Should You Trim the Lower Leaves on a Pygmy Palm Tree?

Indoors or outside, the pygmy date palm (Phoenix roebelenii) adds a bold, tropical look. This heat-loving, tropical palm only grows 8 to 12 feet tall, making it an superb choice for containers. At the backyard, pygmy date palms grow best in U.S. Department of Agriculture Shrub Removal hardiness zones 9 through 11, though it may need winter protection in regions which get occasional frosts. The trees need little pruning except to remove dead, damaged or diseased fronds, or to trim the palm’s long, dangerous thorns.

The Unkindest Cuts of All

Palm trees utilize old fronds which are even slightly green as a supply of food. Reducing fronds the Stump Removal still requires can retard development and depart the pygmy palm vulnerable to insects and diseases. Before choosing your lawn for example in Salt Lake City shears, a close assessment of this target fronds helps determine which fronds can be removed without harming the tree Long Beach. The palm tree finally drops old foliage once it stops being useful, saving you the trouble of pruning. Some fronds may be loose enough to only pull off. Prune only those fronds suffering from infection, too damaged by weather or infestation to survive, or entirely dead and dry.

Dress for Success

Wicked spikes, which can easily pierce your skin and penetrate protective wear which isn’t heavy enough, either protrude for many inches round the petioles, or the part of the frond that attaches to the main stem. Heavy work gloves, eye protection and thick, protective clothes can decrease the risk in the thorns. Injuries in the thorns can lead to diseases or need medical attention, so it pays to be mindful.

Choose Your Weapon

High-quality pruning shears or loppers with sharp blades generally make the top tools for pruning away palm fronds. Pruning shears work best when the frond’s stem is significantly less than 3/4 inch thick. Loppers work much better on stems up to 1 1/2 inches thick. Whether or not the palm suffers from infection, it’s a fantastic idea to disinfect pruning tools before using them, to prevent accidentally spreading diseases. Soak the blades for around five minutes in full-strength household disinfectant, or a mixture of 70 percent isopropyl alcohol blended with equivalent quantities of water. Allow the instrument to air dry thoroughly before applying.

Ready, Set, Cut

If you want, work with smaller, scissorlike pruning clippers to lop off the pygmy date palm’s thorns initially, making the remainder of the pruning chore easier. Disinfect these the exact same manner as the shears or loppers. Once the coast is clear, insert the blades of the shears or the loppers so they are positioned on both sides of the frond’s petiole, or stem. Do not cut so close to the tree’s most important stem that the blades piece into the main stem. Do not force the blades closer to the main stem than they could easily go — which can cause the shears to cut too close. Attempt to make clean cuts to the very first try to prevent shredding the stems. Remove pruned or dropped fronds from all over the base of the tree to reduce the prospect of infection, insect or rodent problems.