Tuesday, February 26, 2008
My Ponytail Palm new growth
When I was backing out of my driveway this morning, I noted two little side growths on one trunk of my Ponytail Palm (Beaucarnea recurvata). This succulent, palm-like shrub is a member of the Agave family and is known by several names. It has earned the name "elephant's foot" because of its bulbous base. Because of its base and thin trunk have some people call it a bottle palm. . As a houseplant, the ponytail palm normally reaches about three feet in height. When grown outdoors in warm climates, it can easily reach 20 feet tall. My tree is approximately 10-12 ft. high. Normally it will only have one main trunk until it is a few years old. Then it develops branches towards the top.
I wanted to come back home after work today and take a picture, but it was dark before I could get to it...so this shot was taken with a flash. A few years ago, our tree was tall, and only one trunk. We cut it down by about 1/2, and it really branched out...forming more thick, trunk -like branches, all with their own plummage on top. They are really weird, yet pretty trees. Mine has found itself in a terrible spot with our huge Black Olive tree competing with it...We trimmed the Black Olive back a few years ago as well, and we have had a good length of time where they were independantly happy. BUT...the time has come again to make a decision about whether to remove this Ponytail, or move it. It will be difficult because it will tear up our sidewalk to get it out, and we will need a crane to move it. It's gonna be a big job when the time comes!!!
On a side note, this tree was the subject of a nature photography contest I entered a few years ago, and we (the tree and I ) got "Honorable Mention". It was online for a while, but I was searching and cannot find it anymore. She's been a good little tree for a lot of years! Here is a previous picture I had taken of her: