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stopsail

Too much Water

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stopsail

Looking for some help,  I live in Topsail Beach NC, I planted two Sabel Palms in Dec of 2020. One has lived, one died and I had it replaced and now it has died.  The company that I purchased them from and installed them said I am over watering them, I think I am underwatering them.  They are planted in 100% sand and are about 12-15 ft tall. I have been watering them with drip irrigation on odd days for the first few weeks then, twice a week after that. I water for 1 hour so they are getting about 50 gallons each.  The 2nd Palm died in less than 2 months.  Thanks Dave

 

 

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OC2Texaspalmlvr

Welcome to palm talk !!! So I'll start with, pics would help tremendously. What did the dying palms look like when they were considered deceased ? Were these regenerated sabals ? I have never gardened in sand only so I can't say if that's overwatering or not. I'm sure some of the Floridians could chime in on that. The fact that one palm is doing fine and lost 2 in the other spot makes me think there not getting the same amount of water. Still hard to say tho. Wish I could help more but definitely more pieces to this puzzle. 

T J 

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redant

From my understanding, sabels taken from marshy wet area's need the same, those take from sands dry, need the same. Find out what they came from.

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Alan_Tampa

how deep was it buried? And I can't see overwatering a sabal. it would be really hard to do.

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Looking Glass

That soil….   Or should I say, sand.  I’d venture to say, you could put 1,000 gallons into that and it would be bone dry in 1 day.   Did you do a lot of amending?  In sand like that, I’d water every morning or more if it’s hot out.   Frequency over volume.  It won’t hold any water.   I’d do that for quite a while before cutting back….  But it’s just a guess through.   I’ve never planted a big transplanted Sable.   Just an instinct looking at that soil.   

When I put in new stuff, I water it every day for a month to start out, unless it’s drought loving (not drought tolerant).  I’ve got dirt over a base of Florida sand. 

Isn’t water uptake and root growth an issue at first with these.   That ground looks harsh. 

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ruskinPalms

I’m thinking it was just too root damaged in 2020 when it was planted. Never established. These palms seem very adaptable to me. They can grow damn near anywhere as long as you don’t kill too many roots on the transplant. 

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ruskinPalms

Wow. Re read your original post. So you’ve planted two and they both died In the same spot? Sorry. I guess that does start to raise concerns about the soil. I don’t know much about that but there are true experts on here that I hope can help. 

Edited by ruskinPalms

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rprimbs

I have decomposed granite.  I have lost every Sabal I have attempted (4).  My impression is that they aren't the easiest palm to grow.

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sonoranfans

I seriously doubt overwatering a sabal palmetto in sand.  They grow in some really wet areas around me.  Drip irrigation in sand cannot work on a large palm without a dozen drippers.  In sand, transport of water sideways by capillary action is almost nonexistent so you get a wet narrow cylinder volume of moist sand under the dripper, much of the root diameter will not get wet.  When capillary action is poor, go with 7-14 gph microsprayers that cover a 5-6' diameter area around the palm.  I have sand in some places in my yard up to 3' deep, drippers are useless in those areas, you just need too many of them.  Drip irrigation sites(DIG?) used to have a manual on using and designing drip systems.  Drippers are super efficient in clay based slow to moderate drainage soil.  When soil drains fast they are not suitable.  I'm going to guess that unless you have poor draining soil a foot or less underneath and can see a huge wet spot around the root area after watering with 50 gallons, those sabals died due to lack of water.  But I blame the drip system, you are putting plenty of water down.  If you want to make it alot easier on yourself get some turface MVP (50lb bag per palm) and mix it in 20% in the top 3" around the palm in that 6' circle around the palm trunk.  Turface is calcined clay, it drains well but holds moisture very well and it will ensure a more consistent dry cycle when properly irrigated.  Then I would top mulch 3" and get some micro sprayers.   If you truly do flood the area to standing water, it cant be all sand in the depth.  I killed a few palms in my yard using drippers when I first moved here, its a common error in florida where the soil can be very sandy.

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Alan_Tampa

all the cut roots die anyways when damaged.  they don't branch on cut ends, they have to send out new roots.  the trunks on those are plenty big to hold a reserve of starch to sustain new growth. 

 

unless they are too deep and cannot process oxygen through the calvin cycle at night. if too deep cut off from oxygen. 

 

need to see if it is overplanted. sorry one hand typing. some soils can get away with over planting, others don't.

 

have you seen how these things are dug here? and stacked up in big piles? many make it just fine.

 

 

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Gottagrowemall

Zero doubt about it they sold it to you with a severely damaged root system or it was stressed beyond survival. I would also agree it was probably under watered.

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Alan_Tampa

were they two palms planted so that the crown height would match? 

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stopsail

I have about 10 drippers per tree, 3GPH. I have added some compost to the soil and covered the top sand with a layer of mulch.  The replacement palm is in for one week tomorrow and is doing well so far. I am watering it 15 minutes each morning.  10 X 3GPH X .25 = 7.5 gallons. So far no rain in the last week, daily temps are around 65-70F. The installer sent me a longer letter than they will not replace again (even through I purchased the warranty) because of overwatering, they said I have too many "nozzles on the drip line causing water to sit too long on the roots".  Again this is 100% sand they planted in and did not mix anything else in other than the dirt that was on the root ball of the regenerated palm.   Thanks

tree2.jpeg

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NickJames

In Florida, that would not be enough water for newly planted sabal palmetto

My only experience with sabals has been in pretty crappy, swampy soil and they probably got 300 gallons of water per day for many many weeks. (Reclaimed water so it was going to get discharged anyways)

the nursery mine were from was poorly drained and always had mud and standing water everywhere. Mine were regenerated so they’d been in the ground for a bit at the nursery so I tried to replicate as @redant was alluding to. 

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sonoranfans

15 minutes is like a grass cycle and 7.5g of water for a large palm is too little.   I would start at 45mins and water overnight, not in the morning.   Once established it can be 30 mins.  Overnight is better as there will be less evaporative losses with more time for the palm to absorb water/nutrients.  One bad thing about drippers is that if you have hard water they can get encrusted with hardness which reduces the flow rate.  Not a problem for new ones but after a few years you probably wont be getting 3 gal per dripper, might be half that with restrictions by hardness accumulation.  The much simpler solution, with better coverage in sandy soil is to go with 3-4 microsprayers at 7-14 gal/hr.  They are easier to detect when flow is reduced and you can just replace them(4 vs 12 to check and replace).  Drippers really shine in low humidity moderate to low drainage cultural environments.  Here in florida, I have found drippers make it harder to keep plants and palms happy in sandy soil.  Wetting soil is critical for nutrient uptake as moisture is required for nutrient uptake.  So any irrigation inefficiencies/dry spots will potentially stunt the palm's growth.

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