When getting rid of palm tree pests, beware of fronds

September 19, 2012

Topic: hand pain

When getting rid of palm tree pests, beware of fronds

People living in an area with a tropical climate may be the caretakers of palm trees and have to do a little more than just manage the plants' appearance. Since Florida had a mild winter, these cold-sensitive plants happily grew. However, now that the hot and humid summer is coming to an end, palm trees may be the home of many critters, as reported by the Miami Herald.

The key to removing these pests and the mold they may leave behind is water and a damp rag. Depending on the height of the tree, people can use a hose to get up top, but otherwise wiping down the dirty areas is a safer way to clean them rather than using pesticides. When handling palm trees, it's important to be aware of fronds, or the pointy leaves, which can accidentally stab an individual. What's worse is that these spikes can carry marine-environment bacteria that may cause hand pain and an infection that needs to be evaluated by a physician. In severe cases, surgery may be needed.

In general, people should never remove fronds that don't hang below a line parallel to the ground. Palm trees shed naturally, according to palm tree maintenance site Sun Palm Trees.

So if individuals find themselves needing to exterminate pests, they should make sure that they're wearing good gloves. If a person does get spiked from a frond, he or she should immediately call a doctor, who can prescribe antibiotics if necessary. 

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