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Archontophoenix cunninghamiana


Chavy87
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I live near Sacramento, I purchased 2 of these palms from Lowes. Both are quad trunks. Is too late to put them in the ground before winter, we have about 3 months before it starts getting cold (40-50 degrees). We do get into the low 30s and once able moon into to high 20s. Should I wait for spring? Also they will going in area that will get morning sun and afternoon shade until the palm gets +15ft tall.

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Get them in the ground now. Soils are very warm and roots will spread quickly provided they are watered like crazy. In your hot dry climate, you’re smart to put them in afternoon shade. Fronds burn easily in full sun with low humidity. Keep ‘em wet! King Palms are semi-aquatic so it’s impossible to over water but very easy to underwater. They don’t like frost either. Overhead tree canopy will help greatly. 

Edited by Jim in Los Altos
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Jim in Los Altos, CA  SF Bay Area 37.34N- 122.13W- 190' above sea level

zone 10a/9b

sunset zone 16

300+ palms, 90+ species in the ground

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I agree with planting them now.  Mulch mulch and more mulch around the palms.  Water them a lot.  They will drink as much as you give them.

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Yah, what Jim and Craig said !

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San Francisco, California

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I had planned on putting in the lawn with grass around it, the sprinklers would hit the tree when on.

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Also I would recommend removing one of the quads to be a triple. They look much better in 3 or less

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Looks like someone already cut off the browned tips (shortened squared ends on the fronds in the picture on the cart). I agree, get them in the ground right now if you can, but maybe try to give them some partial shade if possible. Mine did not grow much for about a year after transplant, then took off in 2nd and 3rd year of being in the ground. I know they had much more shade at the nursery they came from. In retrospect, full sun and full wind on a newly re-graded yard was not optimal when we planted. Mine had a lot of sunburn and mechanical wind damage post transplant but eventually rebounded. If you can provide them some initial protection against those issues, it should help.

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14 hours ago, BigWaveDav3 said:

Looks like someone already cut off the browned tips (shortened squared ends on the fronds in the picture on the cart). I agree, get them in the ground right now if you can, but maybe try to give them some partial shade if possible. Mine did not grow much for about a year after transplant, then took off in 2nd and 3rd year of being in the ground. I know they had much more shade at the nursery they came from. In retrospect, full sun and full wind on a newly re-graded yard was not optimal when we planted. Mine had a lot of sunburn and mechanical wind damage post transplant but eventually rebounded. If you can provide them some initial protection against those issues, it should help.

Dave, Were yours planted or transplanted? Transplanted King palms will sulk for some time. Planted ones out of pots usually start growing rapidly shortly after planting if their water needs are met. 

Edited by Jim in Los Altos
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Jim in Los Altos, CA  SF Bay Area 37.34N- 122.13W- 190' above sea level

zone 10a/9b

sunset zone 16

300+ palms, 90+ species in the ground

Las Palmas Design

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Las Palmas Design & Associates

Elegant Homes and Gardens

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On 8/3/2022 at 1:07 PM, Jim in Los Altos said:

Dave, Were yours planted or transplanted? Transplanted King palms will sulk for some time. Planted ones out of pots usually start growing rapidly shortly after planting if their water needs are met. 

Mine were planted from 15 gallon containers, but did suffer a bit of jostling and soil loss laying down horizontally  in the back of my pickup for about 5 miles. They were also rooted through the containers into the ground when I purchased them from the nursery.

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On 8/2/2022 at 4:59 PM, enigma99 said:

Also I would recommend removing one of the quads to be a triple. They look much better in 3 or less

Wouldn't that be pretty traumatic for them, with their roots intertwined for years?  

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4 hours ago, Blueman said:

Wouldn't that be pretty traumatic for them, with their roots intertwined for years?  

Not if you simply saw it down at ground level. 

Jim in Los Altos, CA  SF Bay Area 37.34N- 122.13W- 190' above sea level

zone 10a/9b

sunset zone 16

300+ palms, 90+ species in the ground

Las Palmas Design

Facebook Page

Las Palmas Design & Associates

Elegant Homes and Gardens

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On 8/6/2022 at 3:03 AM, Jim in Los Altos said:

Not if you simply saw it down at ground level. 

I'd think it would be preferable to keep the clump at 4 trunks then.  Not like the 4th one would be a problem.  I've got Ptychosperma macaurthurii planted all over the yard, with anywhere from 1 to 6 main trunks, and all of them look fine.  

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7 hours ago, Blueman said:

I'd think it would be preferable to keep the clump at 4 trunks then.  Not like the 4th one would be a problem.  I've got Ptychosperma macaurthurii planted all over the yard, with anywhere from 1 to 6 main trunks, and all of them look fine.  

Jim’s and enigma99’s advice above is good advice. Archontophoenix are thirsty, heavy feeding solitary plams. When planted tight together they will fight for nutrients, water, and root space over the upcoming years ahead. Usually the strongest will overcome the others. I have seen successful clumps grown to maturity, but if one or two trunks start to look diminished and malnourished don’t feel bad removing them, the stronger trunks will thank you. If you keep the clump as is, I hope they all grow uniformly for you.

Ptychosperma macaurthurii is a clumping species, where multiple trunks are nature’s intent. Solitaire palms usually don’t want to compete too much with each other, and shouldn’t be compared to the clumping types in this situation. 

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4 hours ago, Fishinsteeg234 said:

Jim’s and enigma99’s advice above is good advice. Archontophoenix are thirsty, heavy feeding solitary plams. When planted tight together they will fight for nutrients, water, and root space over the upcoming years ahead. Usually the strongest will overcome the others. I have seen successful clumps grown to maturity, but if one or two trunks start to look diminished and malnourished don’t feel bad removing them, the stronger trunks will thank you. If you keep the clump as is, I hope they all grow uniformly for you.

Ptychosperma macaurthurii is a clumping species, where multiple trunks are nature’s intent. Solitaire palms usually don’t want to compete too much with each other, and shouldn’t be compared to the clumping types in this situation. 

Sorry but I have to respectively disagree with you on cluster planting. My groves of closely planted King palms are much happier than my singles. Most of my landscape is dense and there’s no sign at all of over-competition for water or nutrients. The idea of reducing the author of this thread topic’s foursome of Kings to a threesome was purely for aesthetic reasons since odd numbers are preferable to even numbers when multi planting. 
 

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Jim in Los Altos, CA  SF Bay Area 37.34N- 122.13W- 190' above sea level

zone 10a/9b

sunset zone 16

300+ palms, 90+ species in the ground

Las Palmas Design

Facebook Page

Las Palmas Design & Associates

Elegant Homes and Gardens

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