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Tall Windmills


BigBilly

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2 hours ago, teddytn said:

There was a post a few years back about some big windmills they moved from some “castle” maybe to near one of the Smithsonian museums, or the other way around. Made me remember it, there was some discussion about how they got that big in DC, considering they should be marginal at least planted out in the open there

Yes the Trachy you are mentioning was planted over 20 years ago at the Air and Space Museum and was moved in 2021 to the Haupt Garden at the Smithsonian Castle down the street due to the ongoing renovations at the Air and Space Museum. It's still growing strong, after over 20 years unprotected, it survived 2014.

Here are some other big local windmill palms that survived 2014. Note the common factor: a south-facing wall!

 

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On 4/27/2023 at 7:05 AM, DreaminAboutPalms said:

Columbia South Carolina at The Legends at Lake Murray Apartments

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The northern states "robusta" lol.

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This is the tallest one I've seen in the PNW.  I'm sure there are others around that have it beat, maybe in Seattle or Portland.   

I think 25' was a conservative estimate so no one could argue with me.  Real guess, ~35 feet.  There's one in my town that I estimate to be 25' and looking back, it's probably 10-12' shorter than the Puyallup palm.  I think this one has well over 20' of clear trunk.  

 And here's the one in my little farm-town that I estimate to be 25'.   I estimate 16' of clear trunk. 

 

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Pullen Park Raleigh NC. Believe the tallest one declined and passed away in 2020 though

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Edited by DreaminAboutPalms
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54 minutes ago, DreaminAboutPalms said:

Pullen Park Raleigh NC. Believe the tallest one declined and passed away in 2020 though

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Us northern people’s robusta is a nice tall skirted windmill palm, if I would be in Canada I would find one.

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3 hours ago, BigBilly said:

You know trachys look better without pruning especially when they're tall

For sure.  You should never prune a tall Trachy.  Here's video proof of the dangers. 

 

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17 hours ago, DreaminAboutPalms said:

Switzerland... .

Trachy forest is at continental Parkhotel Lugano

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I’ve seen pics of palms in Switzerland before, just looked it up, apparently they have areas that are 8b?! Seems crazy, not that it’s like a southern U.S. 8b, but definitely opens up possibilities for really cool gardens with those minimum temps. 

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41 minutes ago, teddytn said:

I’ve seen pics of palms in Switzerland before, just looked it up, apparently they have areas that are 8b?! Seems crazy, not that it’s like a southern U.S. 8b, but definitely opens up possibilities for really cool gardens with those minimum temps. 

 

The palms look incredible here. Would never have expected this at all

 

 

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A little off topic but why do these skinned windmill palms look aesthetically good. 

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On 4/29/2023 at 6:01 PM, Jesse PNW said:

For sure.  You should never prune a tall Trachy.  Here's video proof of the dangers. 

That guy is his own worst enemy. Wow.

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4 hours ago, ChicagoPalma said:

A little off topic but why do these skinned windmill palms look aesthetically good. 

It's recommended to NOT remove the trunk fiber and petiole bases in marginal growing zones. It provides added insulation during colder events. I suppose that sounds plausible. Looks are an individual perception.

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4 hours ago, ChicagoPalma said:

why do these skinned windmill palms look aesthetically good. 

to me personally, they are different and with the un-natural lack of leaf bases and fibers, they look more tropical resembling some of the cocothrinax species

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Lucas

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2 hours ago, Little Tex said:

to me personally, they are different and with the un-natural lack of leaf bases and fibers, they look more tropical resembling some of the cocothrinax species

It’s the tropical look that makes it nice.

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8 hours ago, Las Palmas Norte said:

It's recommended to NOT remove the trunk fiber and petiole bases in marginal growing zones. It provides added insulation during colder events. I suppose that sounds plausible. Looks are an individual perception.

I wouldn't if I lived in a colder zone.  Here I wouldn't be concerned.  I like the unmanicured look, but a bare trunk here and there adds some nice variety. 

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9 hours ago, Jesse PNW said:

I wouldn't if I lived in a colder zone.  Here I wouldn't be concerned.  I like the unmanicured look, but a bare trunk here and there adds some nice variety. 

true but I protect the windmills either using the box method.

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12 hours ago, Jesse PNW said:

I wouldn't if I lived in a colder zone.  Here I wouldn't be concerned.  I like the unmanicured look, but a bare trunk here and there adds some nice variety. 

My sentiments exactly. I did some trunk stripping but a small amount on a couple of Windmill palms. One started quite by accident when I noticed the fiber and old petiole bases loose and easily removed by hand. I did some additional stripping but left much of the trunk intact.

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On 4/29/2023 at 5:25 PM, DreaminAboutPalms said:

Pullen Park Raleigh NC. Believe the tallest one declined and passed away in 2020 though

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Wow those are tall

Edited by BigBilly
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I think the with palmettos at least when they get really up there 40’ range the vertical growth per year slows way down. Is that the same with windmills? 
 

Part 2 lol. What’s old age for a windmill? 

