Oh Mother Nature, you sneaky fiend! I’m not sure how to interpret this latest bit of tomfoolery- it feels rather spiteful what with everything else going on in the world. Then again, maybe it is just a distraction to give our minds something else to fret over for a day or two. Who knows, but I can say that this is quickly becoming a pattern of which I do not approve. Facebook reminded me that April 11, 2019 was a near copy for today. Heavy, wet snow just in time for Easter.
Never let anyone tell you the weather in the Midwest is anything but fickle.
We were given plenty of notice by the local weather folks, so I was able to go out and cover up a few key plants. Not for fear of the cold, but rather the 10-16″ of heavy, wet snow that was sure to crush or break tender new growth. I only guarded the rhubarb (it IS my favorite), the Persian Fritilaries (Fritilaria persica, making a comeback after a year in hiding), the two Kniphofia (which is a bit of a shot in the dark because I’m not yet sure they are coming back at all), ‘Woodstock’ Hyacinth (because they are juuuust about to bloom and I’d hate to see those crushed), and one delicate, precious ‘Black Barlow’ Columbine. Everything else has to fend for itself.
I used some frost blankets on the contents of the greenhouse. There is no room for them in the house, so the heater and some strategically placed blankets will have to do as temperatures bottom out over night.
The blessing is that while we did get a lot of snow, it wasn’t anywhere near the totals that were being bandied about. Probably close to 6 or 8 inches and it was heavy and wet, but I’m profoundly happy that there isn’t more. Here’s hoping for a fast melt. The biggest concern is the coming super low overnight temperatures. We’re talking 3 consecutive nights in the teens (15-18F). Today I’ll have to decide if we try to batten down the hatches and ride out the dangerously low temps in the greenhouse or schlep everything back into the house for a few nights. (Let’s be honest, after all those months of work growing those plants, it would be utterly foolish to get cavalier about them now.)
Big changes are on the way at work (furloughs and reductions in hours, all that jazz) so with any luck the weather will improve. I figure if I can’t actually work, the least I can do is tick off every item on the Garden’s To Do list. I’ll need the snow to be gone and the temperatures to warm up to have any hope.
I do hope your holiday weekend was far, far less snowy than ours. Be safe, wash your hands, wear your masks out of the house, and stay healthy!