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Houston Polar Vortex 2022


Keys6505

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5 hours ago, Meangreen94z said:

Yes, they are incredibly hardy given their origin. As UK Palms mentioned there were specimen that came back from a more brief -11°F( -23.8°C) in New Mexico. 

 

But so is Sabal causiarum. Sometimes the origin is not telling the whole truth. That's why this forum is so cool. The experience and witness of people can surprise.

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Yes it's me Hortulanus 😂

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On 12/28/2022 at 12:35 AM, Meangreen94z said:

Everyone else can complain but I miss NTCHP.

I agree, Joseph is a good guy but not a technology wizard (not unlike myself!)  I think issues with his website contributed to a lack of communication with potential buyers when he went out of business.  He definitely was a great source for palms and information.

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Jon Sunder

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3 hours ago, __nevii said:

Lots of huge live oaks in the Lake Jackson region. Combined with Gulf proximity, that looks like a good microclimate for someone to grow some palms.

About the same as Houston. The real not often mentioned microclimate is the immediate shoreline along Galveston Bay south of Kemah all the way to Texas City. It's often warmer there than the east end of Galveston. 

Jonathan

Katy, TX (Zone 9a)

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2 hours ago, Xenon said:

About the same as Houston. The real not often mentioned microclimate is the immediate shoreline along Galveston Bay south of Kemah all the way to Texas City. It's often warmer there than the east end of Galveston. 

Yes, I think I've seen you mention that phenom in another thread. Those Galveston Bay areas are good to test as well, especially if one can get some live oaks/shade trees going. I find those microclimates vs East End Galveston interesting, given how shallow the water in the Bay is (i.e. which would imply faster cooling during winter cold events).

I had live oaks/shade trees in mind because of another thread on this forum concerning performance over in the St. Augustine, FL area, and so Lake Jackson with the old-growth specimen came to mind.

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1 hour ago, __nevii said:

Yes, I think I've seen you mention that phenom in another thread. Those Galveston Bay areas are good to test as well, especially if one can get some live oaks/shade trees going. I find those microclimates vs East End Galveston interesting, given how shallow the water in the Bay is (i.e. which would imply faster cooling during winter cold events).

I had live oaks/shade trees in mind because of another thread on this forum concerning performance over in the St. Augustine, FL area, and so Lake Jackson with the old-growth specimen came to mind.

Canopy works wonders in a radiational freeze by trapping ground heat escaping on a calm night. Not so much in an advective freeze where the winds are mixing everything up and blowing all of the heat away. 

A lot of the moderation Galveston gets is also from the "shallow" bays.  The bay system around the causeway and Moody Gardens (Offats Bayou) is some of the deepest water in the area so that's why the west end/Scholes Airport often runs warmer than east/downtown Galveston.  The Gulf does not help a whole lot when the winds are from the north/northwest. 

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Jonathan

Katy, TX (Zone 9a)

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16 hours ago, Xenon said:

Canopy works wonders in a radiational freeze by trapping ground heat escaping on a calm night. Not so much in an advective freeze where the winds are mixing everything up and blowing all of the heat away. 

A lot of the moderation Galveston gets is also from the "shallow" bays.  The bay system around the causeway and Moody Gardens (Offats Bayou) is some of the deepest water in the area so that's why the west end/Scholes Airport often runs warmer than east/downtown Galveston.  The Gulf does not help a whole lot when the winds are from the north/northwest. 

I'd imagine that "Smith Point" around Anahuac would be another microclimate stemming from the bay system.

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2 hours ago, Xenon said:

New date and mule palm mini golf jungle in Katy looking great 

Wish mules would catch on big time down here, especially in public plantings/businesses like that. If anyone has the imagination to put something besides a Sabal or Washingtonia they jump straight to Foxtail, and you can imagine how that works out. 

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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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Xenon,

https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/publication/PP163
 

Can you comment further on Lethal Bronzing? While this is not widely prevalent in PB County from my observation, I have definitely observed its existence. Is this malaise predicted to have the same consequences experienced during the horrible Lethal Yellowing episode that decimated the coconut palms in south Florida? Is it limited to Florida, Texas and Louisiana? It seems to affect nearly every variety of palm grown in Florida, and is spread by the same insect mechanism experienced in LY.

Thank you for the outstanding article. Any additional information or knowledge you have would be greatly appreciated.

What you look for is what is looking

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13 hours ago, bubba said:

Xenon,

https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/publication/PP163
 

Can you comment further on Lethal Bronzing? While this is not widely prevalent in PB County from my observation, I have definitely observed its existence. Is this malaise predicted to have the same consequences experienced during the horrible Lethal Yellowing episode that decimated the coconut palms in south Florida? Is it limited to Florida, Texas and Louisiana? It seems to affect nearly every variety of palm grown in Florida, and is spread by the same insect mechanism experienced in LY.

Thank you for the outstanding article. Any additional information or knowledge you have would be greatly appreciated.

