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tlow

Backyard paradise in North Texas

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tlow

So I've been lurking here and getting involved periodically but haven't officially gotten a chance to say hello.  We're just north of Dallas and build our dream pool and backyard last year (still have more to do) and with that, I've always wanted palms.. We are new to Texas, and where we're from (IL) we'd never be able to have much of anything... so here we are!  We have a little bit of land so I'm doing my best to add palms where possible.  This will serve as my official progress thread as well.

We finished the pool in October, and originally planted five Windmills and three Sabal Texana (small size).  Lost one windmill during the storm, jury still out on the Texana.

Pool area to enjoy the summer heat.  Trachy on the right of picture, and there are five Chamaerops humilis before the waterfall.  They're young but we're patient to watch them grow.  Trachy looks rough but growing a new spear so think we're good.

 

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Pygmy Date Palm poolside

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Rest of the Trachys.  They took a beating but appear to be doing fine now.

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Small Sabal Birmingham

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We cleared out a bunch of stuff from the back of our property that gets great sun and put down 2x Sabal Birminghams and 2x W. Robustas.

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3x Pindos, 3x Sabal Majors

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Pindo and filiferas

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Edited by tlow
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Swolte

Great, I like the slope on the property. Has a lot of potential for making some winding paths with palms on each side! Looking forward to see what you do with it!
:)

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Chad king NC

Love the pool.  Hope the palms bounce back for you this summer.  Would be a shame to lose anymore.

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tlow
18 hours ago, Swolte said:

Great, I like the slope on the property. Has a lot of potential for making some winding paths with palms on each side! Looking forward to see what you do with it!
:)

Thanks!  It used to be a total mess until we bought it, and I spent nearly every weekend for the last year clearing, pruning, removing the dense crap and burning it all.  It's been a LOT of work but we're at the point where I'm planting and by chance my wife is good with palms... win-win!

18 hours ago, Chad king NC said:

Love the pool.  Hope the palms bounce back for you this summer.  Would be a shame to lose anymore.

Thanks!  It sure would.  Two of the windmills are visibly moving upward, I can see green on the fronds\spears pushing.  Two others are just staying still, or close to it, and haven't kick started yet.  I recognize it's still early but I can't wait for the sun to get here.  I'm excited to see the progress of the S. Birminghams over the years.  I am going to have six in total.

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Jimhardy

Those Robusta will be fun to watch,they grow so fast!

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tlow
1 hour ago, Jimhardy said:

Those Robusta will be fun to watch,they grow so fast!

They aren't my first choice given the weather and if it does dip into the teens I'll need to protect them, and they are at the BACK of my property.. heh.. they may end up fending for themselves.  We'll see but they will get plenty of sun down there.  I'm excited to watch them rocket.

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Jimhardy

One thing thats nice with the Washys is you can use minimal protection efforts and as long as 

they are alive they will regrow their leaves pretty fast,esp where you are..my Robusta would put out like 15 leaves

in a season, more then enough to "party on  Garth"

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tlow
7 minutes ago, Jimhardy said:

One thing thats nice with the Washys is you can use minimal protection efforts and as long as 

they are alive they will regrow their leaves pretty fast,esp where you are..my Robusta would put out like 15 leaves

in a season, more then enough to "party on  Garth"

We are thrilled to have all of these around the property so I will have plenty to document... looking forward to it.  I'm germinating a bunch of things too like Chilean Wine Palm (crossing my fingers) and others so I'm going to make use of our land for palms...

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tlow

Alright so an update on my Texas Sabals... I had three and one was the most developed with it pushing a nice big frond right before the freeze.  The other two were just fronds (not strap leaves but fronds so these must be a few years old at least).  Nothing was coming out of the center.  These were all planted in October...

This was the one pushing the spear.. optimistic on this one as it's now fanning out, and during the freeze and right after, that was a tight spear, not it's fanning... I marked it so I know for sure.  The spear right behind it you can see if getting taller... WOOT!!  I'm so stoked.

