Planting palm trees on your beachside property is an exciting way to add tropical flair. However, a palm tree is a significant responsibility and requires general maintenance for long life. In addition, you can choose from many varieties of palms to suit every lifestyle.
If you’re not sure where to begin, the tree service provided by Island Tree Services can give you a head start. In the meantime, here are a few helpful ways to care for palm trees.
Plant in Ample Space
It is best to dig a large enough hole to encompass the palm tree’s growth. The hole should be approximately twice the diameter of the root ball. Then, plant the ball with moist watering, but not soaking wet.
Planting during dry seasons is favorable, as it will ensure consistency throughout the initial water schedule. Dry planting seasons also provide sandy soils that will not risk the clumping that wet seasons bring. Some varieties of palms prefer dry seasons year-round, though most prefer a humid climate.
After your palm tree has ample room in the ground, you will need to brace it. Bracing a palm tree sets it in place to establish a consistent growth pattern and protect it from high winds. Proper care for palm trees requires a new or young palm to grow in its brace for at least six months.
When bracing a palm tree, surround the tree with burlap to cushion the bark and securely nestle it into the brace. Anchor the brace to the ground using 2×4 wooden planks and metal stakes. Ensure that the mount is not too tight, and never nail the brace into the tree.
Palm fertilizer is crucial to growing a long-lasting palm or rejuvenating a mature tree. Fertilize the tree slightly above the root system after planting and bracing. Follow up seasonally, or four times a year, for the first year.
Overwatering any tree exposes it to the risk of a fungal infection, but this fact holds especially true for palm trees. Due to their dry nature, palm trees require less water than inland trees. However, that does not mean you should neglect all watering.
New palms require water every day for the first week, every other day the second week, and three times a day the following week. For established palm trees, water three times a week in the absence of rainfall. A great way to care for palm trees is to set a consistent watering schedule.
Remove Fronds All at Once
The removal of fronds primarily depends on the variety of palms, but a palm should never endure total removal. Excessive removal will expose the tree to potential infection through mold, mildew, or bacteria. Remove fronds that are dead or broken, but never for cosmetic reasons as that will senselessly strip the palm of essential protection.
Leave in Cold Weather
Container palms, like fan palms, are susceptible to cold temperatures. Placing indoor palm trees outside during warmer seasons is excellent for the health of the palm, so long as you transfer it back inside when the season changes. Young palm trees cannot withstand temperatures lower than 45 degrees.
If you cannot move the palm tree indoors, wrap the trunk with a blanket to retain heat. Established palm trees will endure colder temperatures and even a light frost. Mulch is another good insulator that will additionally let the palm tree breathe.
With sufficient knowledge, anyone can care for palm trees. To learn more on plant health care, reach out to Island Tree Service of Fort Myers, FL. Call today at (239)-463-5121 for a free estimate on any tree or landscaping service!