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JASON M

Royalty Comes to N. Central Florida..

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JASON M


Hey there everyone. My husband has a pickup truck rental right now (long story short) and I jumped on the opportunity to drive down to St Pete to pick up something I’ve wanted for a very long time...
 

0D9DCB4B-A618-4599-8246-17B8ECCC717D.thumb.jpeg.1a38a4d4dc8f69b7d645a8e5b4a624c4.jpeg

 

My very own Roystonea! I can say without a doubt they are my favorite palm, and I miss seeing them all the time from my short residency in Fort Myers. 
 

I believe I paid a very pair price for it, it’s at least 9 feet tall without the pot. I just hope I’ll be able to figure something out this winter to give it some protection, and not throw my $140 away...lol. 
 

If anybody has any tips or experience from growing Royals in marginal areas, I would love to hear them. I’ll be planting it in my backyard— receiving southern exposure and a wind break (for now...) from the house. 

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kinzyjr

@JASON M Sounds like you have the southern exposure and windbreak in place (at least to the north).  A few questions:

  • Is there anything to protect it from the west winds?
  • Is there any canopy in the area to protect from frost?

Just so you know what you're up against and why you may want to consider additional passive and active protection:

Jan_2010_OCALA_FL.png

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aztropic

Do you see any other royals planted around where you live? If you're in Ocala,I suspect it will freeze and die over the next winter.Best advice is enjoy it until December and pray for more global warming.

 

aztropic

Mesa,Arizona

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JASON M
55 minutes ago, kinzyjr said:

@JASON M A few questions:

  • Is there anything to protect it from the west winds?
  • Is there any canopy in the area to protect from frost?

Just so you know what you're up against and why you may want to consider additional passive and active protection:

My current placement idea has the palm in roughly the center of the backyard.. 10-15ft north east of the shed. If I relocate the palm further south to be due east of the shed, am I losing some of the northern protection from being further from the house? My entire property is only about .21 acres for reference. 

 

52 minutes ago, aztropic said:

Do you see any other royals planted around where you live? If you're in Ocala,I suspect it will freeze and die over the next winter.Best advice is enjoy it until December and pray for more global warming.

 

aztropic

Mesa,Arizona

I have not seen any mature royals in Ocala since I have been here (2 years). That being said, I almost ejected out of the seat of my car when I saw somebody was growing a juvenile in their front yard about 12 miles south of me. The homeowner had the palm wrapped up when I would drive by in these last few cool months. I just drove by last week and the palm is looking well. Guessing, I would say their palm is 1-2 feet shorter than mine.

The nearest mature royals I know of are in Yelaha, which is 44 miles southeast from me. Located inside the courtyard of a resort, they surely have protection from all fronts. They looked incredible when I saw them in Sept 2019. Driving south on US 41 past Brooksville I noticed some mature royals as well. 

44E88BD9-BF52-41E2-94BC-D9D58EE8E42A.jpeg

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palmsOrl

I'm impressed Jason!  Ammend the surrounding soil with good rich soil, water and feed liberally, and get a torpedo heater (or smudge pot) for it for nights much below 30F.  The way I see it, if one has one special out of zone palm, it is worth the effort to provide supplemental heat, etc., to keep it from freezing and it will in Ocala without supplemental heat.

Can't wait to see it in the ground.

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palmsOrl
1 hour ago, kinzyjr said:

@JASON M Sounds like you have the southern exposure and windbreak in place (at least to the north).  A few questions:

  • Is there anything to protect it from the west winds?
  • Is there any canopy in the area to protect from frost?

Just so you know what you're up against and why you may want to consider additional passive and active protection:

Jan_2010_OCALA_FL.png

Yeah, that would do it^^^

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JASON M
6 minutes ago, palmsOrl said:

I'm impressed Jason!  Ammend the surrounding soil with good rich soil, water and feed liberally, and get a torpedo heater (or smudge pot) for it for nights much below 30F.  The way I see it, if one has one special out of zone palm, it is worth the effort to provide supplemental heat, etc., to keep it from freezing and it will in Ocala without supplemental heat.

