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Coasta

Protecting cycads in arizona summer

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Coasta

Hello All!!! 

I know its early but I am prepping for next summer! I am in Mesa arizona, so it gets hot here.  Recently I have purchased some encephalartos cycads and a Dioon. I have all of them in pots and have zero shade in my yard. I am going to be building a 16×16 shade area next summer and I am wondering for encephalartos what would be your opinion on the best percentage? So far I have seen 50 percent, but wondering if anyone has had any luck with a lower percent. 

As a side note, I am looking at aluminet shade cloth which acts as a mirror and reflects heat away from the shade structure. 

 

Thanks for your time! 

Edited by Coasta

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Silas_Sancona
18 minutes ago, Coasta said:

Hello All!!! 

I know its early but I am prepping for next summer! I am in Mesa arizona, so it gets hot here.  Recently I have purchased some encephalartos cycads and a Dioon. I have all of them in pots and have zero shade in my yard. I am going to be building a 16×16 shade area next summer and I am wondering for encephalartos what would be your opinion on the best percentage? So far I have seen 50 percent, but wondering if anyone has had any luck with a lower percent. 

As a side note, I am looking at aluminet shade cloth which acts as a mirror and reflects heat away from the shade structure. 

 

Thanks for your time! 

Never too early to think about summer sun protection.

Can't speak for what shade cloth %'age would be best for shading your Cycads ( @GeneAZ would have a better idea i'm sure ) but have heard a lot of good opinions regarding Aluminet. Also, thinking the %'age i used ( regular shade cloth, from Lowe's) was something in the 50-70% range for my shade house.. Worked well until this past summer. Lost a few things to sunburn i'd kept in there since 2017 when i built the structure. 

By far, the best display of Cycads i've seen personally were over at DBG. All of theirs are planted under some degree of tree canopy though. The few i have currently are kept where the sun doesn't torture them all day. My Ceratozamia hildae esp..

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Coasta

@Silas_Sancona thanks Silas for the reply!! I have to return to DBG to check those out! 

I am leaning towards a 40 percent aluminet shade structure. There is that fine line between too burning and developing healthy leaves that aren't super stretched out. 

I also imagine because aluminet has that heat reflective property that I could use 40 and be okay, but again definitely want to hear what people use. 

I always thought above 50 percent would be too much shade, but maybe that is okay for palms? 

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GeneAZ

Go for the 40%.  If you have some signs of burn in July through September, you can add individual temporary shade to the affected plants under the permanent shade that's in place.  You'll find that ferox and villosus especially will complain in 105-plus summer sun.

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Coasta

@GeneAZ thanks Gene for your advice!! Under the shade structure, would I still need to cover the pots? 

My cycad collection is growing. :)

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Meangreen94z

Dioon and most Australian Blue Cycas do well out there in little shade from what I’ve heard. Maybe shift towards that direction in future purchases. 

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GeneAZ
5 hours ago, Coasta said:

@GeneAZ thanks Gene for your advice!! Under the shade structure, would I still need to cover the pots? 

My cycad collection is growing. :)

Don't have to shade the pots as long as the sun's rays don't fall on the container.  You can always feel the outside of the pots to tell for sure.  If it's too uncomfortable to keep your hand on the pot, then the roots feel the same way inside that container.

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Coasta

@Meangreen94z i actually just purchased my first Dioon! Dioon Edule Queretaro. I absolutely love it. The color on this one and how powdery blue the leaves are Is amazing! It reminds me of how beautiful plants cycads can be. 

 

20201107_144627.thumb.jpg.21a344329681fb752c8b8651290cd742.jpg

@GeneAZ thanks Gene!!! I am going to go with a 16×16 shade structure at 40 percent aluminet most likely! 

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GeneAZ

BTW, that  Dioon Edule Queretaro can go out in full Arizona sun if planted in the ground.  Your particular specimen is a superior plant!  Very nice.

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Meangreen94z
7 hours ago, GeneAZ said:

BTW, that  Dioon Edule Queretaro can go out in full Arizona sun if planted in the ground.  Your particular specimen is a superior plant!  Very nice.

