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Polar Vortex 2022...... who's ready?


Sabal King

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3 minutes ago, NBTX11 said:

I don't think that's it.  The map I am referring to had all of the data USDA used to make their maps down to the street level.  I would show you exactly down to the 1/10th of a degree what your 30 year average was.  For example, maybe your 30 year average was 19.2 degrees.  

I can't find that map right now.  

Yes that map stopped working a while back, I don't know why, wish they would bring it back

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Corpus Christi, TX, near salt water, zone 9b/10a! Except when it isn't and everything gets nuked.

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Y'all....

Send help for the south. 

We ain't use to this! 

 

I see some pretty evident damage going on, and a year of hopeful recovery next year... Hopefully.... 🥺

 

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21 minutes ago, Dartolution said:

Y'all....

Send help for the south. 

We ain't use to this! 

 

I see some pretty evident damage going on, and a year of hopeful recovery next year... Hopefully.... 🥺

 

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That’s from this morning, correct? You should be sitting in the mid 20’s by now. 🤞

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We didn’t get above freezing either, I already see damage on my robusta and filifera fronds, maybe it’s filibusta. A little discoloration on my CIDP fronds. 
we are going on two days strait of below freezing temps, i can’t recall the last time I ever seen that. I think we hit 31 today.  It’s aiming for 14 degrees tonight. Some sad palms we will have. 

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19 minutes ago, Jtee said:

We didn’t get above freezing either, I already see damage on my robusta and filifera fronds, maybe it’s filibusta. A little discoloration on my CIDP fronds. 
we are going on two days strait of below freezing temps, i can’t recall the last time I ever seen that. I think we hit 31 today.  It’s aiming for 14 degrees tonight. Some sad palms we will have. 

2018/19 winter you didn’t see two days below freezing? That year was the palm killer for us. It was the longest coldest stretch in SC history I believe. It was bad here but brutal up in NC. 

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34 minutes ago, RJ said:

2018/19 winter you didn’t see two days below freezing? That year was the palm killer for us. It was the longest coldest stretch in SC history I believe. It was bad here but brutal up in NC. 

As a North Carolinian, I can confirm that the 2018/2019 winter was indeed one for the history books. Wasn't quite as bad here in the mountains compared to the lower elevations since we are used to the cold (cold by the southeastern U.S. standards), but one to remember nonetheless.

12-24-2022

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Emerald Isle, North Carolina

USDA Zone 8B/9A - Humid Subtropical (CFA)

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Are there any palm growers in Western North Carolina? Let us know how you all are holding up.

12-24-2022

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Emerald Isle, North Carolina

USDA Zone 8B/9A - Humid Subtropical (CFA)

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Day after day here 9F tonight.  -1F then 4F last 2 nights.  I think some of my bamboo is dead even.  S. minor and needles seem ok.  Hybrids covered with some fronds sticking out still.  Those look moderately beat up.  Protection holding on everything tender.

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YouTube https://www.youtube.com/@tntropics - 60+ In-ground 7A palms - (Sabal) minor(7 large + 27 seedling size, 3 dwarf),  brazoria(1) , birmingham(4), etonia (1) louisiana(5), palmetto (1), riverside (1),  (Trachycarpus) fortunei(7), wagnerianus(1),  Rhapidophyllum hystrix(7),  18' Mule-Butia x Syagrus(1),  Blue Butia odorata (1) +Tons of tropical plants.  Recent Yearly Lows -6F, -1F, 12F, 11F, 18F, 16F, 3F, 3F, 6F, 3F, 1F, 16F, 17F, 6F, 8F

 

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On 12/23/2022 at 12:35 PM, tlow said:

That's interesting as up here in DFW it performed exactly as predicted.. the forecasted low was 9-11 depending on where you were, and for me in NTX I had an ultimate low this morning of 10.9F and climbing now finally..  One more cold night, but tomorrow is much better, and it continues to get better.. this wasn't as bad as I was fearing actually..

10.9 is actually exactly what I hit over here a few miles away on lake grapevine in flower mound. Haven’t unwrapped the Queen (tomorrow) but most of the others seem to have make it through the worst save a very 12in filifera that only had frost cloth over top. Everything else borderline had heat from minixmas or 60w incandescent work lamps. Unprotected sabal minor, needle and European fan seem undisturbed. 
 

