Sago Saga Part 1

First let me say…

sago in storeI did not purchase the above plant. I took the picture merely to show the price, which you really can’t see after all. But it was something like $79.99.March 2017Suffice it to say, I have my own. I actually think it originally came from Grandma Tracy’s house, and it seems like it’s been around here forever. In March of 2017 it was doing okay in the front yard, but it was outgrowing its pot. Plus, this is Fresno, and at the risk of perpetuating the typical Fresno “put-downs”, sago palms do occasionally get stolen from people’s front yards.yellow sago palm Jul 2017Apparently I wasn’t watering it enough, because in July of 2017 it looked like this. So I loaded it up on my trusty teacher “roll-y cart” and brought it around to the back. Aug 2017I trimmed it back and put it in partial shade, and by August of the same year it was starting to look pretty Jan 30 2018By January of 2018 it even had babies!september 2018This was September of 2018. It had turned all yellow again, so I trimmed it all the way back, and tried to figure out where to plant it in the yard.sago palm plantedI went ahead and put it there, and then made my first mosaic planter out of the pot it had been in. It basically looked like this until about April of this year. And then…

Imagine my delight when all these new leaves sprouted! 5-28-19By the end of May it was flourishing in all its splendor!June 2019Still looking good in June. (Just don’t ask about the yellow flowers.)todayAnd now that it’s August, it looks like this! Granted, it has been really hot, and it pretty much gets full, direct sun. Upon looking up “sago palm leaves turning yellow in the center” I discovered that they really aren’t supposed to be in direct sun all day. When I looked up “transplanting sago palms” I realized that would likely be more of a pain than it was worth, and I might actually kill it off if I did it in the middle of August. So I went to “Plan B”.

At one time there was this plastic white lattice on the patio in front of the window. When I finally decided to take it down, I saved it “for such a time as this”, where it spent a couple of years up against the fence at the side of the house. Maybe now I could use it to make some sort of awning or shade for the sago palm.lattice in yardFortunately, at my house there is no shortage of random pieces of PVC pipe and all the connectors. From helping Mark make puppet stages for Sunday school over the years, I know how to cut them and attach them together.

The lattice turned out to be easy to cut with this yard clipper. Soon I had it cut in half. I did have to cut it a little smaller, and then my job was to figure out how to use the PVC pipes as a frame.hardpanFirst off, much of the ground in this area of California is hard pan. In fact, if you want to read something really fascinating about someone who did amazing things with hard pan, click this link and take a look at Fresno’s Forestiere Underground Gardens !

Unlike Baldassare Forestiere, I didn’t have the patience to dig through even my tiny bit of hard pan, so I had to bring out the hose.

With a little trial and error the lattice shade started to take shape. It looked great! There was only one problem. The sun moves in the opposite direction, so instead of getting more shade as  the day went on, it got less!puppet stageAround 8:00 that evening I had decided something like this would be better. It needed more of an overhead shade than a side shade. text 1As usual, multiple texts to Christy and my sister were in order.

This morning I made a quick trip to Carlos’s store for some zip ties, and voila! Now the sago palm shade looks lots better and I think it should keep at least some of  the mid- afternoon sun off . new plantsOh, and speaking of Carlos’s store, look what I got when I was there the other day! New plants for the cactus area.

 Stay tuned…

10 thoughts on “Sago Saga Part 1

  1. What a great idea! The ‘shade going the wrong way’ made me smile. That tripped me up when we moved to the southern hemisphere where the sun does go the other way: east-north-west. It seemed very weird at first.
    Looking forward to seeing your cactus garden 🙂

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