The armed arm or blue palm is a plant that has its origin in the Baja California region of Mexico where temperatures tend to be high most of the yearHence its high capacity to adapt to environments that are very dry and hot.
Its adaptability and the high ornamental value of the plant is the reason why it is cultivated in various parts of the world, where it can be seen in always vigorous and decorative outdoor gardens, even when they are in full sun and in places where it rains very little.
Features armed arm
Knowing the characteristics of the blue palm tree will help you decide if it is a good option for your garden. ornamental matterbut you have to take into account other elements such as the available space:
- It reaches a maximum height of 15 meters.
- It is very resistant to droughts.
- It supports direct sun, although you can also place it where it has sun at certain times of the day. It is not an indoor plant.
- They have a high level of tolerance to low temperatures, in fact it supports up to -10º C.
- The trunk is erect, with a wider base than the rest.
- The leaves are palm-shaped.
- It has thorns.
- The plant reaches a diameter of approximately 6 meters.
- The trunk reaches a diameter of 50 cm.
- Very resistant to winds.
- Supports pruning.
- Easy to transplant.
- Moderately tolerant of salinity.
It is important to keep in mind that we are talking about a plant with a high ornamental level whose growth is somewhat slowFor example, if what we want for the garden, a park or a swimming pool area, tall blue palm trees must know that many years of cultivation will pass before it reaches at least 10 meters.
¿Have you ever wondered why it is called a blue palm tree? This is how it is known, because when the sunlight falls on it, shades between blue and gray can be observed in its leaves depending on the angle from which you are observing them. This is one of the most outstanding characteristics of the armed arm and the longer you are in the sun, the more prominent these shades become.
How is the cultivation?
Until now we have emphasized how resistant the plant is to droughts, however, if you want to cultivate it it is important that in its first years it is supplied with water frequently since this directly affects its growth.
In seasons with low rainfall or in very arid areas, abundant irrigation is recommended every two weeks, so that their development is not affected, while when it is winter it is practically not necessary to water them. With regard to adding fertilizers, this will depend on whether the substrate is very sandy or lacking in nutrients, in which case it is advisable to apply those with high nitrogen content like NPK complexes.
The amount will depend on the height, without already having a meter, you should apply between 200 and 400 grams of the nutrient of your choice that is rich in nitrogen, which should be sufficient to meet the nutritional needs of the plant when you need it most, which is between spring and summer.
It is important that before planting you make sure the soil is drained to prevent the water from pooling, which would damage the plant in a short time. Likewise, a hole must be prepared at least 50 centimeters deep, incorporate some organic matter into it and place the plant on it. In its natural environment the blue palm tree has the ability to develop in different types of soil whose pH is neutral, alkaline or acidic even in soils where there are very few nutrients. If the substrate is sandy or clayey, it is ideal for the underground part to grow strong.
Direct sun exposure is directly linked to normal plant growth, which is quite slow under optimal circumstances.
Plant pests and diseases
It is also known for its great resistance to pests and diseasesHowever, it must be taken care of from the plague of the Red weevil, an insect native to Indonesia that usually attacks the leaf crown of palm trees from the inside until it kills them.
Uses of the plant
It is very attractive in Mediterranean-style gardens to which it adjusts very well due to the type of climate between arid and dry, they are usually planted alone so that it unfolds its splendor without distractions. When they are young plants they are used to decorate terraces or patios in pots.
When they are in the flowering stage, the hanging inflorescences that reach 6 meters in length make your palm look full, in fact it is quite a spectacle to see the flowering plant under the moonlight as it acquires an impressive silver tone.
The inflorescences are covered with gray flowers, all hermaphrodites, and flowering begins when the plant is still very young. As for the fruits in principle they are yellow and then in their mature stage they turn dark brown. They are not attractive to birds at all.
If you grow to transplant, it is recommended to do it in a pot since if you do it in the ground, once the plant has been rooted it is very difficult for it to have adequate rooting. The reproduction of the blue palm tree is through seeds. The plant requires pruning although the dry leaves remain hanging for a long time, when removing them, pay attention and respect the burlap that protects or covers the stipe.
In summary we have talked about a plant with a high decorative value always in external environments since it resists direct sun, In its mature stage it is also very tolerant to temperatures down to -10º CIt does not require much irrigation and occurs in soils with little nutritional value. Ideal for large spaces where she can show off all the beauty of its leaves and robust trunk.