TBD on some musa stems I tried to preserve via lights and wrapping. Agave Americana Wiley and I assume toast, same with the multiplex bamboo   (both unprotected). 

Had a difficult time keeping the confederate jasmine on espalier covered with the wind but space heaters at the base seemed to have help, as did growing directly on outside of heated interior walls. Took some damage but fingers crossed we’ll make it. It’s a lot of time and effort growing other in pattern on a wall.

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On 12/24/2022 at 2:18 AM, NBTX11 said:

It looks great.  It came through the Feb 2021 freeze fairly easily.  I'm not even expecting it to burn from this year's freeze.  I was slightly worried about my smaller Filifera, so I covered them with buckets. 

What people don't understand about South Texas is, we have had zero freezes up until yesterday, and next week it will back up to 75-77 degrees, around 25C, which is probably mid July weather in London.  And that's not abnormal, it's that warm or warmer every December and January for stretches.  

Yes for most days of the year the weather in South Texas is much better than in London, however the bad freezes in southern Texas every 10-20 years are worse than the bad freezes here, except maybe South padre Island they saw similar lows. 25c/77f sounds about right for the long term July high here but in recent years it's been higher than that, this summer it was around 82f for July and August. We unfortunately aren't in the 70s in December like southern Texas, but it takes a very cold air mass for central London to go below freezing, so there was no frost before the freeze since Jan 6th last winter. Some warm microclimates in central London before this freeze haven't had a frost since 2018. This is also the reason a London 9b or 10a is very different to a Texas 10a since we may not be in the 70s in the winter but we are in the 50s during the day and 40s at night so whilst things such as howea forsteriana, archontophoenix, Rhopalostylis and chamedorea do well we obviously don't have enough heat for foxtails ect to survive the winter.  About the warmest in winter it gets here is the 60s a few days. By March though we usually have a few days in the 70s. It's not really surprising it's cooler here since we are 1725 miles futher north but it helps having the Mediterranean futher south and the Sahara desert, so we can get plenty of warm dry days when the winds are coming from the south.

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1 hour ago, Foxpalms said:

Yes for most days of the year the weather in South Texas is much better than in London, however the bad freezes in southern Texas every 10-20 years are worse than the bad freezes here, except maybe South padre Island they saw similar lows. 25c/77f sounds about right for the long term July high here but in recent years it's been higher than that, this summer it was around 82f for July and August. We unfortunately aren't in the 70s in December like southern Texas, but it takes a very cold air mass for central London to go below freezing, so there was no frost before the freeze since Jan 6th last winter. Some warm microclimates in central London before this freeze haven't had a frost since 2018. This is also the reason a London 9b or 10a is very different to a Texas 10a since we may not be in the 70s in the winter but we are in the 50s during the day and 40s at night so whilst things such as howea forsteriana, archontophoenix, Rhopalostylis and chamedorea do well we obviously don't have enough heat for foxtails ect to survive the winter.  About the warmest in winter it gets here is the 60s a few days. By March though we usually have a few days in the 70s. It's not really surprising it's cooler here since we are 1725 miles futher north but it helps having the Mediterranean futher south and the Sahara desert, so we can get plenty of warm dry days when the winds are coming from the south.

The only thing stopping us from being a much higher zone is one or two zone busting cold fronts per year. That and there is nothing between here and the Arctic Ocean in northern Canada but relatively flat land. No bodies of water and no mountain ranges. A polar express can come right down the continent and the only thing slowing it down is our latitude which somewhat helps it run out of steam before it gets here at 29 degrees North. 

