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Palm Tree help

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by SouthernYankee, Sep 7, 2005.

  1. SouthernYankee

    SouthernYankee LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 789

    I am new to palm trees and I know nothing about them.

    I just signed a new client on that owns a manision and has palms all around her pool in the backyard. I was wondering if I can just cut off the dead palms that are completely brown and dead right off the tree with a pole saw?

    I am pretty sure that they are windmill palms. Any tips, advice about palms would be appreicated. thanks

    UNISCAPER LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,426

    The branches you are describing are called "'Fronds". Palms are a stringy composition and the easiest I have found is a fine toothed saw, similar to what you cut PVC pipe for irrigation with. Just go to the base of the frond, along the trunk, and cut it as close to the trunk as you can. It is OK to cut the lower fronds that are horizontal, because new ones will grow from the center of the tree. If they are brown, they should have been cut months ago. Cutting should be done two times a year, at least in our area. Be careful! There are some wicked thornes on Palm fronds, thornes that make roses seem like a toothpick. Wear gloves, and preferably a long sleeved shirt or just use care and you will be fine.
  3. thill

    thill LawnSite Member
    Messages: 245

    The fronds that turn yellow or brown and then droop are actually a source of nutirints for the plant (not really a tree - closely related to the orchid family).
    They will drop when the plant is done with them.

    Trimming is for folks that don't like the visual, and that is most of our clients. So we present our case and then do what they ask.

    Uniscape is right on about using a fine tooth saw and about the thorns.

  4. palm boy

    palm boy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 58

    Well said- It is best to definately not cut any green branches and trim the dead or yellowing ones periodically. Over trimming is a common mistake. Many people think they will save themselves some time down the road by butchering their palm. When you take to many green branches off you are weakening the tree by robbing it of its food source.

    UNISCAPER LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,426

    You guys are great. Being 4 years new to the environment of Palms (am from Illinois originally) I learned from the natives here. I just though trimming is what you did to make the tree look pretty. Thanks for sharing!

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