Winterizing Windmill Palms Trees

Discussion in 'Outdoor Gardening in the Pacific Northwest' started by Ellen 2002, Nov 14, 2019.

  1. Ellen 2002

    Ellen 2002 Member

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    Hello! I have three small - under three feet, Windmill palm trees. I was wondering what precautions I should take to protect them from snow and ice. I live in Nanaimo. Thank you!

    Ellen
     
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  2. Sulev

    Sulev Active Member

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    They should do just fine in your climate without any protection.
     
  3. Ellen 2002

    Ellen 2002 Member

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    Hi Sulev - Thank you for the reply. Should I buy more bark mulch to beef up around the trunk? Thank!
     
  4. Georgia Strait

    Georgia Strait Rising Contributor

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    it depends what part of Nanaimo you are in I would think - if you are in a sheltered warm spot by the ocean - OK

    but if you are up by the Inland Highway - that might be a diff story

    I happened to see some wraps specifically for palms at a local Vancouver area high-end nursery today

    there are some other threads on here about palms (search tool is above)
    Nanaimo seaside palms to be turned down :(

    here is a local nursery link
    Ken-Dor Garden Center - Nursery & Garden, Plants, Fertilizer & Gardening Supplies, Flowers, Planting - Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
     
  5. Sulev

    Sulev Active Member

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    If you foresee temperature dropping below -15°C, then you could take some protective measures. Those palm trees should be hardy down to -20°C, and if well established, then temporarily even down to -25°C. I suppose you do not have long lasting frosts there.
    I know, that some enthusiasts grow these palm trees even in my country, that is by several hardiness zones colder and where temperatures below -20°C could last for several weeks. Here they protect those palms from harsh winter conditions by wrapping whole plant (above the ground) into winter covers, similar to the floating row cover, but thicker.
     
  6. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    To check for local suitability (as unprotected landscape features) look around to see if there are any long-established ones in your district, they are likely to be there if winter conditions are not excluding them. In my area car dealerships for instance often have numbers of them. I also see them at more than one local motel, as well as at a percentage of Mexican restaurants.
     
  7. Ellen 2002

    Ellen 2002 Member

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    Hello Georgia Strait and thank you for your reply! I am attaching a picture of the three palms - when you click on the picture, it will expand. That is my banana "tree" in the foreground that I already have covered for the Winter with Hot Water Tank insulation :).

    They have been planted in that same spot for one year and two months now..............

    Thank you for your help!
     

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    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 26, 2019
  8. Georgia Strait

    Georgia Strait Rising Contributor

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    Up here north of 49th - i’d be looking for the decent Mexican restaurant ! (Not thé palm tree )

    Kidding aside - I agree w your suggestion of scouting other palms in the n’hood

    one thing that happens hère like Portland and areas of Seattle, the Gulf Islands (san Juan’s) and Mt Vernon / BLI up in to our side of the border Fraser Valley and Howe Sound too is that overnight in winter that huge arctic outflow air comes down the fjords/valleys fr interior hi pressure and the temp drops in front of our eyes (on the digital therm display)

    Then that ice cold air fr Fraser Valley interior goes straight across the Salish Sea where on east Vanc Isl it meets wet clouds coming off the Pacific and white ice snow falls (where it might not be snow on the Sunshine Coast ) ... UBC main campus can be full of snow but nothing downtown (would not want to drive a b-line bus up 10th!)
     
  9. Ellen 2002

    Ellen 2002 Member

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    Yes, I am in south Nanaimo, in the older part, not far from the water, but we do get that artic outflow....Probably would be a good idea to buy more mulch for around the base of the plant, and wrap the trunk with burlap, as it would make me sick to see these beautiful plants die!
     
  10. Sulev

    Sulev Active Member

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  11. Ellen 2002

    Ellen 2002 Member

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    Thank you Sulev!
     
