Wednesday, February 19, 2014

What's At Stake With My Palms?

We have 5' tall Bismark Palms along our driveway. Heavy winds have caused them to lean to one side. Should we stake them to try to straighten them? Thank you.


Thanks for writing and listening to "In Your Backyard." Great question. Most times, if palms have 6' of trunk they don't need to be staked. Have you tried to correct the leaning? If you have and they keep leaning, I would stake them through the next 8- 9 months. I don't know how far apart you have them. So I've attached two photographs of bracing examples from the Seabreeze Nursery in South Florida. Be careful not to nail into the trunk or damage the trunk's bark.

Photo use and instructions courtesy
 of Seabreeze Nursery, Ft. Myers, Florida

How to brace palms:
  • Use a tripod or quadripod wood support system to brace them.
  • Wrap 3-foot-long 2-by-4-inch planks with multiple layers of burlap or old blanket fabric as padding.
  • Fasten these padded plants vertically around the palm trunk with metal strapping.
  • Nail the strapping into the planks, making sure no nail tips pierce the palms' trunk.
  • Then, place long 2-by-4-inch boards at an angle from the trunk to create a support structure.
  • Nail an end of the long plank to each padded plank piece strapped onto the trunk. 
  • If soil is sandy, wedge the long plank bottoms into the soil to brace the tree.
More photos and information from the University of Florida on staking palms.

I would leave the bracing through the hurricane season (end of November). It should have enough root support by then to stay upright. I know that it sounds like a lot of trouble and expense, but the cost of the Bismarcks and that you want them to survive and be beautiful for years to come, makes it worthwhile!

Hope this helps!


Sunday, February 16, 2014

Vintage Valentine's Day

I had a lovely romantic weekend this Valentine’s Day.  For me, romance is having your husband surprise you with a day at the 32nd Annual Antiques Vintage & Garden Show at Orlando’s Museum of Art, presented by the Council of 101.   What a delightful day we had strolling through Orlando’s Museum of Art, looking  at the sculpture, floral displays, vignettes of horticultural accoutrements, garden room furniture, botanical prints, antique jewelry,  Flemish and modern artwork.  The three-day event included guest speaker and author of The Art of the Monogram, antique appraisals and evaluations, opportunity to talk with antique experts, a Mystery Home Tour.
Sunflowers 2009, by  Babette Bloch
The beautiful sunshine and cool breezes wrapped the museum in a glow as you entered encouraging visitors to stop and smell the orchids and enjoy the bromeliads that were showcased throughout the main hallway and in the various art exhibits.

While I would have enjoyed to have seen more live foliage, garden accoutrements, and floral arrangements throughout the show, the quality of plants displayed were wonderful and for sale.
Come stroll with me as I show you what touched my heart on Valentine’s Day.

Courtesy of Joe Knight, Landscape Architect
Steve Foster, Landscape Contractors
Courtesy of Apenberry's
Olive tree, Oleo europeana 'Arbequina'

Early 20th c. Gossip seat, Apropos

Gossip seat
Orchids display
Phalenopsis orchid display
Notice the fashion trend of staking orchids
with spaghnum moss and raffia ribbons.


Cattelya Orchid Sculpture, Lee Forrest Design
Art Sculpture created by Brian Bailey

Epidendrums, terrestrial orchids
Firecracker, Russelia equisetiformis, Plumbago

Bromeliad called Earth Stars, Cryptanthus bivittatus, and Lobelia  
       Earth Stars, Lobelia, Ivy, Heuchera, Royal Velvet plants, Gynura aurantiaca, and Silver-spotted philodendron, Scindapsus picta 'Argyraeus'

Podacarpus, Epidendrums, Kangaroo Paws, Anigozanthos spp., Roses, Schefflera

Podacarpus, Plectranthus 'Mona Lavender,'  Firecracker, Phlox, Ivy

Pink Polka Dot plant, Hypoestes phyllostachya, Ivy, Kalanchoes, Silver-spotted philodendron, Epidendrums, Lobelia,

Silver-spotted philodendrons
Kalanchoes, white Polka Dot plants.
Unknown rose species.
Floral Sculpture, Jesus Rodrieguez

Inspired by the Morris Louis painting, Delta Sigma, 1960

Close up of floral sculpture, Jesus Rodriguez, designer
Designed by Brian Joyce and Richard Streitler, Flourish Floral Productions
Floral arrangement
Floral arrangement by Gayla Greenwald

Antique garden signage

Antique garden signage

Outdoor garden patio set

Oriental garden statue
Swan planter with bromeliads

Pink Polka Dot plant, Hypoestes phyllostachya in wrought iron rack
Lantern-style terrarium

Antique watering cans

Dutch frog planter

Late 19th c.-early 20th c. Pharmaceutical Herb Glassware
Brasselaeliocattelya orchids

Dendrobium planter
Garden antiques
Garden planters, bird houses, log cabin furniture
Purple calibrachoas in antique planters

Annie Roo Collections, The Potting Shed
Succulent terrarium planters, Annie Roo Collections

We thoroughly enjoyed Council of 101's Antique and Garden Show at the Orlando Museum of Art, especially the floral sculptures and historical botanical prints.  I would have loved to have seen more live plants among the antique collections although I understand that the items were for sale and that plants can be messy and wet. Maybe next year to entice more plant lovers, they will intersperse more plant displays throughout the various museum rooms. I didn't photograph them, but if the magnificent red poppies, 19th century conservatory ferns and palms displayed with the antiques were real instead of plastic, it would be a true garden show.