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teddytn

Sabal hybrids?

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teddytn

Me and @tlow were just talking about this. I’ve been thinking about this for years really. I’ve got tons of other plant interests and a good deal of other plant groups hybridize in nature and cultivation ( yuccas, cactus, agaves ). Even palms for that matter, butia x jubea, jubea x butia is a common topic on PT. Everyone has heard about Sabal Birmingham and the dna test leans in the direction of an “ancient” hybrid between palmetto and minor. So to the question, is it possible to make a Sabal hybrid? Cross pollinate 2 Sabal species, grow the seeds out and see what happens. Seems like if it was possible there should be tons of Sabal hybrids for sale? Please Sabal experts enlighten the masses

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96720

What would be the reason for a hybrid most hybrids I can think of are to have a palm more cold hardy

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teddytn
1 hour ago, 96720 said:

What would be the reason for a hybrid most hybrids I can think of are to have a palm more cold hardy

Cold hardiness is a great reason to hybridize for sure. Let your imagination run wild with the possibilities. Sabal palmetto ‘Lisa’s’ leaves on a Sabal minor. Potential dwarfs of different species, not like a Sabal minor but a short or thin version or more compact crown of a tall trunking Sabal. Cross a brazoriensis back with a mexicana or palmetto try to keep that massive filifera sized trunk on a Sabal that grew as fast as a palmetto. Cross a Sabal causarium with a Sabal minor for fun, see what the offspring look like. Curious if anyone has seriously attempted to cross pollinate sabals

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Chester B

There have been posts on here of potential Sabal hybrids in Florida landscapes. The one that comes to mind is Palmetto x causiarum. If you do a search you may be able to find it. 

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teddytn
1 hour ago, Chester B said:

There have been posts on here of potential Sabal hybrids in Florida landscapes. The one that comes to mind is Palmetto x causiarum. If you do a search you may be able to find it. 

Thank you, I’ll do it 

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Phoenikakias

There are far more Sabal hybridsin cultivation, that one might think of. Problem is that a human-controlled crossing just like in the Butiinae or Phoenix is most uncertain, because Sabal as a genus is monoecious (unlike Phoenix) and flowers are always bisexual (unlike the situation in the Butiinae). For example lets say that you gather pollen from a S causiarum and you dust it on mature flowers of minor. Despite your hand pollination effort, you can not be sure, whether formed fruits and seeds are the result of self or cross pollination, at least until resulted plants grow beyond the stage of seedlings or juveniles. So no one gets in to trouble to produce such hybrids. FYI I have been told a true story by a palm expert who tried to identify many Sabal specimens in a palm collection in a famous garden in Cap Ferrat France. Not a single specimen conformed fully to the spp description of Scott Zona and the available key.

Edited by Phoenikakias
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teddytn
45 minutes ago, Phoenikakias said:

There are far more Sabal hybridsin cultivation, that one might think of. Problem is that a human-controlled crossing just like in the Butiinae or Phoenix is most uncertain, because Sabal as a genus is monoecious (unlike Phoenix) and flowers are always bisexual (unlike the situation in the Butiinae). For example lets say that you gather pollen from a S causiarum and you dust it on mature flowers of minor. Despite your hand pollination effort, you can not be sure, whether formed fruits and seeds are the result of self or cross pollination, at least until resulted plants grow beyond the stage of seedlings or juveniles. So no one gets in to trouble to produce such hybrids. FYI I have been told a true story by a palm expert who tried to identify many Sabal specimens in a palm collection in a famous garden in Cap Ferrat France. Not a single specimen conformed fully to the spp description of Scott Zona and the available key.

That makes more sense. I’ve talked to a few old timers who swear there’s at least 4 different Sabal palmetto variants. Could be explained by cross pollination from a different Sabal species. Thank you for explaining that!!

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Chester B
6 hours ago, teddytn said:

That makes more sense. I’ve talked to a few old timers who swear there’s at least 4 different Sabal palmetto variants. Could be explained by cross pollination from a different Sabal species. Thank you for explaining that!!

It's kind of funny that you mention that.  I have a batch of seedlings growing up and there appears to be two distinct types - a much taller stretched out form with longer petioles and the others are very short and compact.  Exact same care and requirements, tall ones beside short ones in random order.  Not sure if they will grow out of their differences, only time will tell.

7E335A38-C275-4835-91CF-CF6DA110444D.jpeg

4C2E9BC5-8826-445A-BC87-5CCACADBD090.jpeg

Edited by Chester B
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teddytn
57 minutes ago, Chester B said:

It's kind of funny that you mention that.  I have a batch of seedlings growing up and there appears to be two distinct types - a much taller stretched out form with longer petioles and the others are very short and compact.  Exact same care and requirements, tall ones beside short ones in random order.  Not sure if they will grow out of their differences, only time will tell.

