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Darold Petty

Grand Theft Ventura

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Darold Petty

I have made so many trips up and down US 101 that my little truck knows the way.  I have favorite motels and activities at several different locales.  Years ago I collected seeds of Howea forsteriana from a tree in a Ventura park.  One of them is now ground planted in my SF garden, about four feet tall.  So naturally, I always stop at this tree to look for seeds.   Last week, upon my arrival there were not seeds, but hundreds of eophyll (first leaf) seedlings emerging through the bark mulch around the parent tree.  These have no future in situ as the gardening staff will just string trim them all down before applying a fresh layer of bark mulch.  What to do ??  One of the great benefits about getting old is that I don't give an EFF about what other people think!

  I had no tools and the tiny palms were well embedded in the decomposing mulch, resisting a gentle tug.  I purchased a weeding fork and returned, with the fork and some plastic bags.  I felt somewhat nervous, but hey, what could happen to an old, well-dressed white man in a public park ??  (sad commentary on policing and race) 

I escaped arrest, and here are the rescued seedlings.  Most of them still have the seed attached, so high probability of survival.  They have no future in my garden, but I love to grow palms from seed or small starts, and to give them away to friends and visitors to my garden.

Anyone else with a similar confession ?  :winkie:

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Chris Chance

Love it! Most I have done is picked up some seeds laying on the ground. I'm glad you escaped to freedom with your loot. 

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Palmarum

Good timing on saving the seedlings.

In most similar cases, I doubt anyone would care that you took them, (minus another palm nut that would have done the same thing). Now you know to keep your extraction tools with you. Most people don't care that much about plants to bother. If they said anything, ask if they wanted any of the seedlings, using the palms full binomial name and other info you have and they will just look confused and leave you alone. You pardoned them from a date with the weed-whacker or mower.

Ryan

 

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mike in kurtistown

Good going, both for saving the seedlings and for the forthright attitude about it.

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Fusca

Nice save Darold!  I once rescued a single Latania lontaroides seedling without tools on a trip to Florida.  Thankfully it's still alive!

My first car was a 1972 Pontiac Ventura (not from California) so after reading the title I thought someone had stolen my car!

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Silas_Sancona

When is season, ( ..and within reason < Imc, a handful or two is enough to get the ball rolling.. something Theodore Payne used to advise when discussing collecting seed from native plants.. > collect seeds just about anywhere i go.  Never have ..or ever will feel the slightest ounce of guilt doing so..

Makes no sense to let  all  the seed of something interesting go to waste, year after year.. Or the genetics of plants from specific places get completely wiped from the planet when an area is destroyed by development.  Only things i won't collect seed of:  things that are critically endangered... unless permitted.  Beyond that, 

My philosophy on the subject is simple:  Seeds are nature's gifts, ..free for anyone who wants to try and grow them..  As long as you aren't destroying the plant they're attached to in the process,  collect a few,  and enjoy the journey and lessons learned germinating them..

No harm in rescuing seedlings either when appropriate.  Darold's experience? ..Perfectly legit... and a great back story when sharing the plants you might not have the space to grow yourself with others. 

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Tyrone

Well done Darold. I once did the same thing with some Butia odorata seedlings that were getting whacked by the weed trimmer. That was in a park run by the Palm Society over here but the local council did the mowing and didn’t care less. Some of those plants made it to others gardens. 

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Gottagrowemall

I did the exact same thing with a Phoenix reclinata, CIDP, hybrid. I went at like 8:00 at night there were so many cars. I figured people would not really be too interested in what I was doing and it turned out I was right. Sadly some of those seedlings got eaten by squirrels 

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redant

A huge amount of palms in my garden came from exactly this method. You really enjoy the palms you collect from seeds or seedlings and get to watch them grow up. Unfortunately I get so many seeds from my own palms that growing some to give away has become just all to much, I winding that down. 

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Keys6505

I had been looking for a P. Reclinata for awhile.  No idea why it was hard to get my hands on one being that they're so common in FL, but I just wasn't willing to pay $50 for one on eBay.  Took my kids to Disney when COVID took a break and lo-and-behold there was a seeding Reclinata right next to the Aladdin ride.  I fought through the crowd to pick up whatever seeds I could find that weren't behind the railing.  Mickey don't F around and I'm not trying to get booted over seeds.  Luckily I walked away with a few and 2 are actively growing and just pushed through the soil this week!  Got my palm and I'll always have something to commemorate my girls' first trip to Disney.

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The Gerg

Darold,

Next time you make it to Ventura please reach out. I would love to meet my fellow palmtalkers and maybe even show them around my garden.

 

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D. Morrowii

I like to call it parking lot palm poaching, planter pirating or mulch diving lol. Several palms I have growing or have given away were acquired this way.  I hate to see them go to waste I guess. Never on private property without permission of course. 

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Kim

@Darold Petty Live long and prosper! It will be a while before those cuties begin to trunk. :D

You and anyone else, please come visit my garden in Hawaii and remove the abundant seedlings with no danger of arrest -- at least not while in my garden, not saying what happens when you try to take them home with you. 

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Darold Petty

Thanks, Kim !  

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Briank

Ah yes,  down here in San Diego I am constantly yanking out Washingtonia Robusta Seedlings in my yard, my concrete, amongst my other palms,  them little bastards keep falling from Damn tree towering in neighbors back yard.  
 

never find any CIPD ones tho as my 30’er doesn’t seem to drop any.  
 

 

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