Monday, May 13, 2013

Possible FreezeTonight

Mother's Day was nice, and with the several days that brought some rain, everything looks good.

Now today it got cold. It is only in the mid 50s with a chilly breeze. The Basket of Gold plants look warm and yellow, with the red smokebush leafing out behind.

But it is a cold one, and the prediction for tonight is for mid 30s.

That's too close to freezing. I will need to cover up the zinnia seedlings, the new choca mocha cosmos and the nicotiana. And three little angelonias. The dahlias and black eyed susan vines and salvia in pots will need to come in. Sheesh. It's a lot. Oh, and there are red salvia seedlings out in the garden too.
(update on Tuesday morning: no freeze. It only got to 39 F briefly, but precautions had been taken and everything vulnerable had been covered.)
In the cool weather today I took out the leftmost winterberry holly that had been crowding the bayberry and the hemlock. It opens up the area a lot. Boy does the bayberry look awful, but I know it will green up at the end of May -- it's always such a late one!

I was thinking the New Jersey tea plants were awfully late too. They still look like sticks. But when I look closer I see that one is leafing out from the roots a little bit, the other is not at all. It should not look so completely bare in mid May, even if it is a late one to come out.

Everything is a week or more behind last year's very warm spring, but this ceanothus does not look good. It was fully in leaf by May 18 last year. It is now the 13th and very bare. I don't think it is going to come back from the roots.

I thought the two gaura in the front walk were no shows, but they are leafing out. They are late ones too. I spent some time trimming the heaths today, and cleaning out some of the crowding (I'm looking at you, Angelina sedum) in that strip.

I cut back the Frosty Morn sedums for more compact growth (the variegation is all gone) and there were aphids all over the new growth, eew.

And the sourwood is finally putting on leaves! The black gums too --- they are very slow. You can't even see the sourwood on the right here, it is just a brown stick, but there are little leaves coming out.

Scilla are blooming, but they are such a moody gray-lavender and they don't show from afar. Plus they are overtopped by columbines and nepeta in the Birch Garden. I really need to move them or take them out.

All four clematis vines are putting on height: the new Niobe is the smallest under the Austrian pine, the Jackmanii is filling out the iron tuteur, the viticella Alba Luxurians is rising, and here is Henryi:

Much progress, many things are growing and blooming but this cool spring, and dry period have held a lot back.