This Winter was a doozy! Here are a few tips to help you bring your garden back to its vibrant best.
The good news is that lots of snow isn’t always bad. Snow actually insulates the roots of plants. When it doesn’t snow and just gets cold, roots are not protected and they run the risk of freezing which will often kill off the plants.
Check for split or broken branches, road salt damage or other damage that could hinder the plant’s recovery. Trim off these damaged areas. In the case of split or broken branches, make a clean cut above the break so that the branch can heal. Make sure to hire a professional arborist to remove larger branches as these can be very unstable and dangerous. If in doubt, take a photo and ask your local garden center’s advice.
A quick way to tell if a plant has actually died or if life still lingers is to check to see if the stems are completely dry and brown inside or if there appears to be a hint of green or white inside which indicates that there’s still sap flowing.
If the stems or branches appear dead, sometimes the plant will shoot again from the roots, so be patient and wait a while before ripping it out of the ground.
Take care when trimming evergreens with foliage damage. Don’t prune the foliage any more than normal as you might end up with bare patches. Instead wait a while as new foliage will likely make an appearance soon.
As the weather warms, prune, water and fertilize. Ask your local garden center about the correct fertilizer and amount of water for your specific plant.
For shrubs and plants that were flattened under the snow, give them time to rejuvenate unless they are actually broken or the roots pulled out.
Make a note to mulch around your plants, shrubs and trees before next winter sets in. This is the best way to avoid damage to the roots.