7E335A38-C275-4835-91CF-CF6DA110444D.jpeg

4C2E9BC5-8826-445A-BC87-5CCACADBD090.jpeg

I would be willing to bet if someone grew out 1000 seeds to 15g size there would be a wide range of differences in the group. Cold tolerance would be trait to experiment with also. Not to that scale, but I plan on dedicating a raised bed this spring to scattering a few hundred Sabal mexicana seeds in, and just watch what happens over the years. The Texas freeze gave me a renewed interest in experimenting with some Sabal species people would normally say are a no-go for my area. Gary Hollar sells Sabal palmetto ‘fat boy’, that’s specifically how he and I got to talking about the variants, he claims they all stay true to seed. @Will Simpson posted some good pics of them in one of his threads. Im currently trying to collect as many Sabal minors from as many different states/ variations I can get my hands on. It’s fascinating to me just how many Sabal minor variants there are. 

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Chester B

@teddytn I did see the photos of the fat boy palmettos. I really like the look of those, I prefer the beefier ones. 
 

I have three different types of minors, two unknown and some McCurtains. I just got some in the mail and they are very green compared to my others which are more blue. 
 

Mexicana are great but I had issues with them. Some sort of insect around here killed the seedlings I had but left all the other Sabal species I was growing out. 

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teddytn
5 hours ago, Chester B said:

@teddytn I did see the photos of the fat boy palmettos. I really like the look of those, I prefer the beefier ones. 
 

I have three different types of minors, two unknown and some McCurtains. I just got some in the mail and they are very green compared to my others which are more blue. 
 

Mexicana are great but I had issues with them. Some sort of insect around here killed the seedlings I had but left all the other Sabal species I was growing out. 

That’s really weird they only hit the Mexicana…hmm. There’s definite variation between sabal minors from different locales. Florida minors seem to stay the smallest. I saw minors in NC that we’re jaw dropping big on the coast. Texas Sabal minors, well you know what they say, everything’s bigger in TX! 

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amh

I love the idea of hybrid sabals, both for adding vigor and cold hardiness. I'll be planting some of the 'Leu Garden' possible hybrid miamiensis this spring and will have to look out for other hybrids. 

 

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Chester B
2 hours ago, teddytn said:

That’s really weird they only hit the Mexicana…hmm. There’s definite variation between sabal minors from different locales. Florida minors seem to stay the smallest. I saw minors in NC that we’re jaw dropping big on the coast. Texas Sabal minors, well you know what they say, everything’s bigger in TX! 

I think at the time I had mexicana, minor, palmetto, palmetto “Lisa”, uresana and causiarum all in the greenhouse and only the mexicana got infested. Weird, I know. But I would love to get them again. 
 

1 hour ago, amh said:

I love the idea of hybrid sabals, both for adding vigor and cold hardiness. I'll be planting some of the 'Leu Garden' possible hybrid miamiensis this spring and will have to look out for other hybrids. 

 

I have Sabal “Oregon” which is a suspected hybrid. Only time will tell if it actually is. 

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Will
22 hours ago, Phoenikakias said:

There are far more Sabal hybridsin cultivation, that one might think of. Problem is that a human-controlled crossing just like in the Butiinae or Phoenix is most uncertain, because Sabal as a genus is monoecious (unlike Phoenix) and flowers are always bisexual (unlike the situation in the Butiinae). For example lets say that you gather pollen from a S causiarum and you dust it on mature flowers of minor. Despite your hand pollination effort, you can not be sure, whether formed fruits and seeds are the result of self or cross pollination, at least until resulted plants grow beyond the stage of seedlings or juveniles. So no one gets in to trouble to produce such hybrids. FYI I have been told a true story by a palm expert who tried to identify many Sabal specimens in a palm collection in a famous garden in Cap Ferrat France. Not a single specimen conformed fully to the spp description of Scott Zona and the available key.

Does every single flower have male and female parts? Or do Sabal push 2-3 flower stocks which are different in gender?

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Phoenikakias
1 hour ago, Will said:

Does every single flower have male and female parts? Or do Sabal push 2-3 flower stocks which are different in gender?

As said, they bear always bisexual flowers, that is equiped with both functional male and female organs. Whether there is however a strict sequence of organ maturity on each inflorescence ( ie first male than female organs) and there is a synchronization of all concerned flowers on the same stalk (not probable imho), as a way to prevent inbreeding, is unknown to me.

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Scott W

Oddly I was just talking to @edbrown_III on Sunday about this topic. 

We didn't get too technical but the topic came up when discussing a Sabal domengensis I was growing and collecting seed from the mature one he has in his yard, and whether or not that seed would be true. In that he stated while it's possible for a natural hybrid to occur, the odds of it are very small due to the flowering habit of the Sabal.  Again, didn't go much beyond that...