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These two I'm less optimistic about, but the fronds are still super strong, no wiggling, no pulling, nothing.  I'm "hoping"... hoping... most of it was underground and maybe got through.  They weren't pushing anything to begin with so I am leaving these alone all summer.

This first one, when I look inside of the hole, I have been noticing something getting closer to the top.  It doesn't look like a spear but it's like fiber type material but it goes around the whole center.  I'm puzzled, but clearly, something is coming.. I'm praying it's going to pop a spear here soon.  I'm cautiously optimistic on this one.  Again, the fronds are tight and feel rigid.

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It's hard to see, but you can see the little stringy type material coming up in the center if you look hard enough. It's progressively gotten higher up and it's damn near close to being at the surface so I reckon I'll know shortly.

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This one has always looked rough and again, feels tight, rigid, figure these two fronds will die but hoping it pushes something out for me here shortly.. I'm being patient as these are supposed to be super slow growing.. the Texas summer should give me an indication if these are alive or not.  This one looks the worst out of the three so we'll see.  While I don't see the same stringy type thing coming up from the center, I've periodically tried to put my finger in there, and it seems like there is less depth that I can go in, so clearly, I think, it's pushing SOMEHING up.....   Fingers crossed y'all for all three to recover.

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tlow

OK so just a little update here on events transpiring over the weekend.  On the worst looking Sabal Texana (above) I have excavated it carefully, observed a huge, healthy looking root system that wouldn't even fit in a 5G container (diameter wise) and replaced it with a brand new Texana.  Looks great and can't wait to see this one start taking off.

Sabal Texana

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Here is the previous inhabitant.. huge root system as mentioned and while above ground looks sad and depressing, it's moved to a club med location just down the hill a bit where there's plenty of sun and will get indefinite time to show me whether there is life or not....  Who knows, maybe it'll surprise me and push out a spear.

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Blue Java Banana already on its third leaf... this thing is going to be huge by the time summer is finished!

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tlow

Because I should document my Chamaerops humilis as well.. Hoping these start growing a bit more with the sun and good weather coming our way.  They were bought as 2yr seedlings and have been in the ground for exactly a month now.  New spears have emerged from them all, so I'm taking that as a great start.

Group of five behind our waterfall.

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tlow

Quick update for the week..

My largest S. Mexicana looks to have weathered the storm and is pushing out the big frond that was half out during the storm and really showing that nice beautiful next spear right behind it.. awesome!  The other two haven't done much but they weren't doing much to begin with after being planted in October.  I'm giving them a while yet to show me anything.

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Two of my T. Fortunei are rockin' with half green fronds pushing quickly, and a full (in one case, two) new tight green fronds that are coming from the heart so we're good there.  Two have just not done much so I decided to do some investigating.  One that isn't picture here is all white, looks awful and had two big fronds exposed in the storm, totally white and look bad so I figured I would peroxide it and it foamed like crazy but has started foaming less.  I marked it, and actually the mark has changed so maybe we'll get some progress out of this one too.

This last one had no spear pull or anything, and I didn't see anything coming up so I moved the stuff around that was blocking what looks like a brand new spear.  Again, nothing is pulling on this one, fronds and I can't pull this little guy out so I marked it, got some of the burlap type material out of the way so it can get sun, and gave it a little peroxide for good measure, no reaction.  I marked it, and I swear it moved, but it's probably just my mind playing tricks on me.  Waiting for it to really pop above that mark in a decided fashion.  Once these two recover and move, I will be happy post storm, these are my only two wild cards.

 

 

 

 

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tlow

Good news is the S. Mexicana is showing signs of pushing that spear, and fanning out... WOOHOO!

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tlow

I picked up a T. Fortunei Bulgaria and plopped it in the back triangle of the corner of my lot..

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Palm corner...

Butia capitata on the left, Trachy Fortunei Bulgaria in the middle, and Sabal Major bottom right.  Getting needle palms tomorrow and will put one in the front right behind the grass to make a nice little area.  North Texas soil BLOWS!!!  So much amending necessary.. ugh.

