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To Trim Or Not To Trim, That Is The Question

As we look around at the devastation left behind Hurricane Ian, it’s hard not to notice what survived and what didn’t.  For the most part, native trees – especially most varieties of palm trees remained standing. Some fared better than others. Many Christmas Palms look fresh as daisies while Foxtails and Bismarcks have some serious palm droops.  While it is tempting to whack those limp palms, hold on a bit. If the leaves are green, leave them be! 

Palm Trees Have A Heart

The palm tree heart, officially called the apical meristem pops out of the top of the trunk and produces the leaves that cascade around it. Those are the beautiful green fronds you see.  Just like a human, the palm needs a healthy heart to survive.  As long as the heart is not damaged, your palm has the best chance for survival if it can draw important nutrients from the fronds that are damaged, but not removed. It may take six months or even longer to determine if the palm will recover from wind whip. 

Broken Palm Trees

Not all palms survived and there are steps to follow if one is broken. If a single-stemmed palm breaks, it will not survive. Clustering palms with multiple stems may survive and recover with time. Cut broken palms as close to the soil line as possible. Single-stem palm stumps should be removed and ground up if possible to avoid a contagious shelf-like mushroom called Ganoderma zonatum conk.  This fungus can kill other palms if it spreads. 

Uprooted Palms Trees

Stand up any palms that have fallen over, but didn’t break.  Replant them at the same depth and brace them for at least six months. You should treat these palms just like they were brand new growth. Water them appropriately for the best chance of survival. 

Need help trimming palm trees?

Our Tempco Techs are experts in palm tree treatment and care. If you had any tree damage or replanted tree our techs can determine if fertilization or fungicide treatments are recommended.

Michael Ryan

President Michael Ryan is the founder and co-owner of Tempco Pest Control, Inc. His primary responsibilities include financial oversight, strategic planning and operations. Michael earned a B.S. in marketing with a minor in political science from Florida Southern College in 1990. He has a banking and entrepreneurial background as well as over 20 years of pest control experience. Michael holds Florida Certified Operators Licenses in Pest Control, Rodent Control, Lawn Care and Termite Control and earned the designation of Associate Certified Entomologist. He is also a member of the Entomological Society of America as well as the Certified Pest Control Operators Association. A Florida resident since 1990, Michael’s interests include fishing, boating, ornamental horticulture and his 225-gallon salt water aquarium.