Sadly, our specimen of P. sargentii, planted in 1995, had been in decline for a couple years and the palm started looking extremely bad early in April, to the point where it was clear the vital top of the palm had died (note how the youngest fronds are completely brown).
Alas, there was nothing more we could do to try and save our beloved Pseudophoenix. Interestingly, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden was also experiencing a die-off of their Pseudophoenix, the cause of which is still unclear but thought to be fungal in nature. With nothing left we could do for the palm, we reluctantly readied the axe (er...electric saw). Here follows the photographic chronicle of the last hours of our Pseudophoenix and the light that emerged from this darkness.
|The trunk was cut in small sections, as it is quite filled with liquid and therefore quite heavy.|
|Veronika continued to work with the saw to free up the base of the palm with eventual hard-fought success! Getting the base of the tree out of the hole and onto a dollie was the really hard part...|
|Close-up of the top of the palm, which looks quite dead and a bit rotten.|
|The core of the palm, which Veronika pulled out, was clearly dead and smelled awful; I mean really, really awful...no palm wine from this, thank you.|
|After searching for a replacement, we decided to try our luck again with another P. sargentii, which Veronika and I are putting in the ground here. Her husband René (not pictured) also helped us get the plant in the ground.|
|After death, new life.|