Uber Alley – Frozen Palms

Published April 18, 2021

Many of you in the Road Trip Interest Group*  live in Houston and experienced “The Freeze” of February 2021.  One thing you cannot have failed to notice is the dead palm trees that are sprinkled like brown confetti in every part of the Houston.

*My email list for article alerts.  Go to “Contact”, put Road Trip in the subject line and include your email address.  You’ll get a Blind CC message with a short description and link once every couple of weeks, max

Figure  1:  Variations of this scene are repeated thousands of times across the Greater Houston Metropolitan Area.

   The devastation is frequently in commercial zones, especially at Tropical Wannabe bars and restaurants.  I do not dispute that these trees do supply a pleasant view while partaking of libation.  However, it has become obvious that such plants are not appropriate for the climate, even though they may persist for years.   This place may have been vacant at the time.  I doubt if insurance would pay off for the landlord.  Such trees are an asset in a patio bar and the cost to remove them will be substantial. 

Precious few of these plants will survive, but I have seen a few, especially where the plants and trees were close to buildings or where the residents had actively protected the subjects.

A good example can be seen in figure 2, below.

Figure 2:  These houses are a few blocks apart in the same neighborhood.  Note the vivid difference in outcome.  I take the liberty of warning young folks that the “drop-light” strategy requires incandescent light bulbs – NOT LEDs!   Such attention to the trees in figure one would obviously be impractical. 

There is a big stand of (dead) palms at I45 South and Broadway.  A sad sight, but magnificent in its scope! I’ll try to get by there for a photo-shoot.

I too, worked hard to protect our crop of Aji Amarillo Picante.  Alas, all was in vain!

Hasta Luego,


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