Potential Palm Growing Areas In BC

Discussion in 'Outdoor Tropicals' started by JamieR, Nov 20, 2004.

  1. JamieR

    JamieR Member

    Likes Received:
    Port Moody USDA zone 8b
    I was just wondering if anyone knows of palm being grown in areas other then our mild coastal regions? Recently, I've been looking at climate statistics and growing degree day maps, and it occurred to me that certain areas might actually be better for growing certain palms, other than Vancouver, Victoria, and the coastal areas. That is, palms which require more summer heat, and longer growing seasons.

    The Chilliwack-Agassiz area, with a slighter longer growing season, higher summer humidity and higher summer temp's might actually be better for growing Sabal, Rhapidophyllum, and perhaps even Serenoa. Penticton and Osoyoos and surrounding areas could be perfect areas for Nannorrhops, and perhaps Rhapidophyllum with extra watering in the summer. Maybe even Trithrinax campestris could survive, in a microclimate somewhere in the Interior.

    I’d be interested to know if palms are being tried in any of these areas, and anyone’s thoughts on the possibility.
  2. Deneb1978

    Deneb1978 Active Member 10 Years

    Likes Received:
    Growing Palms in the interior

    Hi there,

    Well, I think you might have problems growing most species of palms in the Okanagan (Penticton and Osoyoos) because they are prone to extreme cold spells every so often which can kill the plants. It's been known to get below -25C on occasion in both Penticton and Osoyoos when a cold arctic front blows down. I don't think there are really any palms that could withstand that except for maybe the needle palm, reportedly the hardiest palm in the world which is grown as far north as new england on the east coast. The needle palm also prefers warmer drier conditions so I'm told so I think it would do fine there as the summers in the Okanagan are definitely conducive to good growing conditions.

    As far as Chilliwack goes, it's more promising and I'm sure there are a few species of palm you could try there but when the cold spells occur, you'll definitely have to protect the plants there over the winter.

    I hope this helps. Good luck!

  3. Wes North Van

    Wes North Van Active Member 10 Years

    Likes Received:
    North Vancouver BC Canada

    I agree only the needle palm has a chance in both locations. Even then you have to be prepared to protect it during your colder cold spells.
    Chilliwack is fine for growing palms such as the trachycarpus species. The PNWPEPS has quite a few members in Chilliwack.
  4. I live in El Paso, Texas. However, I am from Michigan. I know that a man has been growing Trachycarpus Fortuei in Kalamazoo, which is USDA zone 6. I think that Trachycurpus Fortunei might actully make it in cetain Okanagan microclimates.

  5. Gregn

    Gregn Active Member 10 Years

    Likes Received:
    North Vancouver
    you could try a Trachycarpus Takil with protection during those severe arctic blasts
    it may be ok. The true Takil is a very rare (endangered species) and is hardy to
    -21 C. I have not seen a large specimen. I bought 2 from a grower in Delta this spring
    and both are thriving. they are 5 years old and about 30 cm tall (a long term project)
    I plan to keep them in planters unill they are about 1 metre tall and put them in my attached garage over the winter.
    A serenoa repens is hardy apperantly to -5F it is more of a bush and would be easier to protect during cold spells also the nuts are edible I dont know where to get one in the lower mainland
    (vancouver area) does anyone know?
  6. seahawks2884

    seahawks2884 Member

    Likes Received:
    Kelowna British Columbia
    www.bg-map.com/hardiplm.html#desc The Okanagan 6 and 6b is Probably the only other area outside the lower mainland and Vancouver island where cold hardy palms will survive year round. I have done some research and have found 5b zones where cold hardy palms will grow. I think the key might be cold stratification and seeds produced from these to make even more cold hardy palms! If they can grow in Colorado,Philadelphia,New Jersey ect ,they can grow here in the Okanagan . Many of Vancourites and Victorians would have scoffed at the idea of growing palm trees only a couple of decades ago now look at the result of the vision of some pioneers to try. The city of Vancouver and Victoria are planting Palms in their parks and public places, beautiful British Columbia ,be proud . I think trachy takil , latisectus, fortunei as well as sabol birmingham, minor ,chamaroeps humilis, mazari palm ,jelly palm ,trithrinax campestris, rha- hystrix will ,given time be a good fit here in the Okanagan desert. Patience, determination ,and research will bring palms to the Okanagan Valley! some sites to check out http://hometown.aol.com/fitzroya/myhomepage/cooking.html

Share This Page