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How Not to Kill A Jubea Chilensis

Landscape Design
Wild Heliconias in Ecuadorian Amazon

Pete Strelkow shares his reflections and experience on moving large specimens, plant maintenance, and garden design.

Hey amigos…. This is Pete Strelkow.  Just checking in and hoping you all had a nice holiday season. I have been doing some work in Ecuador over the last several years and I wanted to share a palm story.

Jubea Chilensis – I got notice that a big one was going to be demo’ed in a small town near Cuenca. I convinced the owner of my project to take a chance to move this fat boy with a crane and his guys.

We took a shot with no prep whatsoever. Things went smoothly until the tree was dropped 15 feet to the ground when the chain snapped during initial lift.

I assumed a broken center bud, but it was moved and planted anyway, using sand for the media.  All the center leaves then fell out, other leaves began drooping and many were slowly lost over the last two years…

I declared it dead.

Oscar, the owner, said ‘Tranquillo’, and have some patience… this is Ecuador.

Well, of course he was right. Last week, I visited the site and saw several new leaves emerging.

Amazingly, the Jubea palm is now on its way to recovery and will anchor the circle entry drive as designed.

This old dog has learned a new trick...

Hasta pronto… see you soon.

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