Can't wait to see it in the ground.

Thanks for the positive words. I’m very excited for it! I also appreciate and acknowledge the climate data, it helps me know what to expect and how to be proactive with protection.

How should I handle watering in the dry season? I’ve been to Fakahatchee and seen royals in their very swampy habitat. My backyard drains very well with the sandy soil and ever so gently sloping downwards to the west.

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kinzyjr
7 minutes ago, JASON M said:

My current placement idea has the palm in roughly the center of the backyard.. 10-15ft north east of the shed. If I relocate the palm further south to be due east of the shed, am I losing some of the northern protection from being further from the house? My entire property is only about .21 acres for reference. 

Looks like you may have a conundrum to solve.  Ideally, cold tender palms would stand the best chance on ground slightly higher than the ground around it with canopy and very close to the house and other structures that break the wind from the north and the northwest.  The additional heat released from the wall of the house and the canopy help a lot on radiational freeze nights, and the windbreaks help on the advective freeze nights that typically come without frost.  The issue with something as massive as a royal is the fronds coming down on the roof or, worse yet, the entire weight of the palm on the roof during a hurricane.  Looking at the weather records for 2010 in my previous post, even with good siting, you'll need to use Christmas lights and crown wrapping - or some other type of protection - if that type of weather returns.

Some examples of brave souls who have Royals right next to their house here:

Roystonea regia - Coventry and Edgewood - Lakeland, FL

Roystonea regia - Clubhouse Road (~250ft above sea level) - Lakeland, FL

In your case, if there is any canopy on the property I would probably put it under the canopy since most of the freezes we get are radiational.  If you can have it near a fence or other structure to cut the wind some it will help.  At the same time, I wouldn't agonize too much over placement as this will be a difficult palm to protect when it reaches maturity.

Hope this helps.  Enjoy the palm!  They are wonderful specimen plants.

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RedRabbit

Best of luck. They're not reliable much further north than me so it'll be quite a feat if you're able to grow one all the way up there in Ocala.

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palmsOrl

Jason, I would just be prepared to provide supplemental irrigation year round except for during wet periods.  As mentioned, they are water hogs.  

For nights much below 30F and I would assume 4-8 per year in an average year, I would look into something like this.  I know it's a lot of trouble, but it's just one palm and think about how rewarding it will be to grow one to maturity in your locale.

https://www.ebay.com/p/182410035?iid=333550873021&chn=ps&norover=1&mkevt=1&mkrid=711-117182-37290-0&mkcid=2&itemid=333550873021&targetid=885626231188&device=m&mktype=pla&googleloc=9011742&poi=&campaignid=9423620631&mkgroupid=95235886026&rlsatarget=pla-885626231188&abcId=1141016&merchantid=6296724&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI5_7crNqM6QIVDcDICh2W5QmsEAQYBCABEgI7AvD_BwE

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palmsOrl

Btw, the above suggestion for the heater is for when the Palm gets to big to wrap.  Actually looking at it's current size, I would wrap it next winter and get the kerosene heater for subsequent winters.

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GottmitAlex

Are royals as cold-sensitive as Coconuts?

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aztropic
34 minutes ago, GottmitAlex said:

Are royals as cold-sensitive as Coconuts?

No.Mature trees will usually survive a mid 20's freeze,although completely defoliate.Younger trees have less mass to work with, and may be killed outright.

aztropic

Mesa,Arizona

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GottmitAlex
31 minutes ago, aztropic said:

No.Mature trees will usually survive a mid 20's freeze,although completely defoliate.Younger trees have less mass to work with, and may be killed outright.

aztropic

Mesa,Arizona

Got it. And I just read the temp chart.  It's not about the plant, it's about the location. January alone will decimate it. 

Thank you

Alex

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JASON M
9 hours ago, kinzyjr said:

Looking at the weather records for 2010 in my previous post, even with good siting, you'll need to use Christmas lights and crown wrapping - or some other type of protection - if that type of weather returns.