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1 hour ago, RJ said:

Merry Christmas 🎄 all. 19.4 and steady this morning. To a warmer rest of the winter 😎

Merry Christmas 8F this morning and that feels like we're having a heatwave.  Almost over.  Updated my sig "Recent yearly lows" to add the record -1F .  4  straight years of lows that were higher than our HIGH temp on Friday

Edited by Allen
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YouTube https://www.youtube.com/@tntropics - 60+ In-ground 7A palms - (Sabal) minor(7 large + 27 seedling size, 3 dwarf),  brazoria(1) , birmingham(4), etonia (1) louisiana(5), palmetto (1), riverside (1),  (Trachycarpus) fortunei(7), wagnerianus(1),  Rhapidophyllum hystrix(7),  18' Mule-Butia x Syagrus(1),  Blue Butia odorata (1) +Tons of tropical plants.  Recent Yearly Lows -6F, -1F, 12F, 11F, 18F, 16F, 3F, 3F, 6F, 3F, 1F, 16F, 17F, 6F, 8F

 

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13 hours ago, NBTX11 said:

Wasn't a criticism buddy.  I know what zone every area around here is.  My greater point was that those areas in San Antonio that are 8b, such as north of Loop 410 are high 8b's that generally range from 18 or 19-20 degrees on average.   They used to have a map where you could zoom down to street level and it would tell you exactly what you're 30 year average was, down to the degree, for example 19.6 degrees, etc.  It was a really neat tool.  I can't find that map now, but it existed. 

No worries...I enjoy having my local growing conditions explained to me about as much as the next Palmtalker.

I have not seen that map you are referring to in a few years.  It was a nice tool, and wish someone would bring it back.  When I used it, I was able to measure the actual distance my property was away from the Hardiness Zone 9a border (a couple of miles).  I think it is all semantics though when you are talking a few miles on either side of a Hardiness Zone border.  I mean, what are the chances it was really that accurate down to the punctilious degree?  The Hardiness Zones are really only baseline assessments, as each location has its own micro-conditions.  A good general guide to start from though.

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Unified Theory of Palm Seed Germination

image.png.2a6e16e02a0a8bfb8a478ab737de4bb1.png

(Where: bh = bottom heat, fs = fresh seed, L = love, m = magic, p = patience, and t = time)

DISCLAIMER: Working theory; not yet peer reviewed.

"Fronds come and go; the spear is life!" - Anonymous Palmtalker

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Uncovered a few things to look.  Initial impression 2 covered but unheated Birminghams burned badly even spears, 1 covered/unheated Birmingham looks ok , S minor look fine, needles fine, covered but unheated brazoria and Louisiana look ok.  Some smaller uncovered minors seem burned bad. 

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/@tntropics - 60+ In-ground 7A palms - (Sabal) minor(7 large + 27 seedling size, 3 dwarf),  brazoria(1) , birmingham(4), etonia (1) louisiana(5), palmetto (1), riverside (1),  (Trachycarpus) fortunei(7), wagnerianus(1),  Rhapidophyllum hystrix(7),  18' Mule-Butia x Syagrus(1),  Blue Butia odorata (1) +Tons of tropical plants.  Recent Yearly Lows -6F, -1F, 12F, 11F, 18F, 16F, 3F, 3F, 6F, 3F, 1F, 16F, 17F, 6F, 8F

 

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last 3 nights -1F, 2F or 4F I forgot, 8F

Covered/unheated Brazoria fronds

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Same Brazoria palm uncovered frond

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Covered/unheated Birmingham - badly burnt

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covered/unheated in sun (tips burnt)

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Uncovered Needle palm asks did it get cold?

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Uncovered Sabal minor says a little but I'm good - Merry Christmas!

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Edited by Allen
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YouTube https://www.youtube.com/@tntropics - 60+ In-ground 7A palms - (Sabal) minor(7 large + 27 seedling size, 3 dwarf),  brazoria(1) , birmingham(4), etonia (1) louisiana(5), palmetto (1), riverside (1),  (Trachycarpus) fortunei(7), wagnerianus(1),  Rhapidophyllum hystrix(7),  18' Mule-Butia x Syagrus(1),  Blue Butia odorata (1) +Tons of tropical plants.  Recent Yearly Lows -6F, -1F, 12F, 11F, 18F, 16F, 3F, 3F, 6F, 3F, 1F, 16F, 17F, 6F, 8F

 

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We had a low of about 12-13, from the palm/plant damage I've seen so far, palmettos and butias look like nothing not even happened, sagos look fine, oleander looks fine.

The CIDP near me(I posted a pic of it in one of my threads) looks discolored around the frond's edges but is still kind of green, I don't even want to look at the washingtonias around town yet😨.

