6:30am

Sat April 20, 2013
Garden Report

Early Spring Gardens Versus Late Winter Snow Storms

Colorado is a region of extremes. A week ago there were severe drought conditions. Then along comes a three day snow storm.

We had finished 2012 almost five inches below normal for precipitation. We were close to two inches down for the first quarter of this year. With the recent snows, we catch up for this year’s moisture.

The folks in the high country have Mud Season every year. This year lowlanders are going to experience Mud Season.

I’m sure the pea and lettuce seeds we had sown will rot before the garden can dry out. That’s ok; we can always plant more seeds. There is still time for cool loving crops to grow during May. We may not have peas for Memorial Day but we may have them for the Solstice. 

I will be interested to see how the plantings we did come through the storm. The parsley plant was frozen in the cold a week or so ago. Now under a fourteen inch blanket of insulation it may come back just fine. The cilantro will be fine, too. I’m not sure the broccoli had a strong enough stem to stand up to the weight of the snow.

The raspberries and perennials we transplanted love this. The soil is kept warm by the snow cover so they may be rooting out. The moisture is a benefit for those tender new roots. 

Luckily shrubs and trees aren’t in leaf. Without leaves they are shedding the snow and drinking up the moisture. When the sun does come out they will burst open with leaves and flowers.

Evergreens have held onto the snow. Most pine and spruce have bent with the weight of the snow. I have checked our and don’t find breakage. Sometimes I do more harm than good when I knock the snow off. I break more branches than the snow.

Broadleaf evergreens are being weighed down. Our Carol Maackie Daphne isn’t going to be pretty after this storm. Holly and euonymus are suffering under the weight, too. I am sure pruning will be necessary.

I wonder after this storm what next extreme weather phenomena will visit our region.

tom@throgmortonplantmanagement.com