Unfortunately, in winter, too low temperatures do not spare certain plants. Due to the strong cold, they can easily freeze. And it is a spectacle of desolation. It is truly sad to see them like this, lifeless. But rest assured, despite the doom, all is not necessarily lost. Seasoned gardeners have effective ways to save cold-stricken plants. How to protect them from freezing or prevent them from dying if they are already frozen? Here are all the solutions to implement according to the advice of Olivier Le Meur, gardener in Saint-Brieuc.
If the plant has a thin layer of frost on the leaves, you don’t have to worry. According to professional gardeners, this type of layer starts to melt as soon as temperatures start to rise slightly. However, if the flower has a constant layer of frost or its leaves have turned brown, the cold damage is greater. How to save this frozen plant? The secret is in rehydration. Keep in mind that outdoor plants deeply affected by cold temperatures are unlikely to recover. They should be removed at the beginning of the spring season. However, that does not mean they are dead. Wait for the return of spring to be sure!
Above all, be sure to water the frozen plant often enough for it to absorb the water it lacks due to frost. Gardeners recommend watering affected flowers in the early hours of the day when temperatures are highest. Otherwise, hydration won’t help, because the water can refreeze! To avoid this problem, sprinkle water over the soil to create a protective layer against cold temperatures. The ideal, if possible, is to move the plant to a place protected from the cold.
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Most frost damage doesn’t appear until spring when new growth emerges. If you find that the branches of trees and bushes have turned brown or even black and dried up, this is a bad omen. If the leaf tips dry out first before the entire leaf is affected, then frozen buds or flowers should be removed.
Keep in mind that young shoots are the most sensitive to frost and therefore tend to freeze first. To tell if the buds are still viable, even if they appear brown and dry in spring (for example, in the case of hydrangeas), carefully scrape the bark. If green tissue is visible below, then the branch is intact and its flowers can be saved.
When to prune a plant that has frozen?
The ideal time to prune cold-damaged plants, including trees and shrubs, is in early spring, when the plant is coming out of dormancy. This will allow you to better observe the damage and identify which branches to keep or remove. Usually at this point it is possible to detect if the branch is salvageable or if it should be deleted. Either way, do not remove more than one-third of the limbs when pruning cold-stricken trees or shrubs. If more pruning is necessary, wait until the following spring.
Are your plants not growing as expected? Are they taking too long to grow or do you feel a sudden slowdown? They may require more specific care to flourish better and develop normally. First of all, you have to make sure that they are not diseased or infected by fungi. If so, you need to address the issue as soon as possible to prevent them from dying.
What promotes good growth? A set of factors must be combined: optimal conditions of light, nutrients, humidity, temperature, etc. Therefore, it is necessary to know the specific care of each species, since not all plants have the same needs. They still need to be closely monitored as often as possible for symptoms such as sunburn, root clogging, or pest diseases. When you find that your growth is stunted, it’s normal to worry about your plants and take extra care to help them stay healthy. Some solutions can make the difference: a contribution of rich and natural fertilizer, drainage of the substrate, pruning the plant if necessary, a greater contribution of natural light, watering, more optimal temperature conditions or even a transplant. .
If the damage seems minor, you can prune off the damaged branches and repair the bark. Young trees can take quite a bit of damage, but it is still possible to save them. According to experts, the golden rule is to wait eight weeks later, around spring, to identify the branches that are growing back and those that are already dead. If you feel you don’t have enough gardening skills, hire a specialist to repair your tree. At your level, you can still remove heavily damaged small branches.
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For the more experienced, these are the steps to follow:
- To repair the crust, use a knife or scissors to smooth the edges of the crust. This will eliminate hiding places for insects and help protect the fragile layer below the bark.
- Finally, you should also remove dead and broken branches with the right tools. Be sure to do this carefully so you don’t leave any bits of branch behind. Be careful not to remove the inner foliage or the top of the tree.
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