Adonidia palm overwintering

johnwcm(7)August 12, 2013

Would I be able to somehow overwinter a Christmas palm in the greater nyc area? If I can not, which is most likely the caseãÂÂwould setting the thermostat at 64 F at night and 72 F during the day with a humidifier running during the day be sufficient to make it survive? It is 4 foot 6 right now.

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You can overwinter anything if you give it the right conditions, but overwintering a tropical palm like that would be really difficult in NYC. I bring my Christmas palm inside and it doesnt have any problems (other than adjusting to the strong sun again when it goes out in the spring). They are a lot easier to keep inside than to protect outside in our climate. 64F at night and 72F during the day would be great. The important thing is to keep them from drying out indoors and watch out for spider mites.
Good luck!

    Bookmark   August 13, 2013 at 3:08AM
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Dave in NoVA • 7a • Northern VA

I think they can overwinter well indoors with enough light.

There is a shopping mall nearby that has two floors of windows and a clump of adonidia is doing well there, but, that's a lot of light. It also stays there year-round and has adapted to the dryer air.

In a home, unless you have very large windows with lots of sun, I think it will suffer a slow death.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2013 at 8:28AM
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They have not been the easiest palms in my experience--yes, I see tem here in the malls to and can't figure it out. Still, I have kept one alive for aybe two years. Don't let it get too dry over Winter. In general though, not an easy palm--I can keep coconuts alive with fewer problems! Inside, I don't think the biggest issue is sun. Think it's low Winter humidity or a missed watering, for me.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2013 at 3:01PM
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I live in the Atlanta area and have had an adonidia palm for over ten years (right now I have three, the oldest of which I bought in 2003 when it was likely 2-3 years old at least).

These palms are challenging to grow outside the tropics. They like the sun but too much sun can burn the leaves (partial sun is their native Philippines they compete with other species), especially if the plant was grown in a greenhouse. Adonidias do NOT tolerate frost..32F is enough to kill them. The one that I've had for 10 years was originally a four-trunked specimen. The first head died from not enough water (another issue). The second head died because the bigger two outcompeted it. The third head died in 2009 when I left it outside in 32-degree weather. The fourth head barely survived (losing all but one leaf). I used miracle grow to save it as it didn't grow a new leaf for an entire year. Eventually, it recovered and thrived again. But now that I've moved, the new place has too much sun in the summer and is too dry in the winter. Adonidias love high humidity, not dryness. Dryness allows mites to get out of control and then the little buggers can eat the palm alive. In fact, my first adonidia in 2002 died from a red spider mite infestation.

So, to review the risks:
--won't tolerate freezing temps
--can get sunburn
--spider mites can kill them
--doesn't tolerate dry conditions
--needs a lot of water

Still, the point is, you CAN keep them alive indoors. Actually, they can live with artificial light...get a "daylight" compact fluorescent lamp and the palm should do OK during the winter. Just remember the water. And it's not enough to water the base; mist the leaves with a spray bottle (mostly water, but you may want to add mild insect-repelling substances).

    Bookmark   December 24, 2013 at 1:25AM
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