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Nomad NYC

Growing a Canary Island Date Palm in New York City

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Nomad NYC

Hello! This is my very first post in the PalmTalk!  I've lurked here on and off over the years, but only recently joined this forum.

This new thread will document my "insane" project of trying to grow a Canary Island Date Palm ( aka Phoenix Canariensis ) here in Southern Queens, New York City -  currently in  Zone 7B.  I've always  interested in growing exotic types of plants all my life.  But I first became aware of this particular palm after managing to germinate some seeds that I picked up from in front of a very big pot-bound Canary Island Date Palm that happened to be in front of  the United States Botanic Garden (USBG),  while I was visiting  Washington DC back in 1994.  For around the period of twenty years, I grew a CIDP in a  big pot,  and  despite it becoming  quite large , it didn't flower so  I never found out what sex it was.. Unfortunately in late spring of 2015, I took it outside, as usual for the season,  and it suddenly died during a brief freak heat wave.

     I then attempted to grow Canary Island Date Palms again the next year, from seeds purchased from RarePalmSeeds.com, but out of ten of those seeds, only two germinated, and of those, only one seedling survived.  Then in the following year, in 2017, during a visit to San Francisco,  I collected a bunch of seeds from a CIDP at the southeast corner of Union Square , which when I returned to New York, I promptly planted , with most of them easily germinating .  From those seedlings  now consist my current crop of Canary Island Date Palms  ( about four of those palms ) but I had so many previously, and didn't have the space , that I gave most of those palms away .

During the beginning of the Pandemic, I was stuck at home, watching more YouTube videos than I would normally,  and happened to come across  a few Palm enthusiast "Zone Pushing"  palms in places that were not their original optimal growing area. So I figured, why don't I try to do that too!  I decided to  try and plant several varieties of cold hardy-ish  palms  that  was growing at the time, outside in ground  - two CIDP, and four Sabal Palmettos at my house here in Queens, and two CIDP , two Sabal Palmettos and two Sabal Minors at my sister's place in Brooklyn.  Of all the Canary Island Date Palms that I planted in ground in 2020, only the one Palm that was germinated from that seed from RarePalmSeeds.com was cold hardy enough to be able to survive so far (  All of the San Francisco seed germinated palms planted in ground did not survive the winter of 2020-2021).

Following are some of the initial pictures that I took to document this Canary Island Date Palm project -    

 

Original planting location  -  June 2020:

0BDQZd.jpg

 

Fall  2021 -  first full year in ground at new, final location:

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Here is my  Winter 2021 - 2022  protection for the Canary Island Date Palm:

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March 2022 ( Spring , after removing winter protection )

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Yes, I admit, it doesn't look so hot right now , but it should improve when the weather warms up ..

That's it for now - I will try to update this thread monthly - and thanks for taking the time to read about this crazy endeavor of mine!

Edited by Nomad NYC
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Allen

Welcome to the forum!  Looks good!  Did the Sabal minors not make it?  Why not try a Trachy also since it is the easiest trunked palm to do?  A little heat in that box maybe?

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Nomad NYC

Thanks for the welcome! As for the Sabal Minors, they are doing really great over at their Brooklyn location, will post about them in another thread soon!

As for Trachy's , I actually have several varieties that I've grown from seed that I haven't planted out in ground yet, but plan to in the future

In regards to my Canary Island Date Palm winter protection box, yes, I could have put heating cables , etc. but I wanted to experiment to see if it could manage to survive the winter in my zone without supplemental warmth, and so far, it has . But my San Francisco seed sourced CIDP most definitively  would have survived the previous winter if they had extra warmth  haha

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Will Simpson

I'm pretty sure you will need supplemental heat on cold winter mornings there , but so far so good . You'll learn a lot on this forum about all the ways you can protect stuff and plant . 

Looks like a nice microclimate there .

Will

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MonkeDonkezz

Cool post! I am also from NYC and I am gonna try to zone push a Trachy in either a large pot or planter box, and I will be protecting it.

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oasis371

3E9E10D3-78DF-425B-B138-E1416DA6AC54.thumb.jpeg.9bf05dc78e70162fb532e50cb16e91f5.jpeg

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oasis371

 

Trachycarpus fortunei that was protrected with fabric and lights, for January-February.

E76AA306-0367-4DA6-A175-FA736D9E08D5.jpeg

Edited by oasis371
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Nomad NYC

June update on my crazy ongoing experiment in "Zone Pushing" in the Big Apple...

Ever since the late spring weather has become warmer and warmer here, my little Canary Island Date Palm is beginning to regrow some of the foliage it mostly lost during the wintertime:

1c9J72.jpg

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( Just got a big bag of that PalmGain stuff -  Applied some to it last weekend - will see what happens when I finally start giving my palms some fertilizer for a change! )

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Htown Palms

Good luck! No matter what someone is growing its always fun to see the results from zone pushing. Here in Texas it's easy to grow CIDP's so I try to zone push Foxtail Palms, Flamethrower Palms, and Archy's. In Florida where those Palms are easily grown people try to grow Lipstick palms. I think plant people always love a good challenge! 

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bronxboynyc71

I planted this trachy about 9 years ago. They were 4 ft when i purchased them from a grower in NC. There at least 12 feet now. Gave it protection the first 3 years. It seems like they like the cold now. It seems to grow all year round!!! I live in the Bronx. Not sure if theres many like it in the NYC area? Im pretty sure theres some at the botanical gargens, but of course there in green houses! You cant go wrong with windmill palms. Good luck

34439.jpeg

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JLM
3 hours ago, bronxboynyc71 said:

I planted this trachy about 9 years ago. They were 4 ft when i purchased them from a grower in NC. There at least 12 feet now. Gave it protection the first 3 years. It seems like they like the cold now. It seems to grow all year round!!! I live in the Bronx. Not sure if theres many like it in the NYC area? Im pretty sure theres some at the botanical gargens, but of course there in green houses! You cant go wrong with windmill palms. Good luck

34439.jpeg

Wow! Looks better than any windmill ive seen down here! Seriously, thats a beautiful palm.

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oasis371

Note that the one above is also in FLOWER!

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