This was a very dry cold though, I saw no frost last night or this morning, does that help a lot?

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4 hours ago, Foxpalms said:

Yes for most days of the year the weather in South Texas is much better than in London, however the bad freezes in southern Texas every 10-20 years are worse than the bad freezes here, except maybe South padre Island they saw similar lows. 25c/77f sounds about right for the long term July high here but in recent years it's been higher than that, this summer it was around 82f for July and August. We unfortunately aren't in the 70s in December like southern Texas, but it takes a very cold air mass for central London to go below freezing, so there was no frost before the freeze since Jan 6th last winter. Some warm microclimates in central London before this freeze haven't had a frost since 2018. This is also the reason a London 9b or 10a is very different to a Texas 10a since we may not be in the 70s in the winter but we are in the 50s during the day and 40s at night so whilst things such as howea forsteriana, archontophoenix, Rhopalostylis and chamedorea do well we obviously don't have enough heat for foxtails ect to survive the winter.  About the warmest in winter it gets here is the 60s a few days. By March though we usually have a few days in the 70s. It's not really surprising it's cooler here since we are 1725 miles futher north but it helps having the Mediterranean futher south and the Sahara desert, so we can get plenty of warm dry days when the winds are coming from the south.

The cold fronts can be colder in Texas than in the UK that's for sure but as NBTX mentioned our winters are usually mild to warm with occasional freezes in between.  The lower latitude helps for the recovering process and Texas is known for very long hot summers , warm spring and fall. The fronds grow back in no time. 

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1 hour ago, DAVEinMB said:

Friday night 13F, last night 14F. No bueno. 

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14 Last night? Odd we were warmer then you last night. I woke up but didn’t even think to look at temps along the coast as usually you’re warmer. 

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22 minutes ago, RJ said:

14 Last night? Odd we were warmer then you last night. I woke up but didn’t even think to look at temps along the coast as usually you’re warmer. 

Yea I'm super surprised it got that cold again. We were forecasted to see something like 22 last night. 

The second night in the low teens caused my c. cataractum to buckle but the spears seem solid. Pretty impressed with them as well as my seed-grown grapefruit trees and rhapis excelsa. gonna be interesting to see how things look once we warm up. 

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The aftermath thus far:

Sabal blackburniana - pretty rough shape. Looks like significant burn:

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Chamaerops humilis - I see some tissue damage, and bronzing, but nothing severe yet. (obviously too soon tell) The trucks were wrapped in pipe heat cable and frost cloth shoved in there rather haphazardly. 

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Butia - Tip burn is evident, possible leaflet tissue damage. Center spear, and base were also wrapped in heat cable, and appear firm and normally colored:

 

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Strangely - The "BxJxS" [which I am putting in quotations after this because I'm not confident it is not just a JxB or BxJ] does not have any discernible discoloration, or apparent burn yet. 

This is a potted palm on the edge of the patio uncovered, and exposed. 

 

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I'm in the NE ATL suburbs. We bottomed out at 7°F yesterday (12/24) morning. My only concern is potted plants. Lots of small Trachycarpus. So much for the predictions of a mild winter. I have no faith in meteorologists or climate scientists.

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I got a question. I have my Robustas in Insulated Boxes with C9 Bulbs in them. They seem to have had a nice temp of 40-45F inside them while we had lows here of -6F. Once we get above freezing, should I Open them up and give them some Air and Sun (It's supposed to also rain for a few days next week with highs in the 60s). Or should I rather keep them closed up until Spring?

 

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I haven't used no heating sources just bed sheets and a bucket for the Queen . So far no spear pull . Every other palm was wrapped in sheets only . Robusta canopy is gone all brown .The Filifera is the only one that still looks good with minor damage to the petioles but they opened their leaflets in the sun which is a good sign.  I'm not enjoying the view in the front yard but oh well. Let's see who survives.  If the Queen makes it I'll be surprised.  Keep you up to date 

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4 hours ago, bgifford said:

I got a question. I have my Robustas in Insulated Boxes with C9 Bulbs in them. They seem to have had a nice temp of 40-45F inside them while we had lows here of -6F. Once we get above freezing, should I Open them up and give them some Air and Sun (It's supposed to also rain for a few days next week with highs in the 60s). Or should I rather keep them closed up until Spring?

