|Alchemilla mollis, Lady's Mantle, unhurt by a late freeze, looking bigger and better than ever this year.|
The weekend of April 12th, temperatures topped out near 80 degrees (Fahrenheit). Then a cold front came crashing through - two nights in the mid-30s and one night where temperatures dipped all the way to 28 degrees Fahrenheit in our neighborhood. (I foreshadowed this cold snap in a blog post last week.)
In true Darwinian style, I left most plants uncovered and unprotected to fend for themselves.
Remarkably and encouragingly, most pulled through without any problems. Here's a list of the ones that laughed off the cold and the few where winter got the last laugh.
Little or No Damage:
- Agastache foeniculum, Golden Jubilee
- Ajuga genevensis (leaves and flowers both unharmed)
- Alchemilla mollis
- Aronia, Chokeberry (buds, flowers and leaves all unharmed)
- Athyrium nipponicum, Japanese Painted Fern (newly planted)
- Baptisia australis (covered with an overturned pot for protection)
- Cercis canadensis, Redbud (flowers and emerging foliage both appear unharmed)
- Chrysogonum virginianum, Green and Gold
|Chrysogonum virginianum, Green and Gold, undamaged by the cold, now bursting into bloom.|
- Clematis "Crystal Fountain" (leaves and buds both appear unharmed)
- Cranesbill Geraniums (Biokovo, Rozanne and sanguineum)
- Dianthus gratianopolitanus "Firewitch"
- Echinacea purpurea
- Fothergilla gardenii (leaves appear unharmed, some flowers may have been damaged, others seem to be fine)
- Gaillardia x grandiflora "Arizona Apricot"
- Helianthus "Lemon Queen" perennial sunflower
- Hemerocallis, Daylilies
- Hydrangea quercifolia, Oakleaf Hydrangea
|Hydrangea quercifolia, Oakleaf Hydrangea, seemed unfazed by the cold. I planted this shrub in autumn 2012 and did not see any flowers last year. Maybe this is the beginning of a flower panicle?!|
- Hypericum frondosum "Sunburst"
- Juniperus virginiana, Brodie, Burkii and Grey Owl varieties
- Lavandula, Lavender, "Hidcote" (newly planted)
- Liatris spicata
- Liriope muscari (newly planted)
- Lonicera sempervirens, Coral Honeysuckle (leaves, buds and flowers)
- Malus, Crabapple, "SugarTyme" variety (leaves seem fine, flowers were pretty much finished blooming anyway, so it's hard to gauge whether they would have been damaged)
- Panicum virgatum, Switchgrass, "Northwind" (covered one clump with an overturned pot, but new growth on both protected and unprotected clumps seems equally unharmed)
- Philadelphus x virginalis, Mock Orange, "Natchez" (leaves and buds both seem unharmed)
|Philadelphus x virginalis, Mock Orange, Natchez variety, leaves and buds appear totally undamaged by last week's cold snap|
- Phlox paniculata
- Platycodon, Balloon Flower (covered one clump with an overturned pot, but the control clump that was not covered looks fine too)
- Polystichum acrostichoides, Christmas Fern (newly planted)
- Rhus aromatica, Fragrant Sumac, "Gro-Low" (buds seem fine, there may be a little foliar damage on some emerging leaves, but I think the majority of emerging foliage seems fine at this point)
|Rhus aromatic "Gro-Low" Sumac does not seem to have been set back at all by the freeze. Check out those beautiful lemon yellow buds and fresh multicolored foliage! I'm enraptured!!|
- Stachys byzantina, Lamb's Ear, "Helene von Stein"
- Veronica umbrosa, Prostrate Speedwell, "Georgia Blue" (leaves and flowers both seem unharmed)
- Viburnum prunifolium, Blackhaw (buds and open flowers both seem unharmed)
- Viburnum x pragense, Prague (buds and open flowers both seem unharmed)
|Neither the new leaves nor the flowers on the Prague Viburnums were damaged by the late freeze|
- Viburnum rhytidophylloides, Alleghany variety (perhaps a little foliage damage on some plants, another seems unharmed)
- Agastache rugosa, Honey Bee Blue (perhaps 30% of foliage seems damaged/killed on newly installed plants)
- Aucuba japonica (established leaves seem fine, some of the of emerging new growth may have been damaged)
- Buxus sempervirens, Hardy Boxwood (established leaves seem fine, but new growth seems limp and damaged, I suspect I'll need to break out the pruning shears and give the Boxwoods a haircut back to healthy growth)
|Wilted and whitened foliage marks frost and/or freeze damage on a Boxwood (Buxus)|
- Cephalotaxus harringtonia, Japanese Plum Yew, "Prostrata" (established foliage seems fine, it looks as though the new growth may have been damaged, but I'm not familiar enough with this newly-installed plant to diagnose the degree of damage with any certainty)
- Ceratostigma plumbaginoides, Leadwort Blue Plumbago (newly emerging foliage seems limp, dark brown and dead)
- Hibiscus syriacus, Rose of Sharon (newly emerging foliage and young leaves on both Rose of Sharons looks limp and dead)
|Newly emerging foliage got fried on this Blue Bird Rose of Sharon. |
This photo was taken about a week after the cold snap.
- Lagerstroemia indica, Crape Myrtle (most newly emerging foliage looks dead and blackened, fortunately several trees had not yet started to leaf out, interestingly foliage on a few branches of one Natchez crape seems fine, even though foliage on other branches seems dead!)
|Crape myrtle with frozen dead leaves and fresh green leaves on different branches|
- Vitex agnus-castus, Chaste Tree (newly emerging foliage appears to have been totally killed)
|Vitex agnus-castus foliage appears to have bitten the dust.|
No sign of any new foliage yet in the week since the freeze.
So that's the story.
Overall, I was very pleased with the way most plants pulled through.