hydrangea possible frost

gardenapprenticeApril 13, 2014

I have three meritt supreme hydrangeas Tuesdays forecast low is 30F would that kill the foilage... We already experienced a frost so would they refoliate again if the frost occurred?

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luis_pr

Why don't you try mulching, watering and covering them with burlap/blankets the day of or a day before the cold weather strikes? Then remove the protection once the sun comes out. This may help minimize any damage that could occur.

This post was edited by luis_pr on Sun, Apr 13, 14 at 22:14

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 10:12PM
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gardenapprentice

Its going to rain heavily on Monday and they have 2 inches of mulch around them is that good

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 10:17PM
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luis_pr

Yes. Cover them up Tuesday night and remove the cover in the morning after the danger of frost has passed.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 11:19PM
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gardenapprentice

That's the problem I'm gonna be gon until 11pm or later and I have no one who can come and cover them up I guess I have to hope they dnt get damage

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 11:32PM
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luis_pr

The low of the day usually occurs later than 11pm so, hopefully, you might be able to cover them at that time or cover them before going to work.

Over here for example, the low announced on the forecasts usually occurs between the hours of 5am to 7am. If you do not want a repeat of leaf damage, cover them up at 11pm (if the temp will still be above freezing) or before going to work. Hopefully, after the low comes & goes, the temps will zip right back up which is better than the temps staying low for many hours on end. That type of "temporary" low that lasts a few hours is does less damage than when the temp goes down and stays there for extended periods. Unfortunately, freeze warnings can last much longer than just 5-7am.

To check exactly when you will get temps of 30s on Tuesday Night, go to www.weather.com on Monday Night and enter either your zip code or your city/state. This will give you "today's forecast". To switch to hourly forecasts, click the link titled 'Hourly Forecast' located below the current/high/low temps of the day. Then review the hr-by-hr forecasts. Note: you get only a few hours at a time so you may need to click on the "Next hours" links to get to Tuesday Night.

I had this same this issue more than a month ago but it did not affect the hydrangeas (they had not leafed out yet). Other shrubbery/trees were affected and eventually leafed out (for a third time).

This post was edited by luis_pr on Tue, Apr 15, 14 at 8:11

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 4:47AM
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gardenapprentice

We get rain today I heard water alone sometimes is enough, I checked my hourly forecast and it calls for clear skies and from 9-6 it goes from about 40 to 32 so will the rain received be enough? If I can give them a quick drink and fully saturate them will 7pm be ideal? I can get someone to do it hopefully

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 7:46AM
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luis_pr

Well, water and mulch help protect the root system but it will not protect the leaves that you were concerned about. Covering them protects the leaves. That is why originally suggested all three. You can water 1-2 days before the frost date.

I will see how all that works here tonight. It turns out that we have a freeze warning for my area tonight. But since it rained on Sunday, I am not going to take any watering action. The plants are mulched already too so no action there. Cover them? I will let the hydrangeas fend off by themselves. I have way too many other plants to protect and bring inside. If there is a freeze, they say it will be a record breaker, as in the latest freeze ever for this area.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 3:58PM
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gardenapprentice

Sorry to hear the freeze warning ... We have a freeze watch only for a few hours. Neighbors down my street have a hydrangea idk if they protect or not they don't seem worried. I have two one year old hydrangeas with little leaves I think some of the mulch is basically almost covering it... So maybe that may be a form of protection. The other one is next to my house and maybe may get a degree or two more warmer. Good luck we have storms in the forecast tonight so that'll be good I won't cover then...

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 5:07PM
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luis_pr

My freeze warning is quite lengthy, from 1am until 10am so we will see tomorrow how the plants fared. Good luck with yours!

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 7:55AM
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gardenapprentice

We have a freeze warning g too ours is 12/ hours long from 10 pm to 10am ugh they're going to die

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 8:56AM
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luis_pr

The leaves may have taken a hit but if the roots are ok then all will be fine eventually Looks like it was a good day here as I do not see any leaf damage so far. Hope you did well too.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 12:04PM
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sandyl(Zone 6B -7)

I Live in middle Tn just 20 miles south of Nashville and I just uncovered my two this past Saturday when we had a hi the med 70's and now tonight we are going down to the upper to med 20's. My two had been covered up since last fall when I installed a waist high fence made from chicken wire around them and packed them with fall leaves. Removed the leaves and found 8" to 10" of several new tender growth shoots. I had placed a bed sheet over the fence so the tender shoots could harden off but now I will have to put something over them heaver then a bedsheet to pretect them from the low temps tonight. I had burned the leave over the weekend, I should have keep them foran emgerency like this. :(

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 12:11PM
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gardenapprentice

I'm so glad. I heard if it tsins or if the soil is wet, than the plant would stay a degree or two warmer I guess it was true because they are alive. The low dropped to 32 at the coldest.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 8:37AM
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