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Anna, Teacher, writer, biologist
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I have a Majesty palm tree about 20 tall with 2 other smaller

Resolved Question:

I have a Majesty palm tree about 20' tall with 2 other smaller at it's base, I've had it approx. 8 years I planted it myself when it was only 6'.
I just noticed that the crown of the tree is limp and sagging to one side (more each day)every other thing about the tree looks fine, Please help I can't bear the thought of losing it!

Vicki Veal
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: General
Expert:  Anna replied 5 years ago.

I apologize that no one has responded to your question earlier. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online and saw your question. If you still need help, some additional information will be useful.

In what state do you live?

How wet has your weather been in recent weeks?

Describe the care the tree has gotten - watering, fertilizer, etc. Is it ever watered from above, such as from a sprinkler?

Is it leaking any sap from any part of the trunk?

Are the fronds turning brown or yellow?

Thank you.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I live in California @ the beach my soil is very sandy; the weather has been mild with no rain and the tree is watered by sprinklers that come on each night & has been since it was planted.

I see no signs of sap and the fronds look as usual a few yellow but mostly green.

It really looks as it always has just droopy now??


Vicki Veal

Expert:  Anna replied 5 years ago.
Thank you for getting back to me, Vicki. I'm working on your answer, and will post it as soon as it is typed up. I appreciate your patience.

Please don't reply to this post as that can lock me out so I won't be able to post your answer.

I'll be back in a few minutes.

Expert:  Anna replied 5 years ago.
Thank you for waiting. There are several problems that can cause a drooping crown. Watering from above can cause rot, and this species doesn't tolerate a lot of water from above. With this type of watering in combination with a certain fungus, a condition called crown drop can result. This starts with a hanging crown such as you're seeing, and then the whole crown falls off. If that's what it is, there is no cure.

However, there are other possibilities. These palms do better in Florida than they do in California because the climate is better for them there. To successfully grow them in less than optimal conditions, they need to have everything just right. Deficiencies of manganese or magnesium can cause the crown to droop. You didn't mention fertilization so I suspect the tree hasn't been fertilized. This species is a heavy feeder and needs lots of fertilizer. At a garden center or nursery, you should be able to buy a good palm fertilizer that contains these elements. The Fertilize the tree, and when you water, water at soil level rather than from above. Fertilization will not cause an immediate improvement because it takes time for the nutrients to get into the tree.

Too much or too little water can also cause drooping. Damage or disease to the roots can also interfere with water and nutrients being transported up to the leaves, but without seeing the tree, it's not possible to determine the exact cause of the problem. I recommend that you call your County Extension Agent. This is a government problem and there is no fee for their services. They usually have Master Gardeners on staff to help. If you go to the following website and click on your county, you can get contact information for local help.

If you have more questions, let me know by clicking on REPLY. I hope this will not be a serious problem.


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