Sabal is an unpretentious competitor of dates and hamerops – growing and care

Palm trees today, when the assortment of indoor plants seems more extensive than ever, remain one of the most widespread ornamental deciduous crops. In addition, they are the clear leaders among gigantic sized indoor pets. But if palm trees such as dates, hamerops, washingtonia are found everywhere, then sabal, unfortunately, is not so popular. But this palm is much more hardy, unpretentious, easy to care for. The giant sabal also has other advantages. After all, beautiful fans of leaves with a luxurious color can leave few people indifferent.

Dwarf sabal (sabal minor). Farmer Burea-Uinsurance.com exotenzentrum
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Palm tree with perfect fan-shaped foliage

Sabal is one of the most fashionable medicinal plants today. Preparations based on it, like oils extracted from palm wood, are advertised literally at every step. But Sabal’s talents are far from limited to a beneficial effect on the skin and the work of the prostate gland. First of all, sabal is one of the easiest palm trees to grow. And one of the most beautiful. The luxurious leaves of this palm tree will easily overshadow any other decorative deciduous plant in the interior.

Sabal is a fine example of the classic fan-shaped leaf shape. This representative of the huge family of palm trees impresses primarily in size: even in room culture, sabals reach two meters in height. Since plants grow only the number of leaves, they maintain a stable height, but not the splendor of the crown. In addition, sabal grows slowly at a young age and only after decades does it begin to show great activity. And according to this parameter, no other palm tree can compete with it.

The leaves of the sabals are really luxurious. They can grow up to 1 m wide, ideally fan-shaped, which is only emphasized by symmetrical lobes and deeply cut plates. The dissection is very deep, up to ¾ of the length, the plates are rigid and in good harmony with the petioles widened at the base. The leaves of the sabal are straight, bend only with age, which makes it possible to appreciate their shape in all their glory.

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Sabal in room culture is represented by two varieties that are completely different in growth form. The differences between them are significant, but only in one parameter – aboveground or underground type of trunk. But the leaves, sizes, as well as the care requirements for all sabals are absolutely the same.

Dwarf sabal (sabal minor) – a species in which the trunk is modified and fully develops underground. Only leaves in a kind of lush bunch rise above the substrate of this palm tree. The crown is very beautiful, usually uniform, round and dense. This sabal has very bright leaves, but colder, with a bluish-blue tint.

Sabal palmetto – a classic palm tree with an elevated trunk, albeit rather short. Above a slender stalk are magnificent leaves in a spherical crown. The color of the leaves is rich, but dark, with classic herbaceous shades and no cold ebb. The dense, spreading crown of this sabal seems massive and elegant at the same time. And the trunk is covered with the remains of luxurious leaf cuttings. In nature, palmette grows several tens of meters, but in rooms it is also limited to two meters in height.

Sabal in the interior

This plant is large, it has been brought into interiors for decades, and sabal requires, first of all, a correct presentation: treat this palm tree as a piece of furniture and a big accent. Like all large palms, sabals conceal space, visually reduce the size of the room. They need to be used wisely, so that the plant does not overwhelm or overload the interior. Sabal needs space and an environment that is not overloaded with details.

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Cultivation of sabal will not cause trouble even for inexperienced growers. This is one of the easiest palm trees to care for, for which the right choice of growing conditions and modest care are a sufficient guarantee of high decorativeness. Moreover, sabal is almost the only palm tree that easily puts up with violations of care. Of course, only if deviations from optimal conditions do not become systemic and critical.

Sabal will forgive you for the lack of watering, if you have to urgently leave, single overflows or lack of fertilizing. It is still not necessary to admit violations, but they will not become disastrous for the sabal or for his attractive foliage.

Sabal dwarfSabal dwarf. Farmer Burea-Uinsurance.com KENPEI

Conditions comfortable for sabals

According to their preferences for lighting, sabali can rightly be called typical palm trees. Regardless of the time of year, they need to be provided with the brightest possible lighting. These are light-loving plants that can put up with a sunny location, and even with the brightest places in your home. But just protect the palm tree from direct midday rays: they will leave spots on the leaves.

If you have purchased varietal sabals, especially varieties of palmette of the latest selection, then your plant will be able to put up with even light shading. The lack of light for a sabal with an aboveground trunk will not be critical, only the color of the leaves will change slightly, but the palm tree will not hurt and look worse.

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As for the temperature, here too the sabal will pleasantly surprise. In the warm season, he loves standard room conditions from 21-22 degrees and above, but at the same time he is not too afraid of the heat. But it is better to pay special attention to the selection of the winter regime for keeping this plant. Sabali prefer cool wintering.

If, in the coldest season, this palm tree is placed in a room with a temperature range of 10 to 15 degrees Celsius, then it will become one of the most luxurious decorative leafy soloists in the interior. But with regard to the temperature regime, sabal will show its plasticity and adaptability. Love for a cool winter does not mean at all that the palm tree cannot be grown at stable room temperatures.

Sabal will grow and show off at temperatures of about 15 and about 20 degrees, and even hotter conditions will not harm it. It is enough just to compensate for the increase in temperature by a corresponding increase in air humidity, by correcting traditional watering for more abundant procedures in accordance with the environment in which the plant is located. Hot wintering can also cause the tips of the leaves to dry out, but if you actively humidify the air and spray the plant, then even such difficulties will not arise.

Sabali love fresh air. These palms can be grown both as a garden tub, kept indoors exclusively from the moment of the arrival of cold weather until May, and as a combined crop, which is transferred to open places in the summer.

