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Prinpalms

Will global warming make Cyrtostachys renda viable in Miami?

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Prinpalms

Cyrtostachys renda, the Red Sealing Wax Palm (also known as the Lipstick Palm) , has the well-deserved reputation of not being able to grow 'en la tierra' in Southern Florida. Notoriously cold-sensitive,

It can 'brown off' at 40 degrees F. Attached photograph shows a 10-year old plant doing quite well on Miami Beach. It has a western and southern exposure and is shielded from the north. There are two 'tall' trunks , reaching 10 feet (highest point). The palm has managed 46 degrees F with no damage. On the same evening, temperatures 1-2 miles inland (Coral Gables) were 42 degrees.  South Florida has had a long streak (?15+ years) of mild winters. I can testify to knowing of fruiting breadfruit trees 25 feet high a mile from Biscayne Bay (something unthinkable 30 years ago), anecdotal evidence of climate change. Are other enthusiasts having success with the stunning Red Sealing Wax palm in Miami and environs?  Just curious. 

IMG_1778.jpeg

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Jimhardy

If there was  GW remember that you would be under water...so no.

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Palmarum

There are collections in the Miami area that have had success with Red Sealing Wax Palms for years. Most are located in environs with varying levels of protection. It comes down to how much attention a collector is willing to provide. Damage is not always caused by a specific level of temperature exposure, there are other factors involved. I have seen specimens damaged by the low 50's°F (11°C) while others exposed to 32°F (0°C) did not have a scratch on them.

One Miami example resides in Dr. Jeff Block's collection:

Link: https://www.palmtalk.org/forum/index.php?/topic/22854-sfps-spring-garden-tour-miami-florida/&do=findComment&comment=382025

It was photographed in 2010 after one bout of severe cold earlier in the year and was flawless during the tour. It was measured at around 14 ft. (4m) in height. The palm, along with everything else in the collection, was perfectly maintained. It took at least mid 30's°F (1.6°C) without a blemish. It was one of the key surprises during the tour.

Amazing, the tour was almost eleven years ago.

A couple other successes I can think of involve specimens planted near water features, such as a canal or pond. We have had a string of decent winters, but that makes me think we may be due for a bad one at any time (crosses fingers). Every yard and 'square jungle' works differently. One collection grows everything tropical while a few blocks away, they struggle with sub-tropicals.

Ryan

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smatofu

[Will global warming make Cyrtostachys renda viable in Miami?]

Yes, for a stretch of a few warm years, but then reality will hit like 2021 freeze in Texas, and everything will be back to normal.

 

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PalmatierMeg
10 hours ago, Jimhardy said:

If there was  GW remember that you would be under water...so no.

I like your reasoning!

No Cyrtostachys will be low risk in mainland FL in any of our lifetimes. No guarantee for the Keys either.

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Xerarch
1 hour ago, smatofu said:

[Will global warming make Cyrtostachys renda viable in Miami?]

Yes, for a stretch of a few warm years, but then reality will hit like 2021 freeze in Texas, and everything will be back to normal.

 

I was going to say something similar, I'm always seeing comments on this forum like well with global warming then we probably won't see such and such temp again, or we'll probably be able to grow XYZ in the future...............I think Texas just proved that if it happened ever, it can happen again...or worse.  You're never safe from your record books.  But feel free to party on in between records.

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Stevetoad
21 minutes ago, Xerarch said:

I was going to say something similar, I'm always seeing comments on this forum like well with global warming then we probably won't see such and such temp again, or we'll probably be able to grow XYZ in the future...............I think Texas just proved that if it happened ever, it can happen again...or worse.  You're never safe from your record books.  But feel free to party on in between records.

pretty much sums it up for me. 

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OC2Texaspalmlvr
1 hour ago, Xerarch said:

I was going to say something similar, I'm always seeing comments on this forum like well with global warming then we probably won't see such and such temp again, or we'll probably be able to grow XYZ in the future...............I think Texas just proved that if it happened ever, it can happen again...or worse.  You're never safe from your record books.  But feel free to party on in between records.

