Sick palm trees? Any advice?

txgardennewbieMay 11, 2010

Greetings all!

I just purchased a house and inherited 3 nice 20'+ tall palm trees that I want to keep. I live in Southern CA (specifically Orange County -- Western Garden zone 23).

Anyone care to take a guess at: 1) what type of palms these are, 2) what appears to be wrong with them based on its yellow/saggy fronds?

At first glance I might assume they look over watered, but they're nowhere near standing water or irrigation. I have no clue at this point!

Any advice is greatly appreciated.


Here is a link that might be useful: Photos

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They are queen palms and probably need fertilizer. I would give them epsom salt first and then some fertilizer a week or 2 afterward. Queen palms usually dont look very good when left uncared but with fertilizer it should keep the fronds greener. Just remember that the fronds that are already yellow will not get greener. Only the new fronds will be greener.

good luck!

    Bookmark   May 11, 2010 at 11:08PM
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Thanks Alex. So I tried to do a little research on what's the proper amount of epsom salt to add per gallon of water. I saw anything from 1 teaspoon to 1 cup. What's your advice on application rates?

Thx, Richard

    Bookmark   May 13, 2010 at 12:07AM
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When I added epsom salt to mine I didnt measure but I was not a huge amount. Probably around 3 or 4 teaspoons. This is my first year using epsom salt so Im not sure if thats enough but the less the better for now because you can always add more in another month or 2 after seeing if there are any improvements. But I think 1 cup is too much for just a gallon, but I could be wrong.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   May 13, 2010 at 12:24AM
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thats the typical look on a queen palm here in so cal if not taking care of properly but than again most people, not all mainly water them every so often. it might need a good soaking since there was no irrigation & if the ground looks really dry but i agree with TZ7 with the epsom salt and a slow release fertilizer. regular water & fert. should turn this palm around in no time, there are thousands of queen palms all around especially by where you live & if taking care of they look really beautiful! goodluck

    Bookmark   May 13, 2010 at 3:08PM
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my coconut palm trees are dischargin sap tha's stiking to the floor, its clear and the flowers and little coconuts are dry, it's very dry in florida,
please let me know what can I do.Are they sick?
Thank you

    Bookmark   June 13, 2011 at 4:38PM
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Im going to say that its probably aphids. Aphids can kill plants because they make a sap (which ants love) that will keep the leaves from getting sunlight (not to mention that they are sucking the life out of the plants!). Neem oil seems to help, but I would try to find a professional to spray it because it sounds like a pretty large palm.
Good luck!

    Bookmark   June 13, 2011 at 6:05PM
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I can't see the Queens very closely in your photos, but what I can see of them they look OK. IF only the bottom fronds are yellowy, they may just be old fronds. Hard to really overwater a queen palm in California, even if planted in mud, but I guess it's possible.. most queen palms in So Cal do not get enough water, but too much is rarely a problem. the biggest, thickest and healthiest are those growing in well watered lawns.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2011 at 8:25PM
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