Giant and imposing sabals will be a magnificent decoration for balconies, terraces, and recreation areas in the garden. At the same time, this palm tree is not too afraid of precipitation and drafts (but not in extreme embodiment) and feels more than comfortable in gardens. The main thing is to take into account that in the fresh air the lighting is completely different, and like other plants, the sabal must be provided with partial shade (it corresponds to the solar location in the room).

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Sabal palmettoSabal palmetto. Farmer Burea-Uinsurance.com someone10x

Caring for sabal at home

Sabal is a sun-dependent plant. If you do not turn the container with a palm tree, it will bend, the beautiful silhouette will be somewhat disturbed. Therefore, try to rotate the plant regularly to maintain an even distribution of leaves in the crown.

Watering and moisture for sabals

Sabal is not too fond of waterlogged soil, excessive watering and poor soil permeability. Therefore, procedures for him should always be infrequent, carried out taking into account the rate of drying of the substrate in the pot.

Even in winter, it should not dry out completely, but watering should be light and only maintain a slightly moist state of the soil. But during the period of active growth, sabal is rarely watered, but abundantly, so that the substrate remains moist, but between the procedures the upper and partially the middle layer of the soil dries out. The classical frequency of watering is 1 time in 4-5 days in summer and 1 time in 7-8 days in winter. It is better to drain the water from the pallets immediately after the procedures.

Sabal calmly puts up with the driest “atmosphere” in the house. It is vital to increase the air humidity to at least 60-70% only during wintering in hot conditions. In the rest of the year, it is better to focus on the condition of the plant and the air temperature in the room. So, in the summer, sabal will not give up spraying, especially if it is outdoors.

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The sabal signals the need to adjust the humidity to compensate for other uncomfortable parameters by yellowing of the leaves. Installation of humidifiers or pallets for sabal is not necessary (and it is ineffective due to the size of the plant). It is better to humidify the air exclusively by spraying, while during the procedure, moisture should fall on all sides of the leaves.

In addition to spraying, this palm tree will respond only with gratitude to regular wiping of the leaves. Once a month in the fall and winter and every week in the summer, clean the leaves of accumulated dust. You can only wipe greens with a soft sponge.

Top dressing for sabal

It is necessary to feed this palm only during the period of active development. From October to the end of February, feeding for sabal is prohibited, and during the period of active growth, fertilizers are applied once a month or 2-3 weeks. For this plant, you should select a special mixture of fertilizers for palm trees or complex fertilizers for decorative deciduous plants. Suitable for sabal and a mixture of fertilizers for yucca or dracaena.

Sabal, unlike many other palms, responds well to long-term fertilizers. This palm can be grown with minimal maintenance by using special capsules or mineral sticks.

Sabal transplant

Changing the container and substrate for this plant is by no means an easy task. And the point is not only that sabali are large plants and require skill due to their weight and size. After all, these palms do not tolerate root injuries and can die due to the wrong, rough approach. Sabali is not transplanted, but transshipped. At the same time, select the frequency of procedures only according to the need for the plant itself, and not according to a specific schedule.

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Even young sabals do not always need to be replanted annually, and adult palms are transplanted at all not more often than 1 time in 3 years, and better – every 5-6 years. Agree in advance with the assistants: one person cannot cope with a sabal transplant.

Sabali can be transplanted only at the very beginning of the active growth phase, in March-April. Focus on the signs of complete filling of the substrate with roots: transfer the plant only if the roots begin to crawl out of the hole.

In years when sabal is not transplanted, the topsoil must be renewed. Gently loosen the top of the potting medium, remove the old soil without touching the roots or touching them, and pour the same layer of the new substrate on top.

Substrate for sable: This palm tree can only develop normally in clay soil. But since the sabal is sensitive to moisture stagnation, does not tolerate waterlogging, the specific texture of the soil will need to be compensated for with a powerful drainage layer. The composition of the substrate also needs to be given increased attention.

The older your sabal is, the more turf soil it needs. Young plants are planted in a soil mixture of equal shares of foliage, humus and sod soils with a half share of sand, but with each transplant, it is better to increase the share of sod land. Special substrates for palm trees (even for yucca or dracaena) are perfect for sabal.

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Capacities for sabal: This palm should be planted in large pots, appropriate not only for the size of the rhizome, but also for the heavy crown of the plant. Please note that the containers must be stable. Often this palm is planted in tubs. But the main thing is that the pots are equipped with either one large drainage system or several drain holes, and the width of the container is less than the height. The containers are increased by 2-4 cm compared to the previous one.

Sabal palmettoSabal palmetto

Sabal pruning

This palm tree can withstand partial leaf pruning if needed. If, due to problems with leaving or improper selection of growing conditions, dry areas, tips, spots appear on the leaves of sabal, then the damaged areas can be safely cut out with sharp scissors. But the cut should be done not “live”, but leaving a thin strip of dry tissue over the green part of the leaf.

Pests and diseases:

  • thrips;
  • scale insects;
  • spider mite;
  • felt maker.

It is better to fight insects with combined methods – manual cleaning of leaves and spraying with insecticides.

Common problems in the development of sabal:

  • yellowing of leaves with prolonged repeated drying of the substrate or a combination of dry air and high temperatures;
  • the appearance of brown tips on the leaves during hot wintering.

Sabal breeding methods

You can only propagate this palm tree by seeds. They germinate for a very long time, and young plants grow slowly. If you decide to grow sabal yourself, the first thing to stock up on is patience. Seeds are germinated in a mixture of chopped moss, peat and sand with constant bottom heating and high humidity.

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Anna Evans

Author ✓ Farmer

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