All I know is in Texas, it has nearly wiped out old CIDP and also infects other Phoenix spp. to a lesser extent. It may affect other palms but I haven't seen any mass die off to the extent of CIDP. Can't speak for Florida...but it's probably not a coconut killer like LY 

 

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Jonathan

Katy, TX (Zone 9a)

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Some shots from Katy (west Houston suburbs) along I-10

"Near-robusta" are not happy but should survive

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Not a good year for new queen palms...

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New mules a bit singed but otherwise fine

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Bulletproof stuff of course didn't blink. Chamaerops and Butia did not burn at all like they did in 2021 (the only time I remember them ever being damaged). These Sabal mexicana (confirmed with big seeds) are actually rather uncommon but much prettier than palmetto imo

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CIDP also bulletproof, just dramatic 

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Pure(ish?) filifera vs a fat hybrid

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Jonathan

Katy, TX (Zone 9a)

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I’m surprised these two ribbon palms are looking this well , they only had their trunks protected fronds where all exposed to 17° a few weeks ago , planted a few weeks after the 2021 freeze 
Location south Houston zone 9A-B
the parking lot is also filled with 6 mid sized queens one has collapsed fronds the others are still stiff .

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On 12/30/2022 at 6:47 PM, Xerarch said:

Wish mules would catch on big time down here, especially in public plantings/businesses like that. If anyone has the imagination to put something besides a Sabal or Washingtonia they jump straight to Foxtail, and you can imagine how that works out. 

The palm installers, nurseries and Lowes in Corpus consider palms to be a truck load of Washingtonians, Mexican Sabals, Sylvesters, CID from the Rio Grande Valley or a truck load of Pigmys, Queens and Foxtails from Florida.  Wish one of the larger retail outlets in Houston would open up a branch outlet in Corpus and promote alternative choices to "the usual."

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10 minutes ago, WisTex said:

The palm installers, nurseries and Lowes in Corpus consider palms to be a truck load of Washingtonians, Mexican Sabals, Sylvesters, CID from the Rio Grande Valley or a truck load of Pigmys, Queens and Foxtails from Florida.  Wish one of the larger retail outlets in Houston would open up a branch outlet in Corpus and promote alternative choices to "the usual."

Palm professionals has a insane collection of palms that they sell here in Houston. They deliver to anyone in the greater Houston area , unfortunately corpus is too far …

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On 1/3/2023 at 11:32 PM, Xenon said:

Some shots from Katy (west Houston suburbs) along I-10

CIDP also bulletproof, just dramatic 

PXL_20230103_221320990.thumb.jpg.3215cd1298e874e9a3649733773735a1.jpg

 

Those CIDP got absolutely smoked. I had the same low as you here (about 17F) and more prolonged cold-duration, yet my smaller CIDP, which is also further away from any buildings, doesn't look anywhere near as bad. The spear is still solid and totally green. Photo was taken yesterday and it looks a bit better in person for sure. Only about 25-30% bronzing at most on the outer fronds, for now at least. Perhaps my damage is still waiting to show, since I will probably be waiting until about late-March to early-April for any kind of 70F+ temperatures.

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Edited by UK_Palms
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Dry-summer Oceanic climate (9a)

Average annual precipitation - 18.7 inches : Average annual sunshine hours - 1725

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I guess some people could not wait for their palms to recover here in North Houston lol …. This spot was pretty cold 16° 

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4 minutes ago, UK_Palms said:

 

Those CIDP got absolutely smoked. I had the same low as you here (about 17F) and more prolonged cold-duration, yet my smaller CIDP, which is also further away from any buildings, doesn't look anywhere near as bad. The spear is still solid and totally green. Photo was taken yesterday and it looks a bit better in person for sure. Only about 25-30% bronzing at most on the outer fronds, for now at least. Perhaps my damage is still waiting to show, since I will probably be waiting until about late-March to early-April for any kind of 70F+ temperatures.

 

Good luck with your CIDP. There are about a million CIDP here and I never worrry about them dying from cold. They don't even need irrigation or fertilizer; it's too bad lethal bronzing is their Achilles heel. 

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Jonathan

Katy, TX (Zone 9a)

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@Cade What a waste! I bet they would have got chopped up and put straight out with the trash too. That is crazy because it didn't even get that cold and the duration wasn't long at all for you guys, so they would have all come back fine within a matter of months, just as @Xenon says. 

I suppose if you've got money to throw around like that, which most of us don't (especially us younger folk) then you can afford to just replace everything at the drop of a hat. It still feels very wasteful though. No patience or perseverance whatsoever. Rich folk are usually the worst when it comes to sustainability. Like money solves everything for them.

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Dry-summer Oceanic climate (9a)

Average annual precipitation - 18.7 inches : Average annual sunshine hours - 1725

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On 1/8/2023 at 6:36 PM, Cade said:

I guess some people could not wait for their palms to recover here in North Houston lol …. This spot was pretty cold 16° 

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I'd be willing to bet those were moon palms still under warranty.  