Well said !!! Enjoy your warm winters and watch your zone pushes grow for the mean time haha 

T J 

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AnTonY

^^That is, unless events like in Texas represent the more temporary trend. Rather than what will be maintained with the process long-term.

Edited by AnTonY

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OC2Texaspalmlvr
1 hour ago, AnTonY said:

^^That is, unless events like in Texas represent the more temporary trend. Rather than what will be maintained with the process long-term.

I have lived in 9a Texas for 7 years now. Losing palms to uncharacteristic freezes 3 out of 7 The other 4 were 10a so I'm thinking that's the trend haha 

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Teegurr
6 hours ago, PalmatierMeg said:

I like your reasoning!

No Cyrtostachys will be low risk in mainland FL in any of our lifetimes. No guarantee for the Keys either.

Guarantee for Key West; record low there is a balmy 41 degrees.

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AnTonY
2 hours ago, OC2Texaspalmlvr said:

I have lived in 9a Texas for 7 years now. Losing palms to uncharacteristic freezes 3 out of 7 The other 4 were 10a so I'm thinking that's the trend haha 

"Long-term" as you go father and farther out into the future. There will come a time where the Arctic just isn't cold enough anymore - the same pattern set-ups that'd bring such cold freezes will end up bringing nothing more than a chilly rain at most (if even that).

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waykoolplantz

i have C Renda in the ground..by a pond as Ryan has noted.

We lost the tallest trunk during the 2010 freeze..but doin well

00399FE9-F1B4-4166-ABED-D4286A705292.jpeg

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Prinpalms

I suspect that the comments regarding Texas are true. 'Our turn is coming' here in South Florida, not to mention the summer hurricanes. Storm surges are historically common while GW is a slow-rise phenomenon . I am NOT trying to downplay the latter

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chinandega81

Not to belay your point, but as furthur anecdotal evidence there are 40 foot breadfruit trees in inland areas of Miami, well away from the beaches and bay. I created a post not too long ago documenting some of them and I also posted pics in someone else's Florida Breadfruit thread.

Anecdotally, people have planted them here for several years...I think the larger ones died back to the ground in 2010 and reprouted and grew back, those are the 40 footers today. In most years they shed cold damaged leaves in the Spring. They produce fruit annually in South Florida mainland areas. I don't know what was going on, say two decades ago...I do remember more winters with more consistent cold spells...it seems like since 2010, winters have been milder overall and that has helped ultra tropical plants in general.

There really is no way to tell or know if this is a blip on the radar, some random warming or due to global warming. When I look at temp records for Miami, there is a clear sign of warming as South Florida urbanized over time. It used to be quite common (almost annually) that we had lows in the 30s throughout our recorded history. Now it's been over a decade at MIA. That is probably because of urban development, a warming world and an overall warm pattern. I have a feeling we are still prone to what we have histoircally experienced: Zone 10 winters well into the 30s. We have just been fortunate enough to enjoy a Zone 11 climate for quite some time and we should enjoy it while it lasts. If it is the new normal, we won't know for quite some time, but we can always hope.

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smatofu

[...but as furthur anecdotal evidence there are 40 foot breadfruit trees in inland areas of Miami, well away from the beaches and bay. I...]

1. Global Warming / CO2: CO2 level in air (0.04%!!!) is a limiting factor in plants growth. 

Anybody owning a planted aquarium knows that CO2 injection creates amazing plants. I wonder if greenhouse owners inject C02?

Anyway, any increase of C02 level in the atmosphere would make oceans green, trees taller, and plants larger/greener.

2. DFW, TX area: I had small palm seedlings under my palms, maybe a hundred of them.  0% of those seedlings survived the last freeze.  Local native plants seedlings: 90% survived. 

3. [40 foot breadfruit trees in inland areas of Miami,] Planted trees. I bet they are not able to propagate naturally in this area.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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chinandega81
1 hour ago, smatofu said:

[...but as furthur anecdotal evidence there are 40 foot breadfruit trees in inland areas of Miami, well away from the beaches and bay. I...]