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N8ALLRIGHT
On 1/17/2022 at 5:34 AM, Phoenikakias said:

There are far more Sabal hybridsin cultivation, that one might think of. Problem is that a human-controlled crossing just like in the Butiinae or Phoenix is most uncertain, because Sabal as a genus is monoecious (unlike Phoenix) and flowers are always bisexual (unlike the situation in the Butiinae). For example lets say that you gather pollen from a S causiarum and you dust it on mature flowers of minor. Despite your hand pollination effort, you can not be sure, whether formed fruits and seeds are the result of self or cross pollination, at least until resulted plants grow beyond the stage of seedlings or juveniles. So no one gets in to trouble to produce such hybrids. FYI I have been told a true story by a palm expert who tried to identify many Sabal specimens in a palm collection in a famous garden in Cap Ferrat France. Not a single specimen conformed fully to the spp description of Scott Zona and the available key.

Interesting stuff,so are the butianae bisexual in a different way, example male and female spathes making it easier to produce mule palms or are they male and female flowers on the same spathe and they are laboriously removing male flowers because the end result is lucrative?

 

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N8ALLRIGHT

By the way I'd totally buy a "Mc Lisa"

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Phoenikakias
40 minutes ago, N8ALLRIGHT said:

Interesting stuff,so are the butianae bisexual in a different way, example male and female spathes making it easier to produce mule palms or are they male and female flowers on the same spathe and they are laboriously removing male flowers because the end result is lucrative?

 

Latter, it is called emasculation. 

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N8ALLRIGHT
21 hours ago, Phoenikakias said:

Latter, it is called emasculation

So if one was to follow the process of mule palm production only with sabals it would seem to be doable. Biggest hangup I see is a market. With the exception of palm nuts in marginal climates (me included) most people aren't going to be interested in slow growing barely trunking palms so the incentive isn't there. However that being said, I think it would be great if someone would give it try. Perhaps using sabals with fairly different traits. Say a blue uresana pollen with a emasculated minor? Seedlings could be observed for "blueness". I'm sure this is more difficult than this with other variables. It would be a labor of love as opposed to money:greenthumb:

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MarkbVet
On 1/17/2022 at 12:18 PM, Chester B said:

@teddytn I did see the photos of the fat boy palmettos. I really like the look of those, I prefer the beefier ones. 
 

I have three different types of minors, two unknown and some McCurtains. I just got some in the mail and they are very green compared to my others which are more blue. 
 

Mexicana are great but I had issues with them. Some sort of insect around here killed the seedlings I had but left all the other Sabal species I was growing out. 

If no insects were ever found on the plants, I'd suspect cutworms (moth larvae in Noctuidae family) or slugs.  Both hide in day, come out at night.  (Yeah, I was into entomology for 15 years before going into veterinary medicine)

Edited by MarkbVet
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MarkbVet
On 1/17/2022 at 12:12 PM, teddytn said:

I would be willing to bet if someone grew out 1000 seeds to 15g size there would be a wide range of differences in the group. Cold tolerance would be trait to experiment with also. Not to that scale, but I plan on dedicating a raised bed this spring to scattering a few hundred Sabal mexicana seeds in, and just watch what happens over the years. The Texas freeze gave me a renewed interest in experimenting with some Sabal species people would normally say are a no-go for my area. Gary Hollar sells Sabal palmetto ‘fat boy’, that’s specifically how he and I got to talking about the variants, he claims they all stay true to seed. @Will Simpson posted some good pics of them in one of his threads. Im currently trying to collect as many Sabal minors from as many different states/ variations I can get my hands on. It’s fascinating to me just how many Sabal minor variants there are. 

@Chester B pictures do suggest varying genetic combinations... hybrid gene introgression could easily explain that, unless a pure non hybridized plant is for some reason very genetically variable.

Edited by MarkbVet
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teddytn
3 hours ago, MarkbVet said:

@Chester B pictures do suggest varying genetic combinations... hybrid gene introgression could easily explain that, unless a pure non hybridized plant is for some reason very genetically variable.

For sure I agree. From my observations sabals seem fairly stable from seed generally speaking. Unlike agaves for example which can have big ones small ones, differing colors, markings, leaf shape all from the same batch of seeds. Someone mentioned it before, but there may be more hybrids floating around than most people realize. 

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teddytn
On 1/18/2022 at 11:20 PM, N8ALLRIGHT said:

By the way I'd totally buy a "Mc Lisa"

Me too, that’s a perfect name lol

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amh

I think I'll do an interspecific mass planting of sabals and see what happens; check back in about 10 years for seed.:floor:

But in all seriousness, I'll be doing this.  

 

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MarkbVet
On 1/15/2022 at 2:39 PM, 96720 said:

What would be the reason for a hybrid most hybrids I can think of are to have a palm more cold hardy

Some hybrids may also aim at unusual or different appearance, (with hardiness too of course)-- such as the 'Frankenbrahea" sea-green hybrid.  Or faster growth.

