Palm Trees

Caring for Palms in Heated Indoor Garage


Anonymous added on November 9, 2016 | Answered

We live outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania about 30 minutes in Irwin, Pa. My husband purchased bottle palms and Mexican fan palms for me this summer. We have them potted in large pots. We brought them into our garage and put a wall gas heater in the garage. We have long lights throughout the garage, windows that let light in. The winters in Pa. are 95% gray almost no sun, definitely not bright sun. The palms have been inside the garage for about one month now. Seem to be doing ok. I gave each 1/2 of a watering can only once since they were brought in. I try to leave all lights on in the garage in the day and periodically at night. One bottle palm out of 6 has a brown frond and another has a yellow frond with brown tips on it. I cut one frond that was brown off a Mexican palm. Do I leave the brown fronds as they appear? How much and how often should I water them, what temperature should the garage be all winter for optimal care, should I wrap the trunks with blankets, pour any chemical mixtures into the palms for winter? Use any fertilizer during the winter, buy portable lighting to shine on them? How should I examine for any notes or other issues? As you can read, I am dedicated to keeping my palm trees alive over the winter here in Pa. Please help me with specific instructions. I did bring one Mexican fan inside my home which is sitting in the kitchen breakfast area on travertine marble floor. Thank you very much! I am anxiously waiting for your reply. Note: we have gas some 30 degree nights but has been in 60's and 70's overall. So we haven't turned the heater on yet.


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ANSWERS
Downtoearthdigs
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on November 9, 2016

Frost will kill the Bottle Palm. You should move this plant indoors for it to survive and grow.

The Mexican Fan Palm can survive temperatures down to 18 degrees, but only when it is of a mature size--this would be at least 30 ft.
The small size of the plant will leave it vulnerable to cold.
You could likely continue to have it in a heated location but it will need additional light from a grow light for this Palm to survive the winter.

Your Palms will likely need less water indoors and during the winter months.
Do not fertilize in the winter. Slow release fertilizer applied in the spring.

Here are some links for you.

https://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/galveston/educ_programs/Cold-Hardy-Palms.pdf
https://ag.arizona.edu/pima/gardening/aridplants/Washingtonia_robusta.html

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