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On 12/26/2022 at 8:16 PM, Keys6505 said:

Livistona Decora- about 7' tall overall.  I defoliated prior to wrapping, 1 strand mini lights, moving blanket, wrapped in plastic.  Plastic came off today, it's going to be 33ish tonight so I'll leave blanket on until tomorrow.

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Some updates:

Decora- coming back strong.  Fastest recovery out so far of all my trees surprisingly.  I had completely defoliated to protect.

 

20230114_145959.jpg

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1 minute ago, Keys6505 said:

Some updates:

Decora- coming back strong.  Fastest recovery out so far of all my trees surprisingly.  I had completely defoliated to protect.

 

20230114_145959.jpg

Looks great! I just bought some baby ones :) 

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On 12/26/2022 at 8:16 PM, Keys6505 said:

8' tall clump of Arenga Engleri.  My favorite palm.  I thought I lost it after the Feb '21 freeze but it came back, although it was the slowest to recover of all of them.  Ratchet strapped everything together, put a 100w reptile heat lamp underneath, threw a drop cloth over the top and then tented with 6mil plastic.

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Engleri (Englerii?) Still has a lot of green.  The supplemental heat made a huge difference vs 2021 when it completely defoliated.

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On 12/26/2022 at 8:29 PM, Keys6505 said:

Rhapis Excelsia- 7' tall clump, did surprisingly well after last freeze.  Sheet over the top, tented in plastic with a 100w bulb in a work light cage in the middle.  Uncovered today and doesn't really even look fazed at this point.

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Rhapis is a trooper

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On 12/26/2022 at 8:29 PM, Keys6505 said:

Archontophoenix Cunninghamiana- small triple about 6-7' overall.  Wrapped in C9's since there was space between the 3 trunks, wrapped in moving blanket, covered in a sheet, covered with a mattress bag.  I peeled off the sheet and plastic today and it looks pretty rough.  Don't have high hopes but after I remove the moving blanket tomorrow I'll poke around for any parts that look alive.

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The jury is still out on the Kings.  Looks like crap but trunks still green and spears still tight.  We'll see.

20230114_150035.jpg

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On 12/26/2022 at 8:38 PM, Keys6505 said:

Ravenea Rivularis - 10' tall overall, I defoliated, 2 strands of mini lights, wrapped in drop cloth, wrapped in plastic.  I screwed up and plugged in the wrong extension cord and didn't realize until night 3, so no supplemental heat for the worst of it.

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I still think pre-defoloation was the right move, the fronds were huge and I wouldn't have been able to protect.  Spear still tight and moving, some new green poking out.

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On 12/26/2022 at 8:38 PM, Keys6505 said:

Brahea Clara - 1 strand mini lights and wrapped in drop cloth.  Please excuse the weeds.

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Clara pretty much unphased

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On 12/26/2022 at 8:51 PM, Keys6505 said:

Bizzy 1: 2021 freeze survivor.  Leaves look much better this time than they did at the same point after 2021.20221226_125111.thumb.jpg.0c2423e7110270b603511bd31832296f.jpg

Bizzy 2: replacement for a 2021 Bizzy that didn't make it.  The wind was rough on the first night and knocked him over.  Leaves looks pretty good so far.20221225_110252.thumb.jpg.db9b4e10cc3e769c0380dac9a4e01fe0.jpg

Disappointed with the Bizzies, we made it through the first week plus with 70 degree days and full sun and all the leaves were holding their color but they just got real crispy looking in the past week.  Both going to be 100% defoliated.  Spears still tight.

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On 12/26/2022 at 8:51 PM, Keys6505 said:

Small Chinensis 

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Bigger Chinensis

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No protection on either of these.  Still some green.

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On 12/26/2022 at 8:51 PM, Keys6505 said:

Sabal Mexicanum and "Filifera" I bought that are actually mostly Robusta 

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Sabals are completely fine, but the "Filifera" are crispy

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Also an Acoelorrhaphe Wrightii that I didn't have on the original list.  I transplanted this across my yard in the fall because it was getting too big and stabby right next to my patio.  It was already chopped up from the transplant and it was covered under the same plastic tent as the Arenga Engleri but the heat was totally on the Engleri.  Doesn't seem to be in too much worse shape than it was before, I'm just worried the transplant and the freeze within a few months span might be too much for it

 

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On 1/8/2023 at 4:38 PM, Cade said:

I’m surprised these two ribbon palms are looking this well , they only had their trunks protected fronds where all exposed to 17° a few weeks ago , planted a few weeks after the 2021 freeze 
Location south Houston zone 9A-B
the parking lot is also filled with 6 mid sized queens one has collapsed fronds the others are still stiff .

Besides the large Livistona decora that were planted along IH-45 South, there was one that had set seed off US-59 in zone 8b Porter many years ago.  I collected some seeds and germinated one that I had planted in the ground in San Antonio but the ox beetle took it out.  Wish I knew the history of that palm in Porter as it was taken out at least 5 years ago but must have endured some upper teens.

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Jon Sunder

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