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Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

Posted by lou_midlothian_tx z8 DFW, Tx (My Page) on
Wed, Mar 5, 14 at 19:31

I had always wondered about but did not expect it. Central Texas got hit in the low 20s the other night.

Not sure just how badly it got damaged. It may take a few days to see full extent of it.

I never saw late hard freeze like that at the old house for the whole time in Dallas-Fort Worth area. It supposedly got down to mid 10 there the other night. Ouch.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

hey lou ...

cant speak to this one..

but i have had deciduous conifers hit ... repeatedly in a spring season with such.. most particularly ... dawn redwood.. metasequoia gyp ...

it apparently has many dormant buds.... and bounces right back ...

if we have a particularly early warm spell.. it would bud out.. equivalent to yours... and then get hit... and then look like yours.. or worse ...

and then 4 to 5 weeks later.. in the middle of recovery.. another hard frost/freeze zapped it again ... so it rebudded.. and moved on with life ...

taxodium dis .... bald cypress.. buds so late for me.. i never noticed it damaged ... go figure ...

time and proper water is all you can give it.. keep us posted ...

ken

ps: though it wasted a bunch of stored energy ... i would not juice it .. [well..ever.. lol] .. but i would not fert it.. until all chance of frost is gone ... if not late fall.. so it can store it for next year ....


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

  • Posted by whaas 5a SE WI (My Page) on
    Thu, Mar 6, 14 at 12:33

Evergreen conifers can be badly damged by early season freezes. Good news is that its somewhat uncommon due to timing.

Decidous confiers are like any decidous plant where they rebound no problem after hard freezes. As Ken mentioned I can't speak for that species but by Bald Cypress had no problem with that record early spring a couple years back in March that then followed with repeated freeze after freeze in April. The only plants that seemed to struggle where Acer palmatum and Larix where they actually experienced dieback.

After that experience I'm more relaxed with wanting to protect plants from early season freezes. It got down to the low to upper 20s ten plus times that spring. It never dipped to the teens...not sure if the damage would be different at that point.


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

Right now, it sure looks ugly but I just took a close look and am seeing a bunch of new buds forming. That's nice to see as I wasn't sure if I'd see less foliage or same as last year.

Interestingly, the MC-BC hybrids do not leaf out early and appear to be more like BC as far as timing when to start growing but more like MC for staying green and red much longer into the winter.


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

its working off stored energy .. as obviously.. it must.. since it lost all its leaves ...

but there is only so much to lose ..

i would not be surprised.. that your annual growth.. might be a bit lesser ...especially if it happens a second time ..

e.g. you might note.. that last its leader grew one foot ... [by bark observation] .... and this year.. maybe 9 inches.. i dont know ..

thats just one way to gauge if there was any impact ...

leaf-wise.. it should leaf out properly ....

of course any type of fert'ing has the potential to hinder that observation ... and begs the question of whether it is advantageous.. to fert a stressed tree ...

ken


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

Ken,

The weather forecast isn't showing any very cold weather so I think I'm safe (knocking on wood). This one grew over 3 feet in its first year and seeing that it's more established, i'm hoping it'd be closer to 4 ft of growth as long as it gets water in any forms regularly. We'll see how that turns out by October. I read trees store build up reserves if fertilized during fall but I'm more into improving soil biology than using lots of synthetic fertilizers.


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

Other taxodium trees are starting to wake up. On this MC, it still looks ugly with brown needles. I'm not seeing any new buds so far. Still hoping not to end up with bare spots on it.


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

It will recover, and quickly. If it isn't dead (and it isn't) when it gets warmer it will start to grow from wherever it has healthy buds and grow vigorously. You will have a long hot growing season in texas which it is perfectly adapted for. Water it. Fertilize it. They are tough fast growing trees.


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

I'm just jealous because we have NOTHING growing yet...except the Silver Maples (and soon the Red Maples) and Witch Hazel blooming. We're on our way to possibly one of the coldest Marches on record here. Running about 6 degrees below normal so far.


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

Lou - how's your Montezuma looking? Any new growth yet?

We finally shifted to spring. It's wet, wet, wet the next 24 hours or so and in the cool 50s, but highs the rest of the week are expected to be between 60 and 70, with no freezes and mostly sunny until late week. Witch hazel, crocus, daffodil blooming. Some green buds popping on some roadside understory plants.


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

Hairmetal,

It's finally forming new buds on the bare part of branches so it should look fuller in a couple weeks. It didn't look good for the past couple weeks with that much brown needles.

What I really want is wet, wet, wet week to fill up the lakes around here otherwise we'd get hit with stage 3 watering restriction... It's been too long... Oct 31 was the last time we've gotten good amount of rainfall.


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

Wow. After looking that previous pictures, it's looking much fuller now.


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

Looks good. Have you been getting decent rain as well?


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

Yes, we are finally getting decent rainfall for the past couple months. We got hit by powerful thunderstorm last week (70-90 MPH). What a mess but I got 3.5" of rain out of it so I'm not complaining!


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RE: Montezuma cypress got zapped by hard freeze.

looking good.Got a few T mucronatum here they are starting to fill out they can brown a bit in the winter.


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