NOT A TA

No direct sun for the struggling ones would be better.

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Dartolution

Thanks!

Is there anything more I can do to help the smaller ones?

Or for that matter, the larger triple clump?

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NOT A TA

Don't let them dry out.

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GottmitAlex

Reminds me, I have to repot a bunch of 'em...

These are like weeds in Cali/northern Baja. But i like them more than the washies. 

 

15647269376788362692229047442766.jpg

Edited by GottmitAlex
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