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DAVEinMB

Advice for Mule Planting Location

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DAVEinMB

Good morning everyone. I just picked up a couple of 65 gallon mule palms and wanted to get some opinions on planting location. I know there are a ton of factors that go into how cold tolerant these plants are and I have no knowledge of their specific genetics. As the crow flies I'm about 5 miles off the coast in the myrtle beach area, zone 8b. My plan was to plant them in an open area of my front yard that receives sun all day long,  including early morning sun. I could put them in a more protected area which may provide a better microclimate but I'd rather keep them out in the open.

As a side note these palms spent over a year in containers on the nursery's lot however we cruised through the winter with 9b lows. Regardless of where they go I plan on providing some protection. Thanks in advance!

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Allen

Super nice palms.  Hopefully someone can chime in as to location.

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Chester B

I would think if you have a spot that is full sun with protection from winter winds (if you get any) that would be ideal.  If you're going to plant them this late in the season I would protect them for sure.

I have two mules growing out, but no experience with any in the ground.  I'm in 8B as well.

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DAVEinMB
35 minutes ago, Allen said:

Super nice palms.  Hopefully someone can chime in as to location.

Thanks! I was stoked when I came across them. It's tough to find them here, especially this size. 

17 minutes ago, Chester B said:

I would think if you have a spot that is full sun with protection from winter winds (if you get any) that would be ideal.  If you're going to plant them this late in the season I would protect them for sure.

I have two mules growing out, but no experience with any in the ground.  I'm in 8B as well.

Unfortunately the spot I currently have in mind will provide little to no protection from wind.  Where I'm at is far less windy than being right on the coast but I'm sure it will still play a factor. My back yard is fenced on both sides and has more trees to help with wind but sun exposure will also be less. 

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DAVEinMB

I mean am I overthinking this? I would think they have enough mass to pull through if damage occurs but I have no prior experience. During our coldest months there are still days that we'll see temps into the 70s and 80s (sometimes multiple days in a row). But at the same time we could have a week that highs are only in the 40s. 

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Allen

You are in pretty good shape in Jan 2018 it shows your low being 15F and that was a nasty year.  

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DAVEinMB

Ok, spots have been picked. I'll post some pics and keep yuhs updated on how they do.

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Manalto

The advice I got from the place I bought my mule palm (Mule Palms of Mississippi) was to plant them a little high because in Mobile we get quite a bit of rainfall and they don't like wet feet. 

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DAVEinMB
1 hour ago, Manalto said:

The advice I got from the place I bought my mule palm (Mule Palms of Mississippi) was to plant them a little high because in Mobile we get quite a bit of rainfall and they don't like wet feet. 

Awesome, thanks! I have it in a place that shouldn't have drainage issues but I've elevated it some just in case

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mdsonofthesouth

We see 70s and 80s every winter even saw low 90s in the dead of winter here once. Its those cold snaps you have to worry about. Last winter killed most of my palms and what did them in was literally a 12 or so hour stretch which had a combo of extreme low temps and wind. Aside from that short event my palms were sailing through winter with ease. Be ready to protect especially planting this late oh and beautiful palms you got there great find!

Edited by mdsonofthesouth

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DAVEinMB
11 minutes ago, mdsonofthesouth said:

We see 70s and 80s every winter even saw low 90s in the dead of winter here once. Its those cold snaps you have to worry about. Last winter killed most of my palms and what did them in was literally a 12 or so hour stretch which had a combo of extreme low temps and wind. Aside from that short event my palms were sailing through winter with ease. Be ready to protect especially planting this late oh and beautiful palms you got there great find!

90 degrees in md during the winter is insane! Our winters here are pretty inconsistent, 40 degree temperature swings from one day to the next are not uncommon. Although the extreme lows (for 8b) seem to be happening less in recent years,  they do happen. I'm just hoping that when they do the duration is short. Farmer's almanac is predicting a mild winter this year so fingers crossed. 

Thanks for the palm compliment! These were hidden in the back corner of the nursery's lot along with a couple Phoenix sylvestris. The genetics of the 2 seem to be pretty different - the larger of the 2 appears to have more queen influence whereas the smaller more butia. The crown on the smaller one is lacking some so I'm interested to see if there's a change in appearance once it fills in. 

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mdsonofthesouth

Only happened once and later in the coldest part. But 70s and 80s come pretty much each January. To contrast your recent weather since 2012 we have consistently (almost every winter) seen 7b and even a handful of 7a temp lows. Thankfully the events are usually short save for 2018...

 

Can't wait to see them in and flourishing!

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Chester B

They're really nice looking But I have to ask how much you paid for them.  There is only one place here that sells them and they are an awful price, around $500 each for that size.

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DAVEinMB
41 minutes ago, Chester B said:

They're really nice looking But I have to ask how much you paid for them.  There is only one place here that sells them and they are an awful price, around $500 each for that size.

About the same. They only had 65 gallon and they were priced at $450. I've only seen them at one other place in town and they had 7 gallon listed at $150.

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Chester B
1 hour ago, DAVEinMB said:

About the same. They only had 65 gallon and they were priced at $450. I've only seen them at one other place in town and they had 7 gallon listed at $150.

