Broke down yesterday...

trishmick(z7NJ)January 23, 2011

...and wrapped some Christmas lights around my windmill. Now...I've become perhaps a bit too confident about this guy's hardiness over the years...but, it's only 12 outside now (colder overnight) and projected to be only in the single digits this eve and Mon. morning. I'm starting to wonder if doing this might actually be more damaging than helpful. Waking him from a restful and beneficial sleep so to speak...

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Windmills are hardy to near 0�F. That being said, they're notorious for spear loss while in the 3-gal to 7-gal size. That's when the bud is above ground level and they don't yet have an actual trunk. After that they're fine.

We've been lucky with them in the mid-south. Even snow doesn't seem to damage them. I wish palmettos and pindos were the same.

Maybe someone up your way knows how many consecutive cold days/nights they can take. Here, I don't think we've seen more than 36 hours below 32�.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2011 at 11:26AM
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Trachys usually have major damage below about 6 or 7, with buildings providing some moderation.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2011 at 11:34AM
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My 2 seem to be okay so far, but they are covered in a home made greenhouse so not exposed to the snow, ice, wind and most of the cold. And get natural sun. I don't believe in covering them up at all...did that once and it rotted over the winter, so I have been building around them and just letting them be.

Any questions please feel free to ask,


    Bookmark   January 23, 2011 at 11:47AM
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This tree went in the ground 10 yrs. ago from a 5 gal. pot. It is now roughly 9 ft. tall with about 4 ft. of trunk. I have not covered it or protected it at all the last 2 Winters ( other than what I did yesterday ). However, these temps are the lowest we've seen in awhile. And so...probably the lowest it's ever experienced. As of yesterday, budding spear secure and overall color nice and green. Just feeling like a worried parent...

    Bookmark   January 23, 2011 at 12:27PM
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I hear ya' Trish. I also decided to put some lights and bubble wrap, and light-weight insulating blanket on mine. Then, I might cover the whole thing with a sheet. They are near the south side of the building and the sun actually feels hot here on the inside, so I know the area absorbs a lot of heat in the day. I think our palms will be okay. Worst is tonight, then slightly less brutal. Hang in there!

    Bookmark   January 23, 2011 at 2:24PM
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Im doing the same for one of my unheated windmill palms. 7F is just too cold for the first winter. If it was 13F or 14F like last winter's low than it would not of needed any heat, but now I will have to help it along a little. I think I'm all out of Christmas lights so I will have to think of something else.
Good luck everyone. Tonight might be (hopefully will be) the coldest night of the year.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2011 at 3:02PM
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Good idea if you're expecting single digit lows. I second the idea that damage starts to occur at 7 degrees. I have experimented with them for years here in Michigan, and 6 degrees does cause some damage. And we did end up getting down to 5 degrees last night, so East coast, it's on the way. You guys need to prepare. We've been in the mid to low teens all day too.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2011 at 5:49PM
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Well it turns out I couldnt find any christmas lights so It will go through the 7 degrees without any added heat. However, I piled up snow about halfway up the plastic garbage bin that is over it and hopefully that will keep the palm insulated enough for it to stay above 10F. Its also near the house and in a spot with evergreen trees so the heat from the ground doesnt escape that easily in that area (a frost didnt even come to that part of the yard until it was 28F outside which was the first week of December!)
I hope my palm makes it and I hope everyone's palms are doing good too!

    Bookmark   January 23, 2011 at 6:22PM
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