Hi everyone, I live in northern middle Tennessee and have been growing palms in ground unprotected for 8 years. Haven’t always been successful by the way. Have a pretty decent collection of non palms also. Anyway to get to the point, I am in the process of planting some potted sabal palmettos and was hoping to pick some of the experts brains on the realistic long term survival of a palmetto in northern Tennessee. I’m fairly deep into this project already and am half tempted to start a post to document and track the whole process if anyone is interested. Thanks in advance
Awhile back I posted photos of the first surviving crop of seeds from my Dypsis lanceolata. Those seeds are harvested and ready to go to new homes.
This is a clustering Dypsis but only sparsely so. My palm has two stems and is 8-10' tall. It is notable for its unusually long, arched fronds and wide, rippled leaflets. It is closely related to Dypsis pembana and cabadae.
Dypsis lanceolata fresh seeds: 50 @ $10.00 for the lot
100 @ $15.00 for the lot
Shipping = $6.00 in a padded envelope. I cannot ship seeds or plants outside the US. No shipping to HI.
Payment via Paypal.
PM me if you are interested
As I am presently living in Nashville, I wanted to get the scoop on palms in the area. On a FB palm group (NAPA I believe) I found a guy who lived in Henderson (20 minutes north of East Nashville) Tennessee who offered to show me some of the palms in the area. I was very surprised that there were any unprotected palms besides Needles and Sabal minor, and was more surprised at how many I saw in a relatively small area. Ill add he knew of more but It had gotten late, and we plan on doing another palm "hunt" in the future.
First this large windmill palm near Old Hickory Lake. According to the owner he bought two windmill palms about 15 - 17 years ago (this being one) while in Orlando around a 5 gallon size after asking about palms to grow in cold hardy climates. Sadly the other one died (visible in photo) a few years ago after a winter, it simply declined and died. The guy who was showing me around was pretty sure it wasn't cold damage as it was apparently a mild winter. This palm has never been protected, and the trunk was about 17 feet tall.
Notice all these volunteers too.
he also had a smaller one he planted around 8 years ago. very fat trunk. More volunteers too.
Few other Windmills around the area. This one on a property right on the lake.
Two more by a pool.
The guy who I went with also had a very impressive garden. He had some non palms that were still impressive But i will add those at the bottom of this post.
Sabal palmetto, never protected, under a small roof area, planted 15 years ago.
Another palmetto, this one's first winter. Not bad damage considering this winter was colder then most, apparently duration wise.
Needle clump around 20 years old.
Not sure the age on this one.
Lots of nice Sabal Minor, some of these he believes aren't fully sabal because they have outgrown some other Sabal Minor he planted much earlier. Either way he has around 20 - 25 planted around and had a literal bucket full of fresh seeds.
These some of the self ID'd Lousiana, sold as Minor. He also said these would sometimes get very mild burn while the full minor didn't. All were purchased as minor.
One in back right is Sabal Birmingham. Two others are minor.
These are apparently full Sabal Minor. These were older then the others.
Windmills too, planted around 8 years ago dont fully remember. None of these palms have ever been protected I should add.
Back near the lake, We also stopped at a place with two Sabal Palmetto palms. He apparently had never stopped here to ask so we did. The owner said he dug up the "palm" in Jacksonville around 15 years ago. He did not think It was a palmetto, though when we looked we decided it was, and told him as such. apparently its slower then usual growth rate is due to the owner having a habit of cutting off all fronds with noticeable burn, and ice damage. We also figured he thought it was a single palm and probably dug up several of them in the same place at once. Also never protected.
At the Henderson Memorial park, apparently there used to be a Sabal Minor and Birmingham (the latter donated by my "guide"). The Birmingham died somehow, and the Minor was pulled out after over a decade to put in a trash can (yeah I know). But down the peninsula, into the woods a little, were many Sabal Minor naturalizing littering the ground, near some swampy areas. There was easily over 100 mixed in spread out over 100/100 feet
There were some other houses we passed by with palms, he knew a person who owned this place, and apparently this a Sabal Birmingham. No other palms on the property
Another windmill. Some of the plants looked like they had been wrapped including this, so we assume some fronds were cooked by Christmas lights. He intends to going back to warn them about it.
also a needle at the same place.
Another home with large Sabal Minor.
They also had a needle and a smaller Minor too.
Now for some of his other rare non palms. Yucca aloifolia for starters. This area really seems like a 7b despite its zone designation.
Sago Cycads, been there at least 5 years, come back every year as perenials. both have green here,
Two live oaks laden with Spanish Moss.
Some kind of Eucalyptus I forgot which one.
I ended up getting one of the Large Windmill palms offspring while we visited. I have since cleaned it and potted it better, this was the only photo I have.
It's Sabal photo time! A dozen years ago a topic on any Sabal palms would have sparked yawns or sneers. Back then on PT the topic du jour was Dypsis, Dypsis, Dypsis, 24/7, 365 days a year. An island in the Indian Ocean was flooding the world with hundreds and hundreds of Dypsis palms and people were going mad. Well, not actually that many hundreds because each Dypsis species had a minimum of eight names each. And Kew recognized none of them. Good times.
That was then. Most palm lovers have come to the realization that of the estimated 2,500 species of palms in the world, 92% of them are not Dypsis and perhaps some of the less exalted genera were worthy of notice. Which brings me back to Sabals. And photos. I decided to update my photo library with photos of the Sabals on my Garden Lot. Many of them are what I call "uber dwarfs", the tiny varieties of Sabal minor named for the towns nearest where they were discovered. They have all the tenacious cold hardiness of their full-size cousins in a much smaller package.
Sabal minor 'Blountstown Dwarf' - the original uber dwarf that introduced me to the variability of this species. At least one of the little palms in the flower box will flower for the first time.
Sabal minor 'Chipola Dwarf' - slightly larger uber dwarf
Sabal minor 'Wakulla Dwarf' - about the same size as Blountstown but is 60-70 miles south in FL's Big Bend
Sabal minor 'High Springs' - another slightly larger uber dwarf
Sabal minor 'Welfare' - A Texas S. minor found only near the ghost town of Welfare. How cool is that? It is notable for forming a short trunk
Here’s a little update on my palms after this icy winter! According to Accuweather, our lowest temperature this year was 19°F
1) Trachycarpus Fortunei ‘Bulgaria’ - this was wrapped in a few layers of burlap. It looks great and no spear pull!
2) Sabal ‘Louisiana’ - this was unprotected other than some dead leaves that naturally gathered at the base. This looks stellar as well and it’s starting to get its palmate leaves!
3) Sabal Minor ‘McCurtain’ - unprotected; super slow but still growing!
4) Sabal ‘Louisiana’ #2 - unprotected and exposed to the elements. This poor palm was buried in snow and sleet. The center spear even looked like it was reaching out of the snow for help at one point lolol. Despite this, he’s still trucking! I hope to see some palmate leaves this year!
5) Sabal Uresana - unprotected (other than dead leaves that ended up there naturally). I planted this purely as a hardiness experiment (which is the reason its close to the foundation). The newest spear is over a foot long and keeps the icy blue hue! Let’s see how long before it croaks
6) Sabal Palmetto ‘Mocksville’ - unprotected (dead leaves at base that got there naturally). This one is starting to look like a mini palmetto now! It’s got palmate leaves and I hope for more this summer! I can’t wait for costapalmate leaves to start forming!
7) Trachycarpus Fortunei ‘Bulgaria’ #2 - protected with burlap. this palm is currently my favorite of the bunch! It’s leaves are getting big and no spear pull from the winter! I hope it starts really taking off this year!