Wow, well at least I don't feel so bad about the price here.  Follow the above advice and you should be good. I wish you the best, and I hope they bring you many years of enjoyment.

Edited by Chester B

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DAVEinMB
6 hours ago, Chester B said:

Wow, well at least I don't feel so bad about the price here.  Follow the above advice and you should be good. I wish you the best, and I hope they bring you many years of enjoyment.

Yea man, they are definitely not cheap. I caught a break on them because of how long they were on the lot but still.

I appreciate it, from what I'm told they are hit or miss here so I guess we'll see. I'll post some more pics of the bigger one in the ground shortly, not sure where the other one is going yet...

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OC2Texaspalmlvr

@DAVEinMB As a large 3g palm my mule saw 20° freezing rain with no protection. Spear pulled at the end of winter and hasnt looked back. Prolly a decent 45g palm now growing like crazy. With your sized palms, it will definitely help with hardiness. Baby them thru there first winter in the ground, after that prolly only need protection in extreme weather in the teens. 

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DAVEinMB

Ok as promised here are a few more pics. 

I cleaned both of them up a bit and discovered an ant nest in the larger of the 2. Seems like they're nested in the bud area - the newest emerging frond looks like it's drooping more than the others so I'm going to keep an eye on it. I sprayed it down with a 3-in-1 fungicide, insecticide, miticide for the time being.

First 2 pics are the of the new home of the larger one. I opted for sun exposure over microclimate. 

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DAVEinMB

A wider shot of the yard including a 7g mule that was planted in the spring. Debating planting the other 65g in the location shown. 

 

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Swolte

Looks like you're not the only one interested in palms in that neighborhood. Good luck with the mules! To be safe, you can protect them the first winter before they are established in their new spots (or when you find out temps are really brutal). 
:)

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DAVEinMB

Lastly, a solo shot of the yet to be planted 65g, a view of the base of the planted 65g showing planted depth, and a solo shot of the 7g.

It may be hard to tell in the photos but the 65g mule that isn't in the ground yet looks nothing like the other 65g. It more closely resembles the 7g.

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DAVEinMB
9 minutes ago, Swolte said:

Looks like you're not the only one interested in palms in that neighborhood. Good luck with the mules! To be safe, you can protect them the first winter before they are established in their new spots (or when you find out temps are really brutal). 
:)

No sir! There are a ton of butia and sabal throughout the neighborhood as well as some trachy, Mediterranean fan, and washingtonia. 

Thanks! I'm definitely going to do what I can do make sure they stay happy. 

 

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NOT A TA

They look good Dave!

Neighborhood's gonna look nicer and nicer as all the palms mature.

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DAVEinMB
1 hour ago, OC2Texaspalmlvr said:

@DAVEinMB As a large 3g palm my mule saw 20° freezing rain with no protection. Spear pulled at the end of winter and hasnt looked back. Prolly a decent 45g palm now growing like crazy. With your sized palms, it will definitely help with hardiness. Baby them thru there first winter in the ground, after that prolly only need protection in extreme weather in the teens. 

That's really encouraging considering how small yours was and kept trucking. How long did it take it to get from 3g to where it's at now? 

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DAVEinMB
7 minutes ago, NOT A TA said:

They look good Dave!

Neighborhood's gonna look nicer and nicer as all the palms mature.

Thanks John! 

Would definitely be nice to see what all the yards are going to look like decades down the road. 

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Chester B

I think its going to look great, I'm envious.  I have about 120 houses in my HOA with only 9 having palms.  7 have only Trachycarpus fortunei, one has 7 Waggies and then me with 11 different species in the ground.  Japanese influenced gardens are more the norm here.

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OC2Texaspalmlvr
13 hours ago, DAVEinMB said:

That's really encouraging considering how small yours was and kept trucking. How long did it take it to get from 3g to where it's at now? 

Feb 2018 it spear pulled so roughly 18 months now to recover and put on size with a new frond every 2 weeks or so ill try to get before and after pics. 

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DAVEinMB
2 hours ago, OC2Texaspalmlvr said:

Feb 2018 it spear pulled so roughly 18 months now to recover and put on size with a new frond every 2 weeks or so ill try to get before and after pics. 

That growth rate is exciting, def looking forward to seeing before and after shots

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DAVEinMB
3 hours ago, Chester B said:

I think its going to look great, I'm envious.  I have about 120 houses in my HOA with only 9 having palms.  7 have only Trachycarpus fortunei, one has 7 Waggies and then me with 11 different species in the ground.  Japanese influenced gardens are more the norm here.

Trachycarpus fortunei aren't super popular here but you do see them. I don't think I've ever seen a wagnerianus around. The most popular is sabal, they are EVERYWHERE

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Chester B
1 hour ago, DAVEinMB said:

Trachycarpus fortunei aren't super popular here but you do see them. I don't think I've ever seen a wagnerianus around. The most popular is sabal, they are EVERYWHERE

I think the climate here is ideal for Trachycarpus.  I would say they outnumber any other palm 500:1.  I can count on one hand the times I've seen something other than them, not including my own plants.

It would be nice to see some Sabals for a change.

Edited by Chester B

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