By Michael Dourney
Recent reader, new time caller. I live in Tampa, FL and have a Canary Island Date Palm that was recently diagnosed with palmetto weevils. Our local arborist was not able to come out quickly, but successfully and accurately diagnosed it with images and a phone call. Despite everyone that I spoke with saying that the tree should be pulled, I read some guidance on this form as well as from a You Tube video suggesting a few courses of action, including:
Fertilome Tree & Shrub Drench Gallon and
7.9% Bifenthrin Concentrate for Insect Control, which as the gentleman in the video (who was dealing with severe issues in South America suggested), I applied by drilling into some of the lower fronds with a 1.5" auger bit in order to spray the Bifenthrin into the bud. I also dumped some fire ant powder into the top of the bud, again something else that I read on a forum. I was desperate and was trying whatever I could. I only removed fronds that were drooping and brown with weevil tunnels...trying to give the tree a chance by leaving the greener fronds (mainly on one side as you will see). And I have remained patient.
That was all back in March, it is now Mid May. I've done some repeat application between then and now of the Bifrenthrin. The fronds that were not infected have held up all this time (see pictures). And most recently, there are some frizzy new frond spikes that have started to emerge (again, see photos). My question to this illustrious group is, (a) is this actual new growth, (b) is there any chance this palm will survive and recover to some sort of decent life, and (c) at this point, what should I do to help the palm?
Thanks in advance for the replies. This is a whole new ordeal for me...not necessarily the greenest thumb, but I've put in a lot of effort. If this guy survives, I'm popping some serious champagne. Be well!
This topic is started to document the cold damage, or hopefully lack thereof, due to the cold spell.
Initially, it looks like most of the damage done locally was due to frost. As you get outside of town, the damage can get pretty severe on the "high-9b/low-10a" palms that have become more common due to the advent of Lethal Bronzing. I'll begin with this photo I captured west of the airport on Medulla Rd. The damage didn't even wait for the warmup to manifest. For my own garden, I'm going to wait until it warms up to do my report. There may be palms that look undamaged now that will show damage after the next three days go over 80F. There may also be palms that appear to have light damage that have more extensive damage than shows at first.
@GoatLockerGuns was kind enough to compile his results from the Texas 2021 freeze in a spreadsheet that was easy to import into the Cold Hardiness Master Data. If you'd like to do this as well, I can assist if necessary.
I may have to crack out the shorts next week for work. My written rule is that anything over 16C / 61F is typically shorts and t-shirt weather in my line of work. Otherwise I will overheat if I am working in jeans and a hoodie inside the warehouse. Those forecasted nighttime temperatures are ridiculous as well for 51N during the last week of December. I would expect nighttime lows of 13-14C in July, let alone late December. Some model runs are putting the nighttime lows at 15C for Wednesday and Thursday following a high of 18C / 64F on Wednesday!
14C at 850hPa translates to about 17-18C at ground level. It will be interesting to see just how warm it gets, especially if some eastern places also benefit from a Foehn effect too. Potentially 20C / 68F in a few eastern locations, although I find that hard to believe during the last week of December at 51-54N. Probably 18C maximum. If we had a setup like this in July it would bring 35C+ temperatures.
The consistency of the ensemble runs is remarkable! I have never seen a set of ensemble runs so consistent like this. It looks like this warm/mild spell is nailed on now.
Here's the ECMWF for Wednesday, which is supposedly going to be the warmest day, although it could be any of Wednesday, Thursday or Friday in theory.
UKMET pumping higher pressure and warm air up from Africa, although the airflow into western Europe and the UK is coming up from the Canary islands specifically.
The GFS model puts Jan 1st / New Years day as the warmest day potentially...
Here's the ECMWF model for New Years day. Both setups looking very similar. Potentially record breaking in many places on the western half of the continent.
December records, and possibly winter records too, may tumble next week in Spain, UK, France, Netherlands, Germany etc. Watch this space. Daytime maxima and nighttime minima both at threat.
Link to the event page: https://www.flbgfoundation.org/content.aspx?page_id=4002&club_id=479557&item_id=1487058
Palm vendors will include Calusa Palms Nursery: http://www.calusapalmsnursery.com/
A full list of vendors is available at the event page.
For those who haven't been to this garden for either of tours or for a personal showing, you're missing out. Luckily, not for long. The new botanical garden is slated to open in Fall 2022.
For those familiar with the thread in the Travel Logs regarding Dr. John Rossi's Garden tour for the joint CFPACS + FCPCS meeting, you know how wonderful this garden was the first time. Now, the private garden is taking the next step and will become a botanical garden and nature preserve.
CFPACS and FCPCS had their Joint Holiday Meeting this weekend and were treated to a preview of coming attractions. Currently, the garden is home to over 300 species of palms and over 50 species of cycads. The garden also includes an area of "untouched" Florida, with tons of Sabal minor, Sabal palmetto and Serenoa repens under deciduous hardwoods.
You can see the new website here: https://www.stjohnsbotanicalgarden.org/
Here are a few photos from the meeting/preview:
Getting the site ready:
The original entrance:
The new entrance:
New plant tags:
A Bizzie and Beccariophoenix near one of the old Agave gardens:
Where we parked three years ago is now tons of understory plants:
Staging area for the auction plants:
Getting the membership booth set up:
The work truck: