When is a palm tree in trouble?

Frequently Asked Questions

When there are many frons turning brown, if you’ve got 5 or 6 branches, depending on the tree, could be cause for concern.

Another note is even for a palm that has been in the ground for years, if there is trouble with the center growth, the center fron up top in the middle, if that isn’t growing, there is usually a problem internally.

The oldest frons are the ones on the bottom, the lower branches of the palm tree. The newest growth are the center branches, and the very newest of them all is the center stalk shoot. If that starts to brown or wither, there is a problem. Sometimes can
be saved, sometimes not.

Not every palm and every situation is the same, but if the center stalk is browning, or wilting significantly, YES, there’s a problem.

Attached here are some photos showing normal browning, and a situation with a palm tree where the center stalk was weakened & not only browning but actually was not strong enough to stand up straight and fell over. Significant wilting in this palm tree example to the left. THIS PHOTO SHOWS A PALM WHERE IT IS DEFINITELY IN TROUBLE. THIS PALM DID NOT MAKE IT.

Both of these photos show normal browning of the palm fron leaves after installation. The lowest frons, which are the oldest, are the ones that will naturally die off first, all the time as the palm lives. During installation, these oldest frons will feel the stress first and the palm will shed these first, naturally as well. That is how a palm helps to allocate its nutrients naturally as it grows, focuses on supply to new growth and sheds the older growth.

After installation, this process is quickened, and older frons will brown usually within a week to a couple of weeks after being installed as the palm adjusts to its new home and the roots then need to become established.

If you see this happening to a Bismarkia palm we planted, please let us know. Our response is a need to check the irrigation and provide a nutrition boost.

This Bismarkia palm is going through more than usual shock and what is interesting to note is that they do not show shock as the great majority of other palm trees. Where it is normal for the older growth to brown off, the lower frons of a palm tree, the newer growth on a Bismarkia shows first. A weird thing about nature, but that’s the way this palm is.

If your Bismarkia looks anything like this, please notify us immediately by email and photos.

NOTE : Example of normal Bismarkia palm fron browning after installation.

Photo shows normal browning after an installation. The fron(s) that turn brown, will eventually turn brown completely and lilt down. That is the natural way the palm fron will die off. This is just after installation. The center stalk is strong and has its color, its just the outer, oldest, lowest fron that is feeling the stress of the new installation. This is normal.
The first photo of the Bismarkia with the center stalk wilting, that is not good and needs immediate attention.

If you are a customer of ours, we hope you find this article helpful, if you are not a customer of ours – we hope you’ll keep us in mind for your next project or makeover.

All our best,
Universal Landscape, Inc.

If you’re ready to talk about the project that’s been on your mind, or you just want to spruce up the yard – give us a call today – we’ll work hard to make you feel glad you did!

(561) 448 0595