1. Global Warming / CO2: CO2 level in air (0.04%!!!) is a limiting factor in plants growth. 

Anybody owning a planted aquarium knows that CO2 injection creates amazing plants. I wonder if greenhouse owners inject C02?

Anyway, any increase of C02 level in the atmosphere would make oceans green, trees taller, and plants larger/greener.

2. DFW, TX area: I had small palm seedlings under my palms, maybe a hundred of them.  0% of those seedlings survived the last freeze.  Local native plants seedlings: 90% survived. 

3. [40 foot breadfruit trees in inland areas of Miami,] Planted trees. I bet they are not able to propagate naturally in this area.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I'm not an expert on their natural propagation, there are seedless varieties and I believe they grow from root suckers. That is how people locally propagate them. They sprout up on lateral roots and they are broken off with a shovel...much like how you have to separate a banana corm. Which generally don't sprout spontaneously anywhere either unless human intervention ocurrs.

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Edited by chinandega81
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chinandega81
1 hour ago, smatofu said:

[...but as furthur anecdotal evidence there are 40 foot breadfruit trees in inland areas of Miami, well away from the beaches and bay. I...]

1. Global Warming / CO2: CO2 level in air (0.04%!!!) is a limiting factor in plants growth. 

Anybody owning a planted aquarium knows that CO2 injection creates amazing plants. I wonder if greenhouse owners inject C02?

Anyway, any increase of C02 level in the atmosphere would make oceans green, trees taller, and plants larger/greener.

2. DFW, TX area: I had small palm seedlings under my palms, maybe a hundred of them.  0% of those seedlings survived the last freeze.  Local native plants seedlings: 90% survived. 

3. [40 foot breadfruit trees in inland areas of Miami,] Planted trees. I bet they are not able to propagate naturally in this area.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The main point of this thread though is that things that recently didn't survive, much less thrive, are now doing so here without any special care or protection. People used to only be able to baby breadfruits, nonis and soursop in the warmest, most protected areas near the beaches or in the Keys. Now, they do well, and fruit, anywhere in the Miami metro area. That is certainly a noticeable change, whatever the cause may be...to have fruiting ultra tropicals on mainland South Florida totally exposed and thriving. Maybe it's a fluke, maybe it's global warming, maybe it's just a warm pattern we are in the middle of the course of a few decades. It's hard to know for certain, but it certainly is a great time to attempt ultra tropicals now more than ever.

Edited by chinandega81
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smatofu
23 minutes ago, chinandega81 said:

... Maybe it's a fluke, maybe it's global warming, maybe it's just a warm pattern we are in the middle of the course of a few decades. It's hard to know for certain, but it certainly is a great time to attempt ultra tropicals now more than ever.

I think those are signs of human actions more than climate changes. When we see tropical palms growing wild in Siberia, it will be a clear indication of global warming :D

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chinandega81
4 minutes ago, smatofu said:

I think those are signs of human actions more than climate changes. When we see tropical palms growing wild in Siberia, it will be a clear indication of global warming :D

Human has obviously always spread plants. But the fact that these species were attempted recently and struggled and now they are thriving is defninantly a sign of change. Global warming doesn't mean growing citrus in Saskatchewan. Some places warm, others cool off, some will see wild extremes. It's hard to pinpoint and generalize.

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smatofu
41 minutes ago, chinandega81 said:

I'm not an expert on their natural propagation, there are seedless varieties and I believe they grow from root suckers. That is how people locally propagate them. They sprout up on lateral roots and they are broken off with a shovel...much like how you have to separate a banana corm. Which generally don't sprout spontaneously anywhere either unless human intervention ocurrs.

 

Shovels were invented maybe 200 years ago and this tree species must be older than 200 million years, so I guess the tree must have a good and very efficient way to propagate w/o people.   :D

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chinandega81
Just now, smatofu said:

Shovels were invented maybe 200 years ago and this tree species must be older than 200 million years, so I guess the tree must have a good and very efficient way to propagate w/o people.   :D

I'm pretty sure shovels were around more than 200 years ago...B) But obviosuly man spread plants that were desireable around the world. That's how we have coconuts in the Atlantic and Pacific basins. Bananas in the Americas and Africa and Asia and Australia. Mangos and avocados are pan-tropical for the same reason. 

