winter wrapping

Discussion in 'Outdoor Tropicals' started by honolua, Jul 31, 2009.

  1. honolua

    honolua Active Member

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    What is the consensus on the best way to wrap palms for the winter? Is in fact tying them up and creating around them, a little mini "greenhouse" with poly and posts? Is it to wrap them up a bit with burlap and then some sort of plastic-like cover for the crown? Of course I am referring to those that may be a little less cold-hardy or experimental. I seem to have had mixed luck with some success with the burlap and poly mummy wrap thing, and some failure with rot occurring. I have also done the wire cage around the baby palms that need protecting, with dry hay inside and then a poly wrap around that. My challenge seems to be the fine balance between air circulation and dampness getting in as the south west coast of Canada gets that cold damp, rainy stuff most winters. So how do I not wrap all the way to the bottom so moisture does not wick up and into the inside of the wrap material, but also ensure enough cold protection is there (not too open and gaping)?
    What have others found in colder wet winters?
    thanks
     
  2. Katalina25

    Katalina25 New Member

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  3. jokersmith

    jokersmith Member

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    Great link, I printed it off just for a handy reference. I have my palms in pots this year because the ones that were in the ground last year did not do so well.
     
  4. Katalina25

    Katalina25 New Member

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    Don't plant anything deeper that the rootball.
     
  5. jokersmith

    jokersmith Member

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    Great advice. I had a nice Windmill Palm here in michigan that was in the ground, grew nice all last summer. When winter came i built a little greenhouse around it because the tree was only about 5 feet tall. I used PVC pipe for the skeleton then wrapped it in clear plastic, put a clear plexiglass lid on the top. I wrapped the tree itslef with rope lights to keep it warmer. It did well and the heat from inside would actually melt the snow off the top, but when spring came and i opened the greenhouse, the tree had some brown leaves and it began to rot inside, it died soon after.
     
  6. Katalina25

    Katalina25 New Member

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    Yep...polythene will do that joker,

    It sweats you see, and then rot sets in, then desease follows that then..well..you know already what follows.

    Fllleeeeeeeeeece it. and then possibly you could do the rest. I think that wire round, then the fleece is adaquat unless your winters are really severe and snow very deep.

    My fleece blows off the darn trees lolol and I am forever going out to re-wrap. I think this year fleece earlier and on a calm day. I also need to find a better way to tie the fleece, green soft garden twine did'nt work last year.
     
  7. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    What is fleece? I've gardened for 30 years and never heard of it (here) and don't no of anyone who does. If it where available, surely I'd have seen it by now.

    Cheers, LPN.
     
  8. Katalina25

    Katalina25 New Member

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  9. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    I had a look ... nope, never seen it before in use. You'z guyz are way ahead of us here anyway.

    Cheers, LPN.
     
  10. honolua

    honolua Active Member

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    Fleece is that lovely material used in winter hoodies and sweaters that is fluffy, kind of like the batton used to stuff the inside of pillows. You see it even at Home Depot in the garden department as winter covering for shrubs.....similar to Remay cloth, but not as good as Remay. Often it is white, and you slip it over the shrub or hanging basket to protect it. It keeps frost off, but allows air ciruculation. I wrapped one palm trunk in a fleece blanket I bought for cheap at Ikea, and it did the trick....doesn't completely keep out moisture (if one thickness only, but when wrapped round & round, it can), but helps with warmth and air.

    Thanks for all the tips on the winter wrapping. I have never had luck with the poly enclosure as I always get condensation, mold and then rot, even when I have an escape window flap on it for hot air to get out. I have never been able to get adequate air movement with poly enclosures....maybe I am doing them up too tightly and need to leave one side completely open?
    thanks
     
  11. Katalina25

    Katalina25 New Member

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    The whole point of fleece is, it prevents drying out. It allows water and as long as rain can drain away its a fab material. You only need to wrap the tree not the ground it sits.

    With fleece you are preventing frost damage, and wind burn, large amounts of snow that bend the branches.
     
  12. wxman

    wxman Member

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    I use double poly enclosures on my palms (washingtonia and trachy) and they didn't rot. That's right a zone 8/9 palm in Wisconsin! Framed the enclosure with 2x2 wood, then stapled a layer on the inside and outside so there was 1 1/2" of air space in between the layers. Lid had a hard plywood top with a layer of poly stapled underneath. Heat was 125 watt heat lamp and string of Christmas lights. Check it out.

    Moisture was built up on the inside of the enclosure all winter. I didn't water them at all. I think the person using single layer of poly and rope lights in Michigan actually had cold damage. I had a remote thermometer in mine and when we were below zero I struggled keeping them above freezing and that was with two layers of poly and an insulating air space.
     