 

I would let them get some sun.

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Here in NOVA, the first night of the arctic invasion was, at least according to my thermometer, 8f Friday night and 20f Saturday…last  night, 10f and 32-34f today…both days, lots of sun…all my palms have experienced worse in 8 years but my oldest, no protection Trachy reacted differently this time around…it’s frond segments all folded up very tightly all the way up and down the segment…it’s done that before but not nearly as extreme…anyway, I thought it was fried but today, as the southern sun exposure began to thaw things out, the segments began to open up and flatten out but they are still more folded than flat…we have several more sub freezing nights coming up but days well above freezing. I’ll unwrap the more sensitive Chamaerops but deliberately left some of it unwrapped to see how those parts did…so far, they look good. The Brazoria really looks good…all those massive unprotected fronds totally exposed and I don’t see any damage, in fact, it’s blue color seems enhanced…I think 8 years of establishment for this palm means a lot…not really an extraordinary test this winter so far  but pretty extended cold nonetheless…hope I’m not speaking too soon, but if any unprotected palms die from this, I’ll be surprised.

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15 minutes ago, GregVirginia7 said:

Here in NOVA, the first night of the arctic invasion was, at least according to my thermometer, 8f Friday night and 20f Saturday…last  night, 10f and 32-34f today…both days, lots of sun…all my palms have experienced worse in 8 years but my oldest, no protection Trachy reacted differently this time around…it’s frond segments all folded up very tightly all the way up and down the segment…it’s done that before but not nearly as extreme…anyway, I thought it was fried but today, as the southern sun exposure began to thaw things out, the segments began to open up and flatten out but they are still more folded than flat…we have several more sub freezing nights coming up but days well above freezing. I’ll unwrap the more sensitive Chamaerops but deliberately left some of it unwrapped to see how those parts did…so far, they look good. The Brazoria really looks good…all those massive unprotected fronds totally exposed and I don’t see any damage, in fact, it’s blue color seems enhanced…I think 8 years of establishment for this palm means a lot…not really an extraordinary test this winter so far  but pretty extended cold nonetheless…hope I’m not speaking too soon, but if any unprotected palms die from this, I’ll be surprised.

It’ll be interesting if the lack of frost has any bearing. We’ve had our coldest tempts in 4 years but zero frost. 

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9 minutes ago, RJ said:

It’ll be interesting if the lack of frost has any bearing. We’ve had our coldest tempts in 4 years but zero frost. 

So far from what I'm observing in my yard it's definitely made a difference. But time will really tell. 

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11 hours ago, RJ said:

It’ll be interesting if the lack of frost has any bearing. We’ve had our coldest tempts in 4 years but zero frost. 

Meaning, a lack of frost indicates a dryer cold is better? Didn’t notice ant frost on my palms either…

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36 minutes ago, DAVEinMB said:

I recorded 14F again last night, what the hell. 

Yes last night was supposed to be 13F here and I woke up to 10F

YouTube https://www.youtube.com/@tntropics - 60+ In-ground 7A palms - (Sabal) minor(7 large + 27 seedling size, 3 dwarf),  brazoria(1) , birmingham(4), etonia (1) louisiana(5), palmetto (1), riverside (1),  (Trachycarpus) fortunei(7), wagnerianus(1),  Rhapidophyllum hystrix(7),  18' Mule-Butia x Syagrus(1),  Blue Butia odorata (1) +Tons of tropical plants.  Recent Yearly Lows -6F, -1F, 12F, 11F, 18F, 16F, 3F, 3F, 6F, 3F, 1F, 16F, 17F, 6F, 8F

 

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@Dartolution you're my hero that you left your Butia hybrid uncovered... I wrapped mine with C9 around the trunk, kept it a little warmer I'm sure, and frost cloth and she came out smelling like roses.... I just put this one in the ground around the May time frame. 

 

Also I have a few S. Blackburnianas that had the same "protection" and I use that in air quotes because truly I may have done more harm than good and this is the last year I do this method, but they came out just slightly lighter green but look great overall.  My biggest is a 5G..