Yes, it is. Where did you find that one Coasta? If you don’t mind me asking? I’m always looking for new sources for Cycads.

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Coasta

@GeneAZ thanks Gene I am in love with this dioon!!! It will probably stay in a pot for now, and that is one i might put in the ground when I do the yard. I imagine it wont be to difficult on the cycad if I want to transplant it to another house later on. 

@Meangreen94z I purchased this plant from Rod Anderson a fellow palm talker and a local here in phoenix. I stopped by his house and he gave me a tour of what he had! 

I can't get over how much I love this color guys! 

20201109_093422.thumb.jpg.2dfedb5495cded270101afe502aa5948.jpg

Edited by Coasta

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GeneAZ
17 hours ago, Coasta said:

@GeneAZ thanks Gene I am in love with this dioon!!! It will probably stay in a pot for now, and that is one i might put in the ground when I do the yard. I imagine it wont be to difficult on the cycad if I want to transplant it to another house later on. 

@Meangreen94z I purchased this plant from Rod Anderson a fellow palm talker and a local here in phoenix. I stopped by his house and he gave me a tour of what he had! 

I can't get over how much I love this color guys! 

20201109_093422.thumb.jpg.2dfedb5495cded270101afe502aa5948.jpg

I'm afraid you have "Blue Fever."  There is no cure.

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Tracy
On 11/14/2020 at 1:08 PM, GeneAZ said:

I'm afraid you have "Blue Fever."  There is no cure.

While not a cure, there are home remedies you can use to distract yourself from the "Blue Fever"...

20200623-BH3I0369.jpg

20201102-BH3I1612.jpg

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Rod

If you love the blue, you'll really ogle over this dioon's new flush!

I call it:  Dioon edule angustifolium 'orange flame'

rod

phoenix, az

IMG_2232.thumb.JPG.89578fab3a6ffd2115103f2cbcfb8c73.JPG

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Tracy
On 11/17/2020 at 8:31 AM, Rod said:

If you love the blue, you'll really ogle over this dioon's new flush!

I call it:  Dioon edule angustifolium 'orange flame'

Yes, there are lots of directions one can go for colorful flushes with Cycads, whether Ceratozamias, Dioons, Encephalartos or Zamias.  Some will even give you a colorful flush followed by a blue leaf.  Encephalartos sclavoi is highly variable, with flushes from green, olive and rust colors.  Final leaf colors on E sclavoi can be either green or shades of blue.  An example of a very rust colored flushing E sclavoi below which unfortunately isn't a blue sclavoi; it goes from the rust into a yellow color before finally turning green as the leaflets harden off.

20190427-104A3074.jpg

20190602-104A3643.jpg

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Coasta

@GeneAZ i was afraid this would happen! I knew When I picked up my first blue cycad, I would want more! 

@Rod very nice color flush!! I love it the orange!! Such a gorgeous flush!!! 

@Tracy wow thats so interesting. Do flushes typically stay the same color each flush or can they vary? 

 

Any idea what kind of dioon this is? It almost has a sort of glimmer at certain angles. 

 

20201003_122242.thumb.jpg.f5c27e21c8546bfdc7106bc3cffa94d6.jpg

 

Edited by Coasta

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Tracy
12 hours ago, Coasta said:

@GeneAZ i was afraid this would happen! I knew When I picked up my first blue cycad, I would want more! 

@Rod very nice color flush!! I love it the orange!! Such a gorgeous flush!!! 

@Tracy wow thats so interesting. Do flushes typically stay the same color each flush or can they vary? 

 

Any idea what kind of dioon this is? It almost has a sort of glimmer at certain angles. 

 

20201003_122242.thumb.jpg.f5c27e21c8546bfdc7106bc3cffa94d6.jpg

 

Looks like a form of Dioon edule.  Typically with Encephalartos sclavoi, if you have a bronze flushing specimen, it will always flush bronze, and the same is true of the green flushing.  I have 3 specimens all in the same light,  Two flush bronze with the deeper rust colored one in my photo above, and the other is a green flushing specimen.

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Coasta

@Tracy thanks Tracy, thats good to know :). Such wealth of knowledge!

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