Just because something isn't native to an area doesn't mean climate change isn't taking place. 

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smatofu
8 minutes ago, chinandega81 said:

... they are thriving...

Crabgrass is thriving in my lawn: I spray it, pull it out, and next year my lawn is covered with crabgrass again. :D

Palms are not thriving in the US. 

 

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chinandega81
4 minutes ago, smatofu said:

Crabgrass is thriving in my lawn: I spray it, pull it out, and next year my lawn is covered with crabgrass again. :D

Palms are not thriving in the US. 

 

They are in many places in the USA . Just not in Texas.

Was your yard too cold for crabgrass before? That would show a change in climate.

If you always had it,  maybe you are just a lazy gardener:lol:

Edited by chinandega81

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smatofu
18 minutes ago, chinandega81 said:

... maybe you are just a lazy gardener:lol:

Impossible! I am posting on PalmTalk.org :D

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chinandega81
9 minutes ago, smatofu said:

Impossible! I am posting on PalmTalk.org :D

Hahaha! I know, just joking!!

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palmsOrl

Well, Leu Gardens is having success with the Cyrtostachys Hybrid in Orlando and if we were getting well into the 20s F on the regular like before around 2004, that would not be a reality, because while they can clearly sail through low 30s, 25-28F would almost certainly be annihilation for the Cyrtostachys Hybrid.  Just an educated guess.

-Michael

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meridannight
2 hours ago, chinandega81 said:

Human has obviously always spread plants. But the fact that these species were attempted recently and struggled and now they are thriving is defninantly a sign of change. Global warming doesn't mean growing citrus in Saskatchewan. Some places warm, others cool off, some will see wild extremes. It's hard to pinpoint and generalize.

Or it just shows that the hardiest specimens were the ones to survive and thrive in the area.

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chinandega81
10 hours ago, meridannight said:

Or it just shows that the hardiest specimens were the ones to survive and thrive in the area.

Ultra tropicals don't have hardy specimens that can take cold, unfortunately...or else they would have been used since...well, forever in subtropical regions.

The same ones thriving in Miami now are the same varieties that have always been tried here. If it was a matter of finding "hardy" specimens, i'm sure these plants would have been found and tried and planted here decades and decades ago by Fairchild or the Tropical Research Institute.

The only difference is the climate. We no longer have seen frosts or annual dips into the 30s. We were borderline surviveable for ultra tropicals, in microclimates, a few decades ago. Now, the entire metro area can support what previously barely could survive in a local microclimate. That is obviously because of a warming climate. 

Edited by chinandega81
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DCA_Palm_Fan
On 3/25/2021 at 5:56 PM, Xerarch said:

I was going to say something similar, I'm always seeing comments on this forum like well with global warming then we probably won't see such and such temp again, or we'll probably be able to grow XYZ in the future...............I think Texas just proved that if it happened ever, it can happen again...or worse.  You're never safe from your record books.  But feel free to party on in between records.

I kind of agree but with a caveat.   FL is a different animal than TX.   Peninsular FL is surrounded by water, thus cold is moderated once it moves past the "mainland" part of north FL.  It's my view that this somewhat protects the southern half of FL from insanely cold temps / freezes like what we saw in TX  this past winter.    Texas does not have this protection and is wide open to extremely cold air masses moving south across the continental Unites states with little to no impediment / moderation.    I doubt south FL will ever see the kind of cold central TX did or even Houston.   The all time record low temp for Miami I believe is 30F.  2 degrees below freezing.   I also do not believe that the southern half of FL would ever be subjected to the same  duration of those kinds of temps either, for the same reasons.  

Are true, ultra tropical plants permanently safe in that area? Probably not.  Could you get away with growing them outdoors for years or even decades on end? probably so.    Just be prepared that there is still a chance, no matter how small, that your plants may be affected or killed by cold at some point. Either protect them, or prepare yourself to lose them.  