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tlow

So the Trachys are rocking and rolling still.. wow the growth is incredible to watch, even the ones that have white rotting flesh, they're pushing and judging by my marks, they're pushing quick.  I'm actually pretty confident the four will all make a recovery.  How will this trunk look?  Odd?  When will it fill back in and look normal'ish?  One of them didn't get cut and that's the one pushing white stuff up at a quick clip and I felt today there's a spear in there, not rotten that's coming up with it... yay!

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The backup squad arrived today... I got four Trachy Fortunei in the event these didn't make it.. I'll keep them around a few weeks until we're confident but @Collectorpalms these are the Home Depot 2 pack.. not bad, arrived quick and look great.. 

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I'll be spending the next few weeks clearing out our woods at the back of the property, and finding spots for everything else.. Here is the stock so far hanging out in our fenced in 1000 sqft garden.

3x Needles

1x S. Louisiana

4x T. Fortunei

1x W. Robusta

4x W. Filiferas

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Planted this one the other day... just got it.. S. Louisiana.. the blue underside of the strap leaves is incredible when the sun hits it!  Can't wait to watch this one grow up

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Already has a leaf with 5 fingers

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Here's a needle I put in the ground the other day

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Today I put in a S. Minor var Emerald Island.. Can't wait to see this one in a few years.. before the animal protection cages went up.  I literally have one of these around EVERY single young palm as something (my guess is a squirrel) has chewed up some in the past, so since these have gone up, nothing has happened.. ugh, what a pain!

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Clearing out this back area, but have another 5x S. Minors coming this week that will go in various spots.. I got spots in the front of the property as well that need some nice palms as well!

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Swolte

Thanks for posting. Great to start with a blank slate!

How do you determine placement of palms? I couldn't do it the way you are when everything is just still so barren. Do you have a masterplan of sorts? 

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tlow
9 hours ago, Swolte said:

Thanks for posting. Great to start with a blank slate!

How do you determine placement of palms? I couldn't do it the way you are when everything is just still so barren. Do you have a masterplan of sorts? 

Well I have a blank slate, but it wasn't always a blank slate..  Here are some pictures from last February before we even owned the place officially.. we have hundreds if not thousands of post oaks on the property, lots of elms and in this back area it was unwalkable with those as well as the junipers.  Just awful.. probably why the place sat around on the market for a little bit but with about now a years worth of cleaning up the woods, property at large, removing about 25 oaks from the vicinity of the house, building our dream pool and backyard, now it's like a new world here.  Long story short, I'm still clearing the back area whenever I have free time and am outside.  My wife has just given me control of this big back area which butts up against the nature trail so I'm thinking of putting some of these S. Minors along the back property line if you will to, in time, create that natural hedge or a view blockage up toward the house.  Right now I have a Robusta, and two S. Birminghams along the back property line but with discovering S. Minors and their affinity to grow in even standing water, or poor conditions, they would be great along some of these depressed spots that water tends to channel through.

Here is what this area looked like while I was here for the inspection last spring.  This is from the middle of the back property, looking back toward the same area you see above.

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There are just a few trees down there which were good enough to keep, either living or had good structure so there's plenty of mostly sun areas with patchy shade from them throughout the day... ie... room for palms! 

We're also about to embark on phase two of the backyard which includes our structure, outdoor kitchen, etc but getting a new retaining wall and actually having landscaping around the house.  Right now it's old cinder blocks and weeds!  Easy to maintain, hah.  I'm stocking up on some of these palms to put throughout that as well.  I've got big plans and they involve palms.  My wife already threw her hands up in the air and gave up on this, hah.

I'm open to ideas if anyone has any!

Edited by tlow
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Jimhardy

Everything is looking good...nice recovery there too!

If they grow well this year and next you will have a hard time even

finding where they were trunk cut as they do grow out of it quickly

once they get some leaves up, they will look a little stunted at first

but it is actually a nice compact look until leaves recover to full size

which they should easily have done by mid to late summer :greenthumb:

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