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Other various damage reports (all covered the same way... some just had a black contractor bag thrown over them which again probably does more harm than good as I saw frost under a few of them.  I will NOT be doing this next year

Sabal Bermudana (the three I have got smoked, but will come back)  They look MUCH crispier now, with a lot of white

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Sabal Louisiana (planted just a few months ago, zero protection, zero damage... amazing)

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Sabal Mexicana

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Sabal Riverside (Probably did the best out of the entire bunch, as a variety)  IMG_20221224_122432.thumb.JPG.fab2058a052fd3102a97657603d4aacb.JPG

Sabal Palmetto Lisa (These also did amazing.. very little damage to all three of them)

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Sabal Urensas (highland variety)  These got banged up but didn't get bleached like the Bermudanas

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Sabal Bermudana (banged up good, just like this last winter with a few days of ice, and 16-17F)

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Sabal Rosei (Surprisingly, this one looks also like one of the top couple)  Stiff fronds, no discoloration!

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Sabal Birmingham (totally uncovered now this is it's second winter uncovered)  Looks just fine

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Serenoa Repens (just had a frost cloth lightly covering it... shocked this one looks this good and no spear pull)

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Sabal Minor TX (didn't even realize it was cold)

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Trachycarpus Fortunei (Went through Feb 2021 unprotected, same this time around.. starting to flatten out again, no spear pull just like '21)  Great genetics on this one

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Sabal Mexicana (Bought as 15G in '20, planted in October, rode out '21 unprotected... some whitening, and beaten up on older fronds but in two days of being uncovered it's spreading the new spear it had even more.. will be fine)

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Sabal Riverside (Planted as 15G in February of last year.  This one is my stand out... wrapped in just a garbage bag, and literally days later, ZERO spotting, discoloration and the damage you see with the fronds is my eight yr old bear hugging it and getting it into a contactor bag.  No need to protect this one ever and it's about to seed this year)

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Butia (Lowe's rescue.. last year rode winter uncovered, spear pulled, doubled in size.  Spear pulled again, daconil down the hole, and likely do the same thing as last year.  This one is a survivor I think)

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Sabal Minor var Louisiana (One of my favorites... barely covered with nothing but a small kids blanket, and looks like nothing ever.  Bought as a 1G, and now it's third year in the ground, it is HUGE) !!  This one is a winner

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Sabal Brazoriensis (No leaf damage, nothing)

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Sabal Minor var Beaufort, NC (zero damage)

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Lots more to document, but so far, nothing is dead, just little beaten up and we'll regrow throughout the year.

 

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@tlow Leaving the hybrid out was a "if it survives, it survives" decision. At this point I have to prioritize what is most important vs what I am willing to part with. 

Truth is, I have ran out of room in this tiny townhouse of mine with everything that has grown - time to start looking to move! 

Does your BxJ have hooks at the tips of the newly emerging fronds? 

 

 

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57 minutes ago, Allen said:

Yes last night was supposed to be 13F here and I woke up to 10F

This is 2 nights in a row that I was much lower than the forecasted low. Granted the airport is a good bit closer to the ocean so it stays warmer than me but I can't believe I'm seeing damn near a 10 degree difference. First time since I've been tracking my temp that it's been that much different. 

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On 12/23/2022 at 3:06 PM, boaterboat said:

Came home from a delayed flight out of Colorado last night and protected what I could. My Livistona Chinensis are showing foliar damage.  The pindos, mule, med fans, and dwarf palmettos all look fine so far. 
 We shall see. 

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Updated photos 12/26/2022. Livistona Chinensis not looking so great. A couple that were struggling look the worst, even though I was able to get some protection on them. 
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This looks the worst so far. Already very little dark green remaining. 7CD58E97-9A26-403A-B7AD-DB889D194A87.thumb.jpeg.fece48f4cf01580a236d058458541f81.jpeg
I have dark green remaining near the base of some of the fronds. 74327019-79E6-4555-9CA3-7EE4A8BE1FC9.thumb.jpeg.f107d9e0f7a00ad035d4f20f0fbe80ae.jpeg
 

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Driving around town today and surprisingly none of the washies or dates that I've passed are showing any visible burn. They all look the same as they did prior to this cold front

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