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bar

And don't forget that if global warming continues, you won't be able to grow ANY palms in Miami, because you  will only be able to grow aquatic plants.  Certain parts already flood regularly!

 

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palmsOrl

I believe the all-time record low for Miami proper is 26F.  If this were to occur again much of SE FL away from the immediate coast would lose most of its coconuts and the ultratropical stuff would be good be history.

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Jeff Searle

Our last bad freeze was 2010.  Many of you know me and my nursery as I was in that location for 40 years. I threw a lot of palms away after that freeze. I recorded a brief 31 degrees. 

Like death and taxes are guaranteed in life, I'm afraid we will see as another bad freeze as well.

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palmsOrl

Jeff, 

What percentage of your palm collection and inventory would you say you lost in 2010 due to the freezes and the extended cold?  Also, what low temperatures did you experience in December 2010?

-Michael

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jimmyt
On 3/25/2021 at 3:30 PM, smatofu said:

[Will global warming make Cyrtostachys renda viable in Miami?]

Yes, for a stretch of a few warm years, but then reality will hit like 2021 freeze in Texas, and everything will be back to normal.

 

Yep!  @smatofu   That freeze killed 1 Chamaerops, 1 Mule palm, 2 date palms, and 2 Washingtonia hybrids at my house.  Most of these had been in the ground for more than 10 years and had survived lesser freezes.  The dates, Mule, and one Washingtonia had heater cables on them for the freeze.   They had never seen -2.0 Fahrenheit before!  The survivors were Sabals, and one Chamaerops(barely). The last time it was that cold in my area was 1989(-3.0) F.   It will come around again I am afraid. :(

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DCA_Palm_Fan
2 hours ago, palmsOrl said:

I believe the all-time record low for Miami proper is 26F.  If this were to occur again much of SE FL away from the immediate coast would lose most of its coconuts and the ultratropical stuff would be good be history.

I looked at all modern records, the coldest temp recorded that I saw was 30F.   Do you have another source that shows the 26F recording?  That seems extreme for a zone 11 a/b to me. 

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DCA_Palm_Fan
2 hours ago, bar said:

And don't forget that if global warming continues, you won't be able to grow ANY palms in Miami, because you  will only be able to grow aquatic plants.  Certain parts already flood regularly!

 

Very true.  We have sunny day flooding here in St Pete as well.  It used to be just on super moons, but now its really any full moon combined with a high tide.  Add a little wind and its even worse.   I live on a small island in Tampa Bay.   It's height is probably 12 to 14 feet above sea level at most.  Much of it is 10 feet and under.    At the foot of the two bridges  that allow access to the north and south ends of the island, the land is maybe 3-5 feet above sea level.  The road along the bayou that runs between the north and south bridges flood regularly on sunny days.   Usually less than a foot of water, but still, its submerged for several hours at a time on those days.  This will only continue to get worse over time. 

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chinandega81

I think South Florida will always see strong cold fronts regardless of the warming world. What is different is the intensity and duration of the cold is less than what it was decades ago. I'm not sure if that's due to increased urbanization, but whatever it is, ultra tropicals only used to be grown in protected areas right by the water, and would only survive even in those areas for a handful of years. Now the same ultra tropicals can be grown anywhere in urban South Florida, unprotected, and can fruit in between "bad" winters. And those bad winters are fewer and fewer. Not to say there won't be more, but a look at records show Miami used to dip down to the 30s almost every winter in the 1950s and 1060s. Now, most winters only dip into the 40s for the minimum winter season low temp. Clearly we are warming. Ocean temps also continue to be broken in South Florida, at Virginia Key the record high ocean temp was 93 set last month. It is very common to see record warm lows, record warm waters temps, record highs....but record lows in South Florida are rarely seen. That is also a key indicator of our changing climate. Not to confuse weather and climate...but the writing is on the wall. We will still have cold spells and fronts, even strong ones, but the warming outside of those cold snaps compensates for a lof of the damage that they would otherwise cause.

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