Freezing temps!

clickermel(z6a SW Ohio)April 3, 2007

I have covered all the emerging foliage with shredded leaves -- which, after tonight's rain, is now Wet Shredded Leaves. I hope this will help. Anyone ever used shredded leaves?

Also -- the lilacs are in full bud. Almost ready to open. Yikes! 5 nights of below-freezing temps (in the 20s) will mean No Blooms. Am I correct in this? They are too large (15-20' high -- they are trees) to cover completely, but is there a way to salvage some of the lower branches?

What about peonies??

Any advice is greatly appreciated!

:-) Mel

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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana(zone 5/6)

I too have been thinking of the possible loss of lilac and peony buds/blooms this season, as well as viburnums. I have some new varieties of all 3 that are budded this season for the first time.

As far as the peonies, I plan to cover those that have buds with 5 gallon buckets, weighted down with a cement slab.

I may try wrapping a few of the lilac buds (in cloth) individually. A lot of damage is caused by frost being on the plant and then it being hit by the sun, so that will keep the frost off the buds anyway.

I may try some small plastic tarps over some of the new short lilacs or viburnums. It may be for naught, but it would be hard to just 'do nothing' and give up all hope of getting to see and enjoy the flowers this season.

It is predicted to be 29 here tonight. I think I will gather a bouquet today, that I can enjoy them at least briefly inside in case all the other buds perish.

I have some recently opened lilacs and viburnums, that smell so heavenly.


    Bookmark   April 4, 2007 at 7:07AM
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gdionelli(z6 WV)

Here's hoping it doesn't get as cold as they think, or not for long hours at a time!

    Bookmark   April 4, 2007 at 6:13PM
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Unfortunately, I think we're below freezing every night thru this weekend. I don't see anyway to salvage the lilacs. It's so frustrating! We have three big bushes at work, all loaded with buds just about to burst open. The Josee may still have blooms; the buds and the leaves are both small, and don't look too bad so far. The 6' Sensation lilac is probably a total loss; when I came in to work this morning all the leaves were hanging limp, like so many soggy flags.

What's doubly annoying is this was going to be the first year our 4 year-old Beauty of Moscow bloomed -- it's loaded with buds!


    Bookmark   April 5, 2007 at 2:44PM
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hairmetal4ever(Z7 MD)

At NIGHT? Geez...up here in Akron we stayed below freezing all DAY yesterday and today!

    Bookmark   April 6, 2007 at 6:03PM
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hairmetal4ever(Z7 MD)

Alison, your lilacs must be farther along than mine - the leaves are no more than a half-inch long on mine. One bush looks OK, the other looks toast. I realize they'll re-leaf as they have those smaller auxillary buds but they won't bloom this year.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2007 at 6:04PM
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hairmetal4ever(Z7 MD)

This is starting to remind me of 1997 - we had a nice early warmup, everything froze, then it didn't really warm back up until June.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2007 at 6:19PM
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bencjedi(6 - Central Kentucky)

My poor recently created berry patch lineup.. :~(

It is said to be cold/freeing through next Wednesday in central Kentucky. What happened to 80 last weekend?!!?
Shovel these plants into buckets to live in the house another week or cover em up every night (since it will be below freezing every night)?

    Bookmark   April 6, 2007 at 10:56PM
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My lilac leaves are all wilted and turning black. My little Japanese Maple that I planted last year was just coming out beautifully and now all the leaves are dry and look like they have been burned. I have a snowball bush that was budded ( small) I covered it up , but the buds still got froze. It looks like it will be pretty glum around here for a while. My Bradford Pear tree was in full bloom and now it looks like all the leaves will fall off. What will happen to all of my plants? will the leaves all fall off and come back this summer? It is so sad to see every thing like this , when they were all so pretty just a little while ago.Any sugestions or any hope?

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 12:41AM
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bencjedi(6 - Central Kentucky)

The same exact thing happened to my lilac twig I planted before Easter. Also the Japanese Maple I planted last October lost all its leaves and the branches are yellowish now. I only count maybe a dozen buds that hadn't opened before the frost. Will my tree get new leaves for the summer?

    Bookmark   April 21, 2007 at 11:13AM
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hairmetal4ever(Z7 MD)

Most healthy plants will re-leaf, probably showing some nice growth here in a few weeks again.

Keep in mind though, if they don't releaf this year, they probably won't next year or at all.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2007 at 1:23PM
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