Dead Palms in Austin

elchechexJuly 31, 2011

What are everyone's thoughts about the palm trees in Austin. I have a few very tall Mexican Fan Palms that have not come out yet (Winter Damage). Do you think they are dead? I climbed up to the top and its not mushy or rotten at the tip. In the past have seen Date Palms that have been topped and re-sprouted like a banana tree. Would that work on a Mexican Fan Palm??

Should I just keep waiting or have we passed the point of any hope.


Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
wantonamara Z8 CenTex

With this drought all bets are off. I am outside, west of Austin.They might be dormant also because of the water situation. I really do not know. It is above my head. Everything is getting the good old double whammy. All the live oaks on Hamilton Pool road are starting to loose their leaves.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2011 at 10:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

You can tell if the palm tree is dead when the base of the tree starts to get mushy, and soft. If it is still hard then it is probably still alive.

This is the time of the year oak trees loose their leaves, its natural, don't worry.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2011 at 12:13AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have to respectfully disagree. :(

More than 90% of Washingtonia robusta (Mexican Fan Palms) died in Dallas over this winter. I know it was much colder and for much longer time here, but there are clear survivors that have half full crowns and the dead ones show no sign of green.

The Washingtonia filifera (California Fan Palms) seemed to have all survived here in Dallas proper despite total defoliation.

As a last hope, I would try putting a hose on each of them just trickling for a couple hours. With all this heat, if you don't see growth in the next two weeks, they are goners.

W. filifera is pretty much foolproof in Austin but harder to find. Many marked filifera are hybrids.

Phoenix canariensis (Canary Island Date Palms) survived here in Dallas and I am really surprised. They should be fine in Austin.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2011 at 6:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I lost 4 cuban royals, 2 alexander palms, 2 bottle palms, 1 Carboard palm, 3 pigmy date palms, and 4 foxtail palms in the freezes, I am in Rockport Texas. The trunks turned soft after about 6 months. I still have 20 queen and king plams trees, and 3 pigmy date palms that did not freeze. I was quoted $1500 to dig up each dead palm tree. It takes me a week to dig around the tree, and then my husband uses his 2500 truck, with 20 bags of 40 lb dirt on the back, to pull them up slowly after a good soaking. Its like pulling a tooth, the roots are at least 5 ft long. Each root is about 300 lbs in weight, we put a hoist in the tree and pull it up into the truck to haul off.. I took a picture of the first root I dug up, I still have 3 to go.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2011 at 11:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I do not know about fan palm trees, since I did not have any. I would check with Bob Webster on Sunday, just call his radio show. I always call when I have a question, he is on channel 55 AM. The show is 8am to 11am, you will love it. I remember him saying if you can pull the middle where the leaves come together out, then you would need to replace the palm tree. Mine were too tall so I could not try this. I waited until the trunks started to cave in. Barbra

    Bookmark   August 1, 2011 at 11:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It's a mystery. I live in Kyle. I had 6 Phoenix canariensis (Canary Island Date Palms). Three survived, three are in Lala Land (no leaves but hard trunk). I'm expecting the worse for those semi-dead, though.


    Bookmark   August 2, 2011 at 12:57AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
wantonamara Z8 CenTex

Honey bunny, what did you do with the roots: I bet that wood is interesting.

    Bookmark   August 2, 2011 at 9:23PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The roots were very heavy, we had to let them dry out for a week, before we could even move them. My husband would hoist the root with a pully that was in a hugh oak tree, the root would fall in the bed of his truck. Then we would haul it to the dump, where it was turned into mulch. The cuban royals were about 20ft tall, we planted them in 1995 when we bought the first 3 lots. The others were about 12ft we planted them in 2003 when we bought the property next door. Barbra

    Bookmark   August 3, 2011 at 2:00AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ive been checking my palms and have kept watering the ones that might be dead(just in case) I have climbed up to the top and the top center, where the frawn come out is still very tight and ridged. The base of the tree is very tight and firm (not mushy). At this point I do think they are dead. I going to wait until November to take them out.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2011 at 10:05AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
greenleaf_organic(8, TX)

I love the Canary Island Date palm, but settled for a couple of Pindo Palms which are nice too and much more cold hardy.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2011 at 10:27PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
scotty66(8 Hutto TX)

my mother, in Round Rock, had a sago palm (Cycas revoluta) in a large planter in her front garden. it appeared to have been killed in last winters freeze, in the spring the center was rotten and soft. She never had time to replace it, and she never watered it (and it certainly hasn't rained recently).
Anyways, two leaves have just emerged from the base of the plant.
Researching online, I have seen several stories about the plants being tossed out or set aside, only to come back to life.
Amazing plants.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2011 at 12:18AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Took out two of my palms that had not leafed out yet. Once I had them out of the ground, I took a machete to the base. I chopped out an V groove and sure enough it was nice and green and full of sap/ water(firm, not mushy). I don't think these palms we dead. I think its just going to take a year for some of them to come back.???

    Bookmark   August 20, 2011 at 8:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Did anyone lose any this winter? I lost one last winter but all of them and the new one have made it so far this year.

I also have one of my original plms that is growing much faster than the other 4. Like it is already 1-1.5ft taller after 4 years. They were all the same size when they were planted. Any ideas?

Here is a link that might be useful: austin palm trees

    Bookmark   March 1, 2013 at 12:05PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Has anyone checked out the best place to get flagstone ....
Has anybody checked out the best place to get flagstones...
roselee z8b S.W. Texas
WANTED: San Antonio Plant Swap
Mark your calendars: Sat., April 18, 9 am, Rogiers...
Do you use sprinkler, sprinkler system or soaker hoses?
I used to have a sprinkler system around my foundation...
Seed Starting / Mini Greenhouses
I have been saving the clear plastic containers that...
Gretchen Wood
This is really different.
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™