Palm trees are iconic in Florida. Various species grow in abundance across the state, accentuating Florida’s reputation as a tropical paradise. However, there are several challenges these trees can face. Below, Blue Landscaping and Contracting Group delves into some of the most common problems palm trees face in Florida, and how to resolve them so your palm trees can thrive.
The Most Common Palm Tree Problems
There are several common problems landscapers encounter with palm trees, all of which can vary in severity depending on the tree’s health, environmental difficulties, and the level of progression of its problem.
This disease is fatal to palms, and can spread from tree to tree if it isn’t eliminated quickly. Spread by insects known as leafhoppers, symptoms include premature dropping of the tree’s nuts, blackening of the inflorescence, and the palm’s fronds yellowing and dying from the bottom, up. Thankfully, you can slow the progression of this disease and prevent its spread through antibiotics, if the disease is detected early.
Palm fronds are essential to the tree’s overall health. If you remove them before they are fully brown, you can be stealing precious nutrition and energy from the tree itself. You want to be frugal in removing fronds and avoid pruning more than 15 percent of them. Exceeding that limit can cause the tree to go into shock.
Over-Watering or Mixed Irrigation Zones
Florida is already wet and humid. If you plant your palms in an irrigation area that is above or below its water requirements, you are more than likely going to set the tree up for failure. Pay attention to each species’ unique needs and place and water them appropriately.
Like its namesake, sooty mold appears as an ash-colored or black mold that grows on the palm’s fronds. This mold isn’t detrimental to the tree’s health, but it does look bad. You can eliminate it by eliminating insects that leave behind waste with the excess sugar byproducts this mold thrives upon.
Leafhoppers, whitefly, caterpillars, borers, scales, mites, and aphids are all detrimental to your palm’s health. The trouble is you may not notice them until the infestation is well underway thanks to the height of a palm’s fronds. There are sprays available that can help treat these infestations, particularly for the smaller species such as ornamental palms. However, the taller species will require a systemic insecticide in order to tackle this issue due to its sheer height.
As much as we love Florida’s warm, moist climate, it is the perfect condition for fungus to grow. You can spot a fungus problem through symptoms such as rotting trunks, slow growth, and uncharacteristic wilting. The danger of fungal infections is that they spread extremely quickly. The only way to protect the surrounding trees is by removing the infected one. Also, to prevent fungal infections you should always use sterilized tools when pruning the fronds.
Leave Your Palms in Good Hands: Contact Us for Landscaping Services!
Located in Southwest Florida, Blue Landscaping and Contracting Group and Blue Outdoor Solutions is dedicated to assisting with the installation and maintenance of both residential and commercial landscapes. Let us help you install and care for the palms that make Florida so beautiful. To inquire about our services, simply pick up the phone and call us at 239-566-2583.