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Washingtonia transplant shock


Palmlex

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Hi,

I'm having a bit of an unusual issue, but maybe some of you could give me some insight on this. I live in zone 7 and had a Washingtonia in the ground for a couple of years. It grew to about 6 feet (tip of frond). 

Last year I had to move, so I dug up the palm in December, taking care to disturb as little of the roots as possible, but inevitably a lot of them had to be cut, and I potted it up in a pot filled with cactus mix, and brought it inside in a room with artificial light that stays at around 68F (20C). I only watered the palm after around a month and a half after planting, because the soil never really dried out more than 1 inch from the surface.

Fast forward to now, the palm has lost all its fronds but still seems to hold onto the spears (for now - it had a slightly opened spear that dried out like a month ago).

For the next couple of weeks we're going to have daytime temperatures around 60F (15C) and night time lows of around 37F (3C) and I was wondering if maybe I should move it outside, since I'm afraid it might get root rot inside. (Most of my plants that die, die that way I believe).

Do you think I should keep it inside until everything warms up (april-ish) and risk root rot or let it face the world, as long as it's not freezing outside?

Edited by Palmlex
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Honestly, you should've waited till spring to remove it from the ground. I'm guessing you will have to repot it in a bigger pot by two inches to help root development, and some palm fertilizer might help. If the spears are green and they are pushing out, you should probably let it out in the BRAVE OUTDOORS. Also that is way too warm for a zone 7 winter to be in the 60s day time and 30s night time.

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45 minutes ago, ChicagoPalma said:

Honestly, you should've waited till spring to remove it from the ground. I'm guessing you will have to repot it in a bigger pot by two inches to help root development, and some palm fertilizer might help. If the spears are green and they are pushing out, you should probably let it out in the BRAVE OUTDOORS. Also that is way too warm for a zone 7 winter to be in the 60s day time and 30s night time.

Actually no it isn’t, USDA zones arent determined by regular averages they are determined by extreme low averages. Although I think Bucharest is 8b, but @Palmlex doesnt disclose where he located.

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Lucas

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He disclosed his zone, although I understand where you are coming from, and the extreme averages for my zone 6a/5b is sort of the averages in january, but I get it.

2 hours ago, Palmlex said:

Hi,

I'm having a bit of an unusual issue, but maybe some of you could give me some insight on this. I live in zone 7 and had a Washingtonia in the ground for a couple of years. It grew to about 6 feet (tip of frond). 

Last year I had to move, so I dug up the palm in December, taking care to disturb as little of the roots as possible, but inevitably a lot of them had to be cut, and I potted it up in a pot filled with cactus mix, and brought it inside in a room with artificial light that stays at around 68F (20C). I only watered the palm after around a month and a half after planting, because the soil never really dried out more than 1 inch from the surface.

Fast forward to now, the palm has lost all its fronds but still seems to hold onto the spears (for now - it had a slightly opened spear that dried out like a month ago).

For the next couple of weeks we're going to have daytime temperatures around 60F (15C) and night time lows of around 37F (3C) and I was wondering if maybe I should move it outside, since I'm afraid it might get root rot inside. (Most of my plants that die, die that way I believe).

Do you think I should keep it inside until everything warms up (april-ish) and risk root rot or let it face the world, as long as it's not freezing outside?

I do understand what you are saying @Little Tex but in my zone, the extreme averages become the averages around january every year, so It is different in every zone.

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38 minutes ago, ChicagoPalma said:

He disclosed his zone, although I understand where you are coming from, and the extreme averages for my zone 6a/5b is sort of the averages in january, but I get it.

I do understand what you are saying @Little Tex but in my zone, the extreme averages become the averages around january every year, so It is different in every zone.

I know his zone, I meant his location, and yeah, every zone is different

Lucas

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Usually the best time to transplant any palm would be during the growing season late spring or early summer.  That was probably your first mistake.  Your palm is experiencing a shock and struggles to survive.  I also don't recommend to fertilize a palm outside of the growing season mid March to mid October.  If you feed your palm in their dormancy period it can cause root burning . Your palm can't absorb all nutrients in that time ,the excessive nutrients will accumulate in soil. As long as you're above freezing temperatures I would put it outside so it can soak up more sun . 

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13 hours ago, Palmlex said:

Hi,

I'm having a bit of an unusual issue, but maybe some of you could give me some insight on this. I live in zone 7 and had a Washingtonia in the ground for a couple of years. It grew to about 6 feet (tip of frond). 

Last year I had to move, so I dug up the palm in December, taking care to disturb as little of the roots as possible, but inevitably a lot of them had to be cut, and I potted it up in a pot filled with cactus mix, and brought it inside in a room with artificial light that stays at around 68F (20C). I only watered the palm after around a month and a half after planting, because the soil never really dried out more than 1 inch from the surface.

Fast forward to now, the palm has lost all its fronds but still seems to hold onto the spears (for now - it had a slightly opened spear that dried out like a month ago).

For the next couple of weeks we're going to have daytime temperatures around 60F (15C) and night time lows of around 37F (3C) and I was wondering if maybe I should move it outside, since I'm afraid it might get root rot inside. (Most of my plants that die, die that way I believe).

Do you think I should keep it inside until everything warms up (april-ish) and risk root rot or let it face the world, as long as it's not freezing outside?

It'll recover. I don't know why you dug it up, though. A W.robusta is the cheapest palm to purchase. They're practically disposable.

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18 hours ago, ChicagoPalma said:

Honestly, you should've waited till spring to remove it from the ground. I'm guessing you will have to repot it in a bigger pot by two inches to help root development, and some palm fertilizer might help. If the spears are green and they are pushing out, you should probably let it out in the BRAVE OUTDOORS. Also that is way too warm for a zone 7 winter to be in the 60s day time and 30s night time.

I would have waited for spring if I had the option. The pot is decently sized and the soil in it already stays wet for very long inside, so I'm afraid of root rot if I up pot it.

 

17 hours ago, Little Tex said:

Actually no it isn’t, USDA zones arent determined by regular averages they are determined by extreme low averages. Although I think Bucharest is 8b, but @Palmlex doesnt disclose where he located.

There's no official zone system here. However with data from the past 22 years, I can say the zone appears to be borderline 7b (bordering 7a). Most winters are warmer than that, however, temperatures can swing drastically during cold fronts and even get to a zone 6 winter.

 

6 hours ago, SeanK said:

It'll recover. I don't know why you dug it up, though. A W.robusta is the cheapest palm to purchase. They're practically disposable.

I dug it up because it had no chance there unprotected and it already has the base of the trunk thicker than my leg. A Washingtonia of that size here can be bought from like only one store and for around $500 if not more. A smaller one would take a couple of years to get to this size, so I took a chance.

Edited by Palmlex
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