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19 hours ago, teddytn said:

I think the with palmettos at least when they get really up there 40’ range the vertical growth per year slows way down. Is that the same with windmills? 
 

Part 2 lol. What’s old age for a windmill? 

1. Height does seem to slow down with age.

2. I have never seen one die of old age. I did see some that had been planted in 1949 and they looked fine.

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21 minutes ago, PaPalmTree said:

Capitol Park in Sacramento.

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Crazy skinny! California has some of the tallest Trachys anywhere, the diversity of climates there allows them to look quite different in different parts of the state. They of course do great along to cool, foggy NorCal coast, much like the PNW, but they also do well (if they're watered) in SoCal and grow insanely tall and skinny. Same goes for the hot Central Valley, and I've seen many very tall and skinny ones in the small towns up in the Sierra foothills.

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27 minutes ago, Alex High said:

Crazy skinny! California has some of the tallest Trachys anywhere, the diversity of climates there allows them to look quite different in different parts of the state. They of course do great along to cool, foggy NorCal coast, much like the PNW, but they also do well (if they're watered) in SoCal and grow insanely tall and skinny. Same goes for the hot Central Valley, and I've seen many very tall and skinny ones in the small towns up in the Sierra foothills.

Yeah it's crazy how skinny they can grow 

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3 hours ago, PaPalmTree said:

Yeah it's crazy how skinny they can grow 

So much so that they appear to be susceptible to snapping in half in a strong gust of wind.

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17 hours ago, Alex High said:

Crazy skinny! California has some of the tallest Trachys anywhere, the diversity of climates there allows them to look quite different in different parts of the state. They of course do great along to cool, foggy NorCal coast, much like the PNW, but they also do well (if they're watered) in SoCal and grow insanely tall and skinny. Same goes for the hot Central Valley, and I've seen many very tall and skinny ones in the small towns up in the Sierra foothills.

You're so right it's interesting seeing how they vary .

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On 4/30/2023 at 5:22 PM, teddytn said:

I’ve seen pics of palms in Switzerland before, just looked it up, apparently they have areas that are 8b?! Seems crazy, not that it’s like a southern U.S. 8b, but definitely opens up possibilities for really cool gardens with those minimum temps. 

Even 9a. There are very mild locations in Southern Switzerland with long term CIDPs and Washies and even Parajubaeas. It's very crazy because the winters are much milder and sunnier than the ones further South behind the mountains in Northern Italy. There it only gets milder towards the coast.

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8 hours ago, Hortulanus said:

Even 9a. There are very mild locations in Southern Switzerland with long term CIDPs and Washies and even Parajubaeas. It's very crazy because the winters are much milder and sunnier than the ones further South behind the mountains in Northern Italy. There it only gets milder towards the coast.

This sounds Interesting! Is there any specific towns you notice with high palm populations?

Lucas

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13 hours ago, Little Tex said:

This sounds Interesting! Is there any specific towns you notice with high palm populations?

Not in particular as most places there are quiet small. Usually palms are planted at the promenades along the Southern lakes of Switzerland. Here is just an example:

 

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Here's an update on one of D.C.'s largest Trachys. It is in a perfect microclimate, in the urban heat island right between the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers and right up against a south-facing wall. That seems to be the key for the long-term survival of Trachys here, all the pre-2014 Trachys I've seen are against a south-facing wall.

 

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This thread has made me fall in love with these palms. So, i found one at Lowes, and now its on my back patio. Ill be finding a good spot for it in the yard soon. Very excited.

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Palms - 4 S. romanzoffiana, 1 W. bifurcata, 4 W. robusta, 1 R. rivularis, 1 B. odorata, 1 B. nobilis, 4 S. palmetto, 1 A. merillii, 2 P. canariensis, 1 BxJ, 1 BxJxBxS, 1 BxS, 3 P. roebelenii, 1 H. lagenicaulis, 1 H. verschaffeltii, 9 T. fortunei, 1 C. humilis, 2 C. macrocarpa, 1 L. chinensis, 1 R. excelsa, 1 S. bermudana, 1 L. nitida

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Underappreciated thing is that Fortuneis look a lot better when tall than Waggies/Wagnerians do, while this is kind of inverse when they are small. Hah.

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8 hours ago, Zeni said:

Underappreciated thing is that Fortuneis look a lot better when tall than Waggies/Wagnerians do, while this is kind of inverse when they are small. Hah.

I don't see the appeal of waggies 

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46 minutes ago, BigBilly said:

I don't see the appeal of waggies 

Waggies are nice for smaller gardens, at very windy locations, or as container plants (bonsai-ish aesthetics).

Nevertheless, when Waggies get over 2 meters/6'5'' feet they start looking disproportionate/kind of weird, too bad, but that was the trade-off made when it was being selectively bred. Nainitals have rather stiff fronds as do Fortunei-Princeps hybrids, so people opting for Waggies due to wind should try those instead, IMO, but there's still limited garden space causing people to opt for Waggies.

Lastly, many beginners impulse buy them at shops because they look cute (lol), or you also got palm collectors like many of us buying them for sake of variety. My two cents.

Edited by Zeni
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