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  13. jokersmith

    jokersmith Member

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    Thats a very good idea. Maybe the dual layer poly would be better. I still have mine in pots so they will be going inside this winter, maybe I will attempt the transplant next spring. Even though with HIs only in the upper 60's for the next week it already is starting to feel like winter. :(
     
  14. honolua

    honolua Active Member

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    wow....that is incredible that you had no rot. With the amount of snow in your photos, there was clearly no air circulation as the bottoms were covered in feet of snow. I am glad it worked out for you....I think I will stick to remay cloth/fleece and a cap to prevent snow from going in the crown. I am too nervous to do poly again!
    thanks,
     
  15. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member

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    I will never complain about our weather again. The handstands you lot do to keep yr plants alive....very impressive.

    Re fleece is that the polyester stuff found in some cheap (non duck down) doonas (duvet). If so you might be able to pick some up at the opportunity (2nd hand) shops if you have them. I have several for my dogs to sleep on.

    Liz
     
  16. Katalina25

    Katalina25 New Member

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    Snow,

    Would you take a look at that. Now, thats what I call snow...my giddy aunt thats some snow.

    Our snow is a dusting then, thats it. Another winter gone lol

    But the second pic is beautiful, what fine specimens wxman, thanks for sharing your garden.A lovely place you live too.

    Liz I am jumping through hoops with a new plant, It does'nt like wet feet, and here its still monsoon type weather.
     
  17. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member

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    I ws in the old "dart" about 20 years ago and you were actualy having one of the driest summers on record. There were even water restrictions. Here I was with woolly type clothes because some one had told me England was wet and cool over summer. Was really lovely our Autumn type warm. Sounds as tho i might have hit the jackpot that year. We have had some rain but no where near enough for most of the state. I am green and well watered here at the moment but north of us about 400 MILES they are fighting major bushfires already. Think we might be in for an interesting summer.

    Liz
     
  18. Katalina25

    Katalina25 New Member

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    No definately not, nothing like it Liz.

    Its like an extremely strong paper but with almost invisable tiny air holes to allow water in but keep jack frost out. You will see it here mainly on Spruce trees because most of our plants are hardy to around minus 1 so its not needed. This year I will wrap my spruces also my Agave attenuata (swans's neck), and my golf plant both from Tenerife, and the maderia plant bought recently which loves the warmth..hard luck I just hope to try and get it through our mild winters.

    I say mild but the Rowan trees have had red berries on them for at least a month a sure indicator of a not so warm winter.

    Oh to be in Australia now your summer is on the horizon.
     
  19. Katalina25

    Katalina25 New Member

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    That image of that palm is really nice and I do hope Robv can get me the seed...prays..
     
  20. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member

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    No you don't want our summer they get too hot. Just been reading re California fires...yuk... you don't want them either injoy yr soft summers. Thanks for the explanation re fleece. Don't think they sell it here :)

    Liz
     
  21. Katalina25

    Katalina25 New Member

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  22. honolua

    honolua Active Member

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    Ok,
    My question is: how to provide a rain cover, without using plastic? It seems many sites list using insulating wrapping around the trunk, and protecting the crown with a rain cover...but don't use plastic as rot will occur.
    Can a few layers of frost paper/fleece be enough? Given it lets in a bit of water, can that work in the pacific northwest where temps may on occasion dip down low enough for that water to freeze, or is the fleece enough to keep that little bit of water it lets in, warm and thus avoiding freezing in the crown?
    thanks
    What is the best way to protect the crown in cool, rainy winters?
     
  23. Katalina25

    Katalina25 New Member

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    I just gave the link to the fleece Honolua.

    My climate does not freeze like yours does, thank goodness so I use only one layer round my small spruces.

    My biggest tree is my Acer which stands only about 4ft x 4ft at its highest and widest and needs no cover due to no winter leaf.

    Something like a palm in your country, at the height of your - temps would need cover from head to foot.

    You should be fine with several layers of fleece.
     
  24. honolua

    honolua Active Member

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    thanks,
    We mostly get rain, occationaly mixed with snow and at the worst, a dusting of snow that lasts overnight and melts as soon as day breaks. Last winter we had the storm of the century with the worst temps and snow fall in over 65 years, so that was odd. I have several palms that are a few years old, that usually do fine. I am pushing things this year with some palms that are on the cusp of zone 8 so I will have to winter-wrap those, but not all of my palms need winter protection as it does not get usually that cold. In fact, many kids complain about the green Christmas we have with 5-10 degrees celcius and no snow in sight! Still, after last winter, I will indeed protect those less hardy. I figure a good wrap with some burlap and fleece will do, with loose plastic over the crown on very cold snaps. That should help to protect the crown, I THINK! We'll see!
     
  25. soccerdad

    soccerdad Active Member 10 Years

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    I will need to wrap a few banana plants this fall, so have you found this fleece in Vancouver?

    I first assumed that it was what we call "fleece" in this country - a wool-like substance used to make hoodies or to stuff insulated vests - and this paper-like stuff rings absolutely no bells with me.
     

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