I wouldn't agonize too much over placement as this will be a difficult palm to protect when it reaches maturity.

Hope this helps.  Enjoy the palm!  They are wonderful specimen plants.

Unfortunately, the only tree/canopy in my yard is in the front and the ground around it gets very very dry. I don't think there would be a chance. If I could get by with Christmas lights and a way to wrap the crown for a 2010 winter, I'll be golden.

8 hours ago, palmsOrl said:

Jason, I would just be prepared to provide supplemental irrigation year round except for during wet periods.  As mentioned, they are water hogs.  

For nights much below 30F and I would assume 4-8 per year in an average year, I would look into something like [kerosene heater].  I know it's a lot of trouble, but it's just one palm and think about how rewarding it will be to grow one to maturity in your locale.

Luckily, I have a well so I don't have to worry about a water bill. Would it make a difference to try and alter the immediate terrain to try to collect more water in the placement spot? If that makes sense. I think I can manage protection for less than 2 cumulative weeks through the year!

 

I want to thank everyone for the support and ideas for success. I can't wait to plant it!

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bubba

It may be pushing the edges for a Royal in Ocala, Fl. That stated, I checked a weather underground Ocala site and found in Jan. 2020 that the Max was 85.8 F, Median was 58.8 F. with one day below freezing (30.2 F.). Royals are grown in many areas with these numbers.

Remember Bartram sketched the first Royal Palm in Florida in the 1700's at a location at the edge of Marion (Ocala) and Volusia County. Push those edges Jason!

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Jimbean

See what happens.  I suspect that it will not be there for more than five years.   Best bet would be underneath a canopy of live oaks, and take good care of it so it is healthy and has some good growth to compensate.  

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PalmTreeDude

It will be a good experiment, who knows, there could be a string of mild winters or it could just die outright the first winter. 

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howfam
On 4/28/2020 at 8:41 PM, JASON M said:


Hey there everyone. My husband has a pickup truck rental right now (long story short) and I jumped on the opportunity to drive down to St Pete to pick up something I’ve wanted for a very long time...
 

0D9DCB4B-A618-4599-8246-17B8ECCC717D.thumb.jpeg.1a38a4d4dc8f69b7d645a8e5b4a624c4.jpeg

 

My very own Roystonea! I can say without a doubt they are my favorite palm, and I miss seeing them all the time from my short residency in Fort Myers. 
 

I believe I paid a very pair price for it, it’s at least 9 feet tall without the pot. I just hope I’ll be able to figure something out this winter to give it some protection, and not throw my $140 away...lol. 
 

If anybody has any tips or experience from growing Royals in marginal areas, I would love to hear them. I’ll be planting it in my backyard— receiving southern exposure and a wind break (for now...) from the house. 

If its any inspiration, there are Royals even as far north in Florida as Jacksonville. I first posted these royals in Dec. 2012. The owner says he planted them around 2000 as very small plants. He's located near a creek off the St.  Johns River. He said they took a beating in the early years but became tougher as they became established. So, microclimate (near the water), and establishment (in ground for 20 years now) are the key elements to success of Royals out of their normal range. Photo from 2018./ howfam

IMG_1313.JPG

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ck_in_fla

I have reported on my Roystonea regis here in Winter Springs which is one of the Northern suburbs of Orlando, Florida.  This particular tree was planted as a seedling in April of 2001.  So, it has been in the ground for 19 years.  It started to bloom year before last but the blooms did not mature and fell off (much to my disappointment).

The story of this tree has been chronicled in this forum.  But, briefly, it is from seed from one of the surviving trees in St. Petersburg, FL.  The parent tree was one of many that were planted along a street in St. Petersburg in the late 1930's or early 1940's.  Over the years, some of the trees succumbed to factors including cold weather.  So, the thought here is that the surviving trees had some genetic factors that included cold resistance.  I protected this tree when it was very small.  But, once it got too large to protect, it was on its own.

