effects of -23deg F in zone 6: preliminary report
Here is what I've noticed so far after those three consecutive subzero nights with the all-time record low of -23 where I live. I hope others will post their observations so we can at least learn from this event:
In the Orchard:
- Peach flower buds all killed (brown upon dissection and falling off), but only some minor twig damage apparent
- Apricot flower buds killed (I thought they were hardier than that)
- Pakistan mulberry killed nearly to ground
- Fig almost certainly dead (I'll post if it resprouts)
- Green gage plum, apples, and cherries appear fine, and should flower
In the Cactus/Succulent Bed (many were covered with snow):
- Desert agaves (A. deserti) killed
- Santa Rita prickly pear killed
- Some Engelmann's prickly pears killed
- Creosote Bush foliage and topmost growth killed
- Arizona barrel scarred but will probably pull through
- Rest so far show minor or no damage! including claret cup, Fendler's, strawpile, and Engelmann's hedgehogs, Parry's and Havard's agaves, Christmas and Klein's cholla, Whipple's yucca, Ocotillo, and others.
- Desert willows appear fine, with only minor twig damage
- Black mulberry (Morus nigra) apparently unscathed!
- Mexican elder with only minor twig damage (plant was dormant at the time)
- Silverberry (Elaeagnus pungens) possibly killed outright
- Juniper mistletoe dead and brittle in trees (will resprout out of branches I imagine?)
- Bee colonies apparently fine!
This might sound horrific, but all in all, it was not nearly as bad as I feared, especially considering my zone pushing with cacti/succulents. I will keep tabs on the situation and post again if any major changes.