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Fan Palm Trees

Q.Texas Freeze 2021 – Is My Mexican Fan Palm Dead?

Zone 78681 | Palm and Yuccas added on March 26, 2021 | Answered

We planted a Mexican fan palm about 2 years ago in our front yard (and built a patio around it). It’s been thriving since we planted it and the trunk alone now stands about 9 feet tall. We had that crazy freeze in February this year (5 degrees one night 4 degrees the next) after layers and layers of ice built up on all of our plants. After the freeze, the yuccas are happy, but the palms all appear dead. My biggest concern is this patio centerpiece, our Mexican Fan Palm. See pictures… A couple weeks after the freeze I learned that it was important to treat the tree with copper fungicide. I did this 2 times separated by about 2 weeks between treatments. Only at the top with a sprayer. The other day I trimmed all the fronds, pulled out the center fronds (so that center could dry and not grow bacteria / mold, etc) then covered the top loosely with a tupperware container to keep rain water from irrigating the plant from the top. If you knock on the tree, it sounds more hollow than it used to, and I have noticed the base of the trunk appears wetter than the rest. My impression is that the core of the tree has failed and now the water is resting and slowly seeping through the bottom of the trunk instead of being drawn toward the top (just an impression). I attached a picture where you can see this effect, but in this picture it had just rained, and so the effect is exaggerated. I took a picture looking straight down the top of the palm at the “bud” or whatever it’s called. Can anyone tell me if that looks alive, or dead? How long should I wait before removing the tree? There is no risk of damage to anything by falling, and the tree currently is very sturdy. Any help is appreciated!

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on March 26, 2021

I'm sorry, but unfortunately, this palm is dead. This one will need to be replaced.

Here is an article that will help you to care for the palm once a new one is planted:


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