As you can see by the attached image, it now towers over my home.  And, it looks like it may be setting seed soon.

I have had some humorous incidents with fronds falling.  One hit my roof with a loud "thud".  Another one brushed against a window as it came down.  Of course, these fronds are huge.  I drag them to the curb, cut off what will fit in the bin and then hope the trash company will take them on lawn clipping day.  Until you see one of these on the ground, you really can't appreciate the size.

I am starting to see more of these in my area.  But, none even close to the size of this one.  It is probably around 40 feet tall right now.

 

Royal Palm Blooming 2020 07 11.jpg

Toyal Palm 2020 07 11.JPG

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howfam
On 5/1/2020 at 8:54 AM, howfam said:

If its any inspiration, there are Royals even as far north in Florida as Jacksonville. I first posted these royals in Dec. 2012. The owner says he planted them around 2000 as very small plants. He's located near a creek off the St.  Johns River. He said they took a beating in the early years but became tougher as they became established. So, microclimate (near the water), and establishment (in ground for 20 years now) are the key elements to success of Royals out of their normal range. Photo from 2018./ howfam

IMG_1313.JPG

Here are updated pictures of the Royals shown above here in Jacksonville, now 20 yrs old. Pictures taken last Sunday 7/26/20. Total of 3 Royal Palms, tallest in the bottom picture near the swimming pool.

20200726_175056 (1).jpg

20200726_175506 (1).jpg

Edited by howfam
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JASON M

Beautiful! Inspiring for sure. He’s been doing really well this summer, hoping it’s a running start to get established.

Here is my Royal today (8/1/2020):

EFDEB961-A9DB-4DF3-8ED2-4F3039DD8E5A.thumb.jpeg.78c72fce9351d397bc625f875e79c615.jpeg

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howfam
17 hours ago, JASON M said:

Beautiful! Inspiring for sure. He’s been doing really well this summer, hoping it’s a running start to get established.

Here is my Royal today (8/1/2020):

EFDEB961-A9DB-4DF3-8ED2-4F3039DD8E5A.thumb.jpeg.78c72fce9351d397bc625f875e79c615.jpeg

Jason M: Nice Royal. Is it in Ocala? If so, what kind of protection do you use, or what microclimate do you have : tree canopy, near water etc.?

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JASON M
29 minutes ago, howfam said:

Jason M: Nice Royal. Is it in Ocala? If so, what kind of protection do you use, or what microclimate do you have : tree canopy, near water etc.?

Thanks! I am in NW Ocala (county) so any heat island does not affect me. I put it in the ground back in May, so it hasn't taken any of our winters yet. It's basically in the center of my backyard, between the edge of the house and the fence. We don't have any bodies of water in the immediate vicinity. There is no canopy above it, but hopefully being south of the house it will help even just a little with wind break. I am definitely brainstorming what I plan to do this winter for protection. The lack of micro climate is stacking the odds against it, but I am determined. I'm not sure if wrapping up the fronds in a frost blanket will be enough, or if I need to bring out the big guns and design an enclosure!

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howfam
14 hours ago, JASON M said:

Thanks! I am in NW Ocala (county) so any heat island does not affect me. I put it in the ground back in May, so it hasn't taken any of our winters yet. It's basically in the center of my backyard, between the edge of the house and the fence. We don't have any bodies of water in the immediate vicinity. There is no canopy above it, but hopefully being south of the house it will help even just a little with wind break. I am definitely brainstorming what I plan to do this winter for protection. The lack of micro climate is stacking the odds against it, but I am determined. I'm not sure if wrapping up the fronds in a frost blanket will be enough, or if I need to bring out the big guns and design an enclosure!

