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Motlife

Separating queen palms

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Motlife

Hi all

 

I rescued a few queen palms about 2 years ago that were pretty neglected. When I repotted them, I put the 2 smallest ones into a pot together, and they've both taken off and are growing well now. How risky would it be to split them up and repot them individually? I am in NZ so it is the middle of summer so am thinking of doing it fairly soon. They're about 2.5m tall or so from the bottom of the pot. A pic is attached.

 

One of the other ones I rescued is growing well, but is quite wobbly in its container. It was in a bit of a wind tunnel area for a while, so maybe it had some damage from getting blown around a bit? I've got it in a more sheltered spot now. Any advice on ways to help it - should I stake it for a while or is it likely to heal up as it grows?

 

Thanks in advance!

IMG_20220102_205008.jpg

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oasis371

Your twin Queen looks like it could be separated without much trauma.  Use a sterile, sharp knife and cut through the root mass.  Try not to PULL but rather CUT through the roots. Do this in a relatively shaded area and also keep them in a relatively sheltered site (from both sun and wind).  Go easy on the watering initially. They should be good to go within two weeks. I bungee mine to surrounding structures (railings, fences, etc).  Also would refrain from feeding right away as roots are recuperating. Good luck!

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Motlife

Thanks very much - I'll give it a go and keep my fingers crossed!

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oasis371

Are you going to eventually transplant these into the ground? They should be hardy for you in your area. They are very tolerant to chilly conditions but are not known for wind resistance.

I have four of these that I protect from my subarctic winters. We love'em during the long, subtropical summers here, then I move my into a big garage.

 

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Motlife

I will plant them in the ground eventually, but I'm currently renting so they'll have to wait another couple of years in pots! They do grow well here and there are plenty around, they're a beautiful tree. 

Where I am isn't a particularly windy place, for New Zealand at least, but the trouble was that I had one down the driveway and the wind funnelled down it and knocked it over a couple of times - that's the one that I said felt a bit wobbly. The double planted one was next to it but never fell and is doing fine. The wobbly one looks fine too, and it's pushing out new frond at the moment, so hopefully all will be well. 

I'm very glad I don't have to do too much to protect things here! We're probably at about the same latitude, but we don't get much below -1C or so which saves a lot of hassle!

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Merlyn

FWIW - I agree with @oasis371. I separated a Majesty triple the same way, using a razor sharp kukri knife to slice straight down between the trunks.  Mine were much closer together than your two queens, three palms squished together in a 3 gallon pot.  Mine were just a little stunted in growth for 2 to 3 months.  The setback was probably about the same as transplant shock.

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Motlife

Thanks for that. I've just separated them today by cutting down the middle with a sharp knife and repotting them into the same sized pot they were already in. Hopefully all goes well!

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