My Torbay Palm appears to be dying?

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by rhino666, Jun 28, 2020.

  1. rhino666

    rhino666 Apprentice Gardener

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    Hi

    I have a feature Torbay palm also know as Cabbage Palm or more accurately Cordyline Australis.
    Unfortunately this one has lost most of its leaves recently to the point that various of the boughs have none whatsoever now and no new growth - please see pic. No apparent infestation but it had been dry for a long period of time down here in South Devon. Other similar, although not as big palms seem fine. I have chopped off the fruiting heads to try and save the tree energy but perhaps too little, too late.
    Its a lovely tree and a feature in the garden. Probably 25 years old and 12 feet tall.
    Can someone put me out of my misery - is there any chance that it will recover or is death imminent?

    Thanks

    Rob

    IMG_7383.JPG
     
  2. pete

    pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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    Strangely brightly coloured.
    I had a couple of old large ones die on me about 10years ago.

    Never found out the true cause but they died over a matter of 3years or so.
    Only realised afterwards that the rosettes of leaves at the top were putting out aerial roots, presumably in an attempt to survive as the problem was at the base of the stem.
    In short they died upwards.

    They have regrown from the root but yet to reach the same size as before.
    Another one I have was totally unaffected.
     
  3. rhino666

    rhino666 Apprentice Gardener

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    Hi Pete

    Unfortunately the bright colour is the yellowing of dying leaves.
    There are still a few green ones but it does sound like the Palm, although it isn't a true palm, is on its way out. Perhaps the shock of the recent dry spell was too much for it when combined with the extra energy required to produce 15 or so large flowering heads.
    Will wait until it produces shoots at the base and chop the trunk off when it starts to go soft.
    This has just tweaked my distant memory of a similar tree i had growing in my Coventry Garden. That just died for no apparent reason but I found a side shoot at the base and planted it. Over some years the new tree grew far bigger and stronger than its parent.
    Strange that these do not seem to have a maturity phase - perhaps they just check out in their prime.
     
  4. pete

    pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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    Yes it is strange how they just seem to suddenly give up.
    But when mine died back there seemed to be reports of it happening quite widely at that time.
    But it wasn't weather related I don't think.
     
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