  12. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Be careful not to cover the trunk as this could promote rot or fungus. Don't leave it wrapped once weather breaks. The most tender part is the new growth point where the fronds emerge.
    The most vulnerable seem to be smaller specimen like yours that are imported from California. Once they get rooted down and established over a couple of years, they'll be just fine.
    There are countless Windmill palms all over the Nanaimo area. Some nice tall 30' plus feet are next to the Gov't offices across from the parking garage downtown.
    Cheers.
     
  13. Ellen 2002

    Ellen 2002 Member

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    Hi LPN and thank you for the info!

    I was fortunate enough to get the two smaller ones from a friend whose parent's plant in at their residence in Nanoose Bay "had babies" so to speak.

    I have managed to cover all three for one more year with covers from Nuvue Shub Covers from Home Depot.

    Next year, they will undoubtedly grow quite a bit again, the I will definitely refer to everyone's very helpful advice from this forum as they were not fit under the covers another time.

    (See photos)

    I used to live I Courtenay, LPN, before I moved to Nanaimo, years ago... beautiful place!

    Thank you for your advice!
     

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    Last edited: Jan 2, 2020
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  14. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    I was the reverse of you. I lived in Lantzville for 18 years before moving to Courtenay last May.
    Good that you got local palms. They adapt much quicker. Perhaps you where around my hobby nursery, Las Palmas Norte back in the mid 2000's.
    I ran it for several years until the RDN wanted me to re-zone and have an engineer certify my greenhouse/cold frame.
    I surrendered my tax numbers to the feds and the province, and flew under the radar for a couple more years.
    Cheers.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2020
  15. Dan-O88

    Dan-O88 Member

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    I would think having the covers on would promote more issues then just leaving them off (fungus etc...). Snow press could be an issue too if you forget to take them off.

    I used to live in Campbell River which gets far colder than Nanaimo and my 3 small windmill palms sailed through the past 5 winters I have had them planted with 0 issues. In fact, even in the dead of winter the palms will still grow (slowly) during the warmer spells of weather!
     
  16. Ellen 2002

    Ellen 2002 Member

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    I was living in Lantzille in the mid 2000's. That is why your sign was familiar
     
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  17. Ellen 2002

    Ellen 2002 Member

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    Hi Dan, and thank you for the reply!

    I have used the these covers for several years now, on other plants like the Phormiums as snow will to a number on them, but they outgrew the covers do I put them over the palms.

    I do go out and check them as I have Musa basjoo (bananas) that are covered as well. You pay a lot of money, and not to mention the time and the effort that goes into these tropical plants, but the enjoyment when they are not covered up in the other months makes it all worthwhile!

    Dan, yes you get hit hard by the weather in Campbell River sometimes, and I am glad to hear your plants are doing so well!
     
  18. pmurphy

    pmurphy Contributor

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    Pacific Northwest Palm & Exotic Plant Society Mentorship Program

    Need expert advice on care or selection of palms and other exotic plants? Edith Camm (former club president) has a list of experts, many with 30 plus years of experience, eager to give you advice. She will be happy to direct your enquiry to one of these pros. Besides mentors with general knowledge, some have very specific and detailed areas of expertise. Just contact Edith Camm to get started!

    mentor@hardypalm.com

    There are several very experienced members on the Island that could help you
     
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  19. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    I was a member of the PNP&EPS when I lived on the mainland and for a couple of years once here on Van. Isle.
    I know many of those members. I'm sure there's many new faces as well.
    Cheers.
     
  20. Ellen 2002

    Ellen 2002 Member

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    Thank you so much LPN! Appreciate the contact information!
     
  21. Ellen 2002

    Ellen 2002 Member

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    Thank you PMurphy! Appreciated the info!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 12, 2020
  22. P.Dover

    P.Dover New Member

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    How about Comox? Most maps say it is 9A but I would imagine a completely different end of the 9A spectrum to southern parts of the island? How different are winters up there in comparison to.the south? I am hoping to move out there and want to.grow a palm tree.
     
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  23. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    9a? No.
    Best estimation is 8a- 8b depending on the particular year. Trachycarpus fortunei are not problem here in the Comox / Courtenay region.
    Cheers.
     
  24. P.Dover

    P.Dover New Member

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  25. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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