Frost/Freeze in Tennessee April

kathy003April 13, 2008

Once again we are expecting some cold temperatures beyond our typical last frost date.

All my hosta are showing eyes. Some are about to unfurl. My favorite, Sum & Substance, are about to unfurl. Last year they did this during the 'teen' freeze in April. I used upturned pots for protection in 07. Going to try mounds of mulch this time.

I am arguing with myself over my "zone" of '7'... the weather is acting like I am back in zone '6'.

Any of you transition zone people having the same problem?

Kathy

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esther_opal

Some years ago in e tn it snowed on Apr 22
You aren't past the frost free date?

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 4:17PM
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kathy003

I am not past the frost free date.

Month by Month Gardening (Judy Lowe) book says Anderson County (where I live) has an average last frost of Apr 15 - Apr 30. I am on a ridge, so my temps are a little warmer than the valley. We had an 80 degree day this last week, and a number of 70 degree days the previous week.

Knoxville, about 15 to 20 miles away, has an average last frost date of April 10 or so.

Some TN gardening gurus have been debating our hardiness zone. Books say I am maybe a 6b zone. Cannas do well even with freezes and snow. Tulips typically rot in summer. They did not rot this past year. In fact, old tulips are up and blooming.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 5:02PM
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esther_opal

Those 70's & 80's are the problem and our frost free dates may be changing but you have a week or three to feel safe from frost.

I could not think of Oak Ridge as any form of 7 and I was in E. TN working in horticultural sales for 20 yrs beginning in 73. Selling bedding plants caused me to watch the weather very closely but my memory isn't perfect except the Apr 22 snow in Newport, TN.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 5:34PM
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hosta_freak(z6 NC)

Don't know about all that,but I am south of you and I am in zone 6. Our last frost date is supposed to be Apr. 15th. We are supposed to have 2 more nights of cold weather before we return to warmer temps. My hostas are all up,and some are leafed out almost all the way.These next 2 nights should prove interesting! I pray for some mercy from the weather,as this is promising to be one of my best hosta years. Phil

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 8:02PM
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newhostaaddict

supposed to be in the 20s here the next 2 nights...

most hostas are not peaking out yet...other than the undulatas...

but....i have been forcing myself to stay away from them at least until tuesday...so maybe more have their noses up...

and it is quite wet right now....which does help in the keeping away...

but what will be will be...too many to try to cover...sooo...they better be tough...

jill

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 9:36PM
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akewa

Last night was colder than Monday. We got down to 33. I did not even cover the hostas as all are zoned for colder. All look great not even wilting. They are all planted next to our house so I bet that helped.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 12:34PM
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esther_opal

"We got down to 33. I did not even cover the hostas as all are zoned for colder."

Hardiness zone is winter hardiness not spring when they come up, and they are very, very winter hardy.

You either have to prevent early emergence (which isn't easy) or suffer damage from freezes depending on how far out they are.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 1:19PM
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