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John Fulton

John Fulton
Former County Extension Director

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In The Backyard

Horticulture columns and tips done on a timely basis

Silver Lining?

Posted by John Fulton -

Many wonder if there is a silver lining to the recent freeze. You may have to look long and hard, but surely there is something. Some tulips are now developing, especially those that came out later and still had the flower buds well protected. If the flowers are laying flat or are drooping, that usually means dead tissue in the stem area.

The best scenarioI can think of is nuisance fruit removal. Odds are very good that many trees will bear little, if any, fruit. That's bad for peaches and apples, but can be good for those crabapples around the school. There's something about kids and throwing crabapples. And of course, there are the sweet gums. It will be interesting to see how many of the gum flowers survived, as they were just emerging at the beginning of the cold snap. Destroyed flowers mean no fruit. And, no fruit means no gum balls in the case of sweet gums.

Another positive potential is the killing of germinating crabgrass seed. Germinating seeds that are frozen are basically goners.

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