Edited by MarkbVet
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Chester B

It's been so long but I looked back and my Sabal palmettos came from @kinzyjr.  Apparently I've had these darn things for 2 years, much slower than any S minor I've grown.  Now that I've got them in some deep tree pots, indoors and under the grow light they are really starting to move.  These guys have been through very cold temps, the heat dome, periods of neglect, torrential rains, and arid conditions.  These are some tough little palms.

These are the parents, which are apparently no longer in this world:

https://www.google.com/maps/@27.9103433,-81.843039,3a,75y,162.66h,73.69t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s4HPaeoL1tWS_iRbr5Uculg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

Comments from @kinzyjr at that time

"Given the variable nature of these palms, I can't guarantee that every seedling will exhibit the thick-trunked boot-retaining form that the parents exhibit.  You may get some surprises at maturity."

What doesn't show in my photos is how very blue these seedlings are.

One great side note is that my Dad just bought a place in Ft Meyers, so I'll be able to go collecting seeds, seedlings, etc on a regular basis.

Edited by Chester B
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kinzyjr
18 minutes ago, Chester B said:

It's been so long but I looked back and my Sabal palmettos came from @kinzyjr.  Apparently I've had these darn things for 2 years, much slower than any S minor I've grown.  Now that I've got them in some deep tree pots, indoors and under the grow light they are really starting to move.  These guys have been through very cold temps, the heat dome, periods of neglect, torrential rains, and arid conditions.  These are some tough little palms.

These are the parents, which are apparently no longer in this world:

https://www.google.com/maps/@27.9103433,-81.843039,3a,75y,162.66h,73.69t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s4HPaeoL1tWS_iRbr5Uculg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

Comments from @kinzyjr at that time

"Given the variable nature of these palms, I can't guarantee that every seedling will exhibit the thick-trunked boot-retaining form that the parents exhibit.  You may get some surprises at maturity."

What doesn't show in my photos is how very blue these seedlings are.

One great side note is that my Dad just bought a place in Ft Meyers, so I'll be able to go collecting seeds, seedlings, etc on a regular basis.

It will be interesting to see how they turn out.  Hard to believe that it has been that long already.  It looks like a few of the parents survived the demo and reconstruction of the lot into a Starbucks/Aspen Dental:

https://www.google.com/maps/@27.9104281,-81.8433967,3a,15y,116.59h,87.81t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1sM7IdPtnPZrXRAJDhVhuGzQ!2e0!5s20210301T000000!7i16384!8i8192

202201202355_BartowSabalPalmetto.jpg

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Collectorpalms
On 1/19/2022 at 9:53 PM, N8ALLRIGHT said:

So if one was to follow the process of mule palm production only with sabals it would seem to be doable. Biggest hangup I see is a market. With the exception of palm nuts in marginal climates (me included) most people aren't going to be interested in slow growing barely trunking palms so the incentive isn't there. However that being said, I think it would be great if someone would give it try. Perhaps using sabals with fairly different traits. Say a blue uresana pollen with a emasculated minor? Seedlings could be observed for "blueness". I'm sure this is more difficult than this with other variables. It would be a labor of love as opposed to money:greenthumb:

Smiles.

Edited by Collectorpalms

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Collectorpalms

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sonoranfans
On 1/18/2022 at 4:28 AM, Scott W said:

Oddly I was just talking to @edbrown_III on Sunday about this topic. 

We didn't get too technical but the topic came up when discussing a Sabal domengensis I was growing and collecting seed from the mature one he has in his yard, and whether or not that seed would be true. In that he stated while it's possible for a natural hybrid to occur, the odds of it are very small due to the flowering habit of the Sabal.  Again, didn't go much beyond that...

Ed is certainly a knowldgeable guy, he was a wise sage on palms in 2007 when I joined PT.  Palemtto is the most cold hardy, crossing with another would tend to be a low probability of increased cold hardiness.  Before we start waving hands at "hybrid vigor", there are also hybid weakening crosses, less vigor.  Many crosses are duds genetically but uou need to grow them out to find out.  I have had a few crappy mold sensitive jubutiabrus and one that wasnt.  An F1 cross would have a wide range of offspring taking some genes from each parent.  Might be you wold need to grow out 100-300 seeds to maturity find a significantly more cold hardy one than the palmetto.  Then you would have to self that one to stabilize the population.  So what is the goal?  Cold hardiness is a long shot and may only improve a couple degrees at best.  Palmtalkers have been hybridizing palms for 50+ years, that is where a lot of the known crosses of butia, jubaea come from, really experienced hybridizers like merill wilcox and Dick Douglas.  So yes Im sure sabal hybrids have not only been considered but achieved if there is any real motivation to do so.  

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Collectorpalms

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