How fast does a needle palm grow?

Hunter_M(Kentucky Z.6)June 20, 2011

I just got a little needle palm sproutlet today. (Its so cute!) And I was wondering how fast it grows. I know its slow but like how much does it grow in a year? I would ask the guy who sold it to me on ebay, but he wont answer my questions. Thanks!

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tropicalzone7(7b)

Needle palms do grow very very slow. I would only expect to get 2 fronds, maybe 3 fronds, a year from a plant that small. It would take at least 5 years, probably closer to 10 years, before it got to a decent clump. Needle palms also are a bit less cold tolerant when young, so if you plan on putting it in the ground, dont expect it to take temperatures like 5F on the first winter.

Good luck!
-Alex

    Bookmark   June 20, 2011 at 6:34PM
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subtropix

in addition to gaining cold tolerance, they also tend to speed up in growth past the juvenile stage.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2011 at 8:18PM
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Hunter_M(Kentucky Z.6)

Is there anything I can do to it to get it more cold hardy without killing it?

    Bookmark   June 20, 2011 at 9:26PM
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subtropix

Time, patience, and Winter protection for a few years.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2011 at 9:32PM
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tropicalzone7(7b)

Unfortuantely nothing much you can do except for what NJ says. Protect it from moisture (I use a plastic garbage bin for my palms) and adding some x-mas lights for heat during the winter will help keep it nice and warm.
If you can find a larger Needle palm (they have some nice sizes on Ebay that are a good price, but still a little expensive). They might be worth trying. You should still protect it until you know for sure what your individual needle palm can take because every individual palm is a little different.
-Alex

    Bookmark   June 20, 2011 at 10:12PM
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Hunter_M(Kentucky Z.6)

Well, I ran out of money buying this one. :( I wouldnt plant it here in Ohio but In about a year if I go to Virginia next year which is zone 7. If I put a garbage bin on it and Christmas lights on it could it, in a year, survive winter in Virginia?

    Bookmark   June 20, 2011 at 10:51PM
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tropicalzone7(7b)

If you do think there is a good chance that your moving next year, I would keep it in a pot for the summer and bring it inside during the winter (if you have an unheated garage, that would be a good spot to put a potted needle palm in the winter months since it would see cold temperatures, but probably not temperatures significantly below freezing. My garage is unheated and rarely gets below 40F even during the worst of winter weather).

At least you have a year to save up for a larger needle palm. If you move to VA, it would be much happier there anyways.

Palms hate being dug up so I wouldnt plant anything in the ground unless I knew it would definitely be there for a number of years.
-Alex

    Bookmark   June 21, 2011 at 12:42AM
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