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Old 06-11-2012, 11:15 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Need Advise on Palms

On January 13 I have sown 4 Chusan Palms, 4 Louisiana Palmettos and 4 Mazari Palms. About 3
months later two of the Chusans sprouted within 24 to 30 hours of each other. One continued
to grow, albeit very slowly, the other one stopped after reaching just short of 1 inch in height for
about five or six weeks – until a couple of days ago.

There is no sign of life in any of the other seeds. Should I give up? I think, I read somewhere, that
palms take anywhere from two weeks to two years to germinate. How true is that?





The Chusans; you can see just a bit of green showing above the brown on the left one, as
the new leaf tries to break out



When I saw a bunch of plants 'safely' labelled “Palm” for a $1.99, I figured, even though they are
only six inches high, at the rate my seeded palms are growing these little things should put me
about 5 years ahead.

Now I have no idea, what kind of “palms” my new purchases are, and this is, where I need some help
with the ID, so I can google about their hardiness and growing habits.





This is the newly planted bunch…





…and here in the centre of this pic. is a single leaf, the structure of which may be more helpful
in the identification.


Any advice on the germination/growing habits of palm seedlings above and the ID of the bunch of
little guys below, would be most welcome.

Thanks,
Olaf


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Old 06-12-2012, 05:59 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Advise on Palms

I would not give up its not even summer yet..
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Old 06-12-2012, 02:55 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Advise on Palms

I belive thats Chamaedorea elegans down there and yes palm seeds may take years to germinate, dont give up on them.
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Old 06-12-2012, 04:47 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Advise on Palms

olaf:

Your Chusan is a Trachycarpus Fortumei and will grow to about 10 mts
The Marzi is a Nannorrhops Ritchiana and is a very low growing (short) palm.
Both of these are very cold tolerant.

Don't have a good idea on the clump, but I would certainly separate them into more pots. They will compete for food. If they are a clumping type you will get the advantage of more palms
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Old 06-12-2012, 07:11 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Advise on Palms

I'm an old time palm guy, 35 years+. After finding sprouted palms seeds in the compost pile that I had given up on after three or four months, I made it a rule not to give up on palm seeds for at least a year. I may have posted this info before.

It would be helpful to use scientific names rather than common names in posts like this. That way, I can look up the species in my palm references or ask my palm society friends. Except for palms, my plant knowledge is pretty general, so I don't want to sound like a snob asking for scientific names, but they're precise and and sometimes that's what's called for.

I'm at work now, or I'd poke around a little to find out what species you're wondering about. Main advice, though, don't give up too soon. Some palms are notoriously slow germinators, a year or more.

Good luck—and keep records.
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Old 06-12-2012, 07:42 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Advise on Palms

I have some old palm seeds (about 16 months old, now). They were identified as "Christmas Palm," when I collected them, last year. They are red but, now, sems oh have the seed, inside, rattling around. Is it worth planting them, and should I take the red shell off before planting?
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Old 06-12-2012, 11:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Advise on Palms

I've had Jubaea chilensis (Chilean Wine Palm) and Rapidophyllum hystrix (Needle Palm) take up to four years to germinate. Usually seeds will either germinate within a few months or they will go into "deep dormancy" and that can add another year or more. You can't compare one species to another because generally they need different temperatures to germinate. The Trachycarpus (Chusan) is a palm from high altitudes so they tend to germinate at cooler temperatures. Your Sabal 'Louisiana' won't germinate until it has had a good month or so above 80F. The Mazari Palm (Nannorhops ritchianna) is a desert palm. They tend to need heat and some moisture but can rot easily as well. You can check our rarepalmseeds.com and they have lots of germination information posted for most species.
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Old 06-13-2012, 02:26 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Need Advise on Palms

Adonidia merrillii is the scientific name. Normally seeds that old have dried out. Fresh seeds are soaked for 48 hours to get the outer skin off and then soaked again for another 24 hours. Normally would take on average about 30-60 days to germinate
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Old 06-13-2012, 01:10 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Need Advise on Palms

I want to thank everybody for all the helpful advice I have received on this call for help. I feel
like a heel for only answering this late, but one of our visitors backed into the frame of our garage
door and I had picked yesterday to fix the damage. Jobs like this rarely go as smoothly as
anticipated and there was some urgency to put “Humpty Dumpty back together again”.

I will here attempt to reply to all post in the order received:

Migael, you are right, “it is not even summer yet” and in light of what Rob wrote later, I may
not have quite the temperature required for germination for long enough.

No, Ante, I was not really prepared to give up yet this was more of a challenge to get some
sense of germination time for palm trees.

Thank you, Charlie, the seed house, from which I received those seeds gave a fair
description or the seeds, they sent me, but did not divulge the scientific name. I agree, that the
SN is much more concise, than the various popular names given to a plant. I like the idea of growing
things in “clumps”. I do so with bananas as well, but you are right, in this case that is carried a bit
too far. I will certainly reduce their numbers by dividing, though they are not in pots right now, but
in my Tropical Planter, in which they share lots of room with lots of other plants. See:
My brand new "tropical" planter
(For those who are interested, I will post more about the progress there in the next few days)

No, Ken, I think by no means, that using scientific names is snobbish. For anyone, who
cares about gardening more than just ‘sticking-things-in-the-ground-and letting-them-grow’ they are
essential.

Sorry, John I am not qualified to answer that one, but I am sure somebody else will

Thank you Rob, you gave me some concise indicators of the conditions required for
germination of my palm seeds. I am reasonably happy to have the two Chusans (ahem
Trachycarpus) for now. There are four more seeds in the ground, two which I had sown at the same
time as the germinated ones and two, which I have sown about 70 days later. For the other two
species the timing is about right. As soon as our traditional June rains have stopped, toward the end
of the month the day time temperatures will rise to as much as a hundred degrees and sometimes
more. To keep the seeds warm during the night, I will place the small “germination pots” into
an earth filled black bigger one, which can absorb the sunshine and retain the warmth during the
night. I will, based on your information, keep the Sabal lightly covered, to keep the moisture in and
keep the Nannorhops Ritchianna moist but uncovered to resemble desert conditions more closely.

Thank you again, everybody,
Olaf



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Last edited by Olafhenny : 06-13-2012 at 01:18 PM.
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Old 06-16-2012, 06:43 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Need Advise on Palms

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dalmatiansoap View Post
I belive thats Chamaedorea elegans down there and yes palm seeds may take years to germinate, dont give up on them.
Thank you, Ante, when I saw your post I was concentrating on the "...years to germinate"
part and missed your ID completely. Yes, meanwhile I have confirmed that it is indeed a
Chamaedorea elegans.

Thanks,
Olaf


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