Well , being in the middle of the backyard, unless the house is 2-storey, the house won't provide too much of a wind break. Sounds like the last option, the  enclosure would be the most effective. In fact, with the palms I posted above, here in Jacksonville, the owner says he made enclosures for them the 1st few years, and then they got too big to protect, but became established enough to let them go. Well,  20 yrs in the ground in Northeast Fla. , I'd say is a success story. Good luck. /howfam

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PalmatierMeg

Beautiful palm, Jason

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Gingaman

Hi Jason, good luck with your Roystonea!

I'm in St Petersburg and while it is warmer here it's always good to push the zone.  I make my own backyard firepits/heaters by making a mold out of plywood and pour in concrete and a bit of rebar.  My current firepit is made with walls of 4 and 5 inches thick and looks like a cube that is about 2' by 2' by 2'.   You can even put dyes or tints in the cement.  

Now realize, this is very very heavy; several hundred pounds!  Make sure you can move it when you are done.  The benefit is that with the walls being so thick it makes an incredible heatsink which in turn radiates all that stored heat throughout the night.  If it drops down to the low 30's, we light a fire that night and let it heat up.  The next morning at 6am if you place your hand on the sides it is still quite warm.  I find it makes a noticeable difference and you can create several and smaller ones to place strategically in the jungle.  

 

Firepit Construction.jpg

Firepit 2018.jpg

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JASON M
2 hours ago, PalmatierMeg said:

Beautiful palm, Jason

Thanks a lot, Meg! I think I really fell in love with Roystonea during my short time in Lee county. 

25 minutes ago, Gingaman said:

Hi Jason, good luck with your Roystonea!

I'm in St Petersburg and while it is warmer here it's always good to push the zone.  I make my own backyard firepits/heaters by making a mold out of plywood and pour in concrete and a bit of rebar.  My current firepit is made with walls of 4 and 5 inches thick and looks like a cube that is about 2' by 2' by 2'.   You can even put dyes or tints in the cement. 

Very cool idea!! I will definitely keep this in mind as my yard transforms from plants surrounded by open space, to open space surrounded by plants! Knowing myself I’m going to be cuckoo for coconuts!! 

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NickJames
On 4/28/2020 at 9:03 PM, kinzyjr said:

@JASON M Sounds like you have the southern exposure and windbreak in place (at least to the north).  A few questions:

  • Is there anything to protect it from the west winds?
  • Is there any canopy in the area to protect from frost?

Just so you know what you're up against and why you may want to consider additional passive and active protection:

Jan_2010_OCALA_FL.png

So I was going through old photos of mine and saw this chart again and I thought I would share these photos taken in Downtown Jacksonville on 1/10/10. 
 

How long ago it feels now...but this was ice on Friendship Fountain at 3 p.m. that day. It stayed so cold that day that it never melted. I imagine the water is also treated with a sanitation agent so it’s not just straight water, either. 
 

Wishing for @JASON M and my sake that this kind of cold doesn’t come back for a long time!

C548FBEF-638D-473B-B4D9-821CF438FA14.jpeg

F15FBB20-E89A-4F70-A6DD-55DBE92F4997.jpeg

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JASON M
3 minutes ago, NickJames said:

How long ago it feels now...but this was ice on Friendship Fountain at 3 p.m. that day. It stayed so cold that day that it never melted. I imagine the water is also treated with a sanitation agent so it’s not just straight water, either. 
 

Wishing for @JASON M and my sake that this kind of cold doesn’t come back for a long time!

Yikes! I’ve woken up to frost on the ground but I can’t imagine an icicle forming letting alone lasting all day. 
 

I’m definitely up to the challenge when it comes to protection. Back when I first joined PT, there was this one guy on here who lived about an hour away from me in Milwaukee (5B). He built enclosures around the 2 trachycarpus in his front yard, and went to great extremes to keep these palms alive. He did so successfully for a number of years!

 

Regardless, I don’t need to feel 19 degrees around here anytime soon!

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akamu

Maybe try a roystonea borinquena they seem to do better with our Winters here when we get unusual cold snaps. The leaf bases are not as heavy as regia and inflict much less damage below Here is a picture of mine 

15965044503566779446699087142336.jpg

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