From our Garden to Yours

December 16, 2010   

So much for a mild winter! Though we haven't seen any temperatures as cold as last winter, a few freezing nights may have caused some damage on tender plants. Below are some First Aid tips to help you get your garden back on its feet after our freezes. With a little care and patience, your gardens will be back in bloom in no time.

The great thing about this cold weather is that it makes it feel like Christmas. To make it easy to put the finishing touches on your Christmas decorations, all of Kerby's Christmas cactus, poinsettias and reindeer philodendron are 50% off. Create a beautiful Christmas with lovely holiday plants.

Happy Gardening,
Kim, Joey and Mark

In This Issue
First Aid for
Freeze Damage

All Christmas plants 50% Off

Christmas Cactus, Poinsettias and Reindeer Philodendron only

While Supplies Last

First Aid for Freeze Damage

You know you are a true gardener when you are willing to use your own bed sheets to protect your favorite plants! Even though this winter was predicted to be mild, we've already seen some pretty cold temperatures.  Even with protection, some of your plants were probably damaged in the cold. If you are trying to figure out what to do now, see the tips below. As the first tip says, the best thing to do is to be patient.

1. Be Patient - This is the hardest part of dealing with winter damage. There is no pruning allowed until we are past any risk of frost or freeze. The damaged foliage will serve as an insulating layer if more cold weather comes through. We usually start pruning around the first week of March. The only exception to this rule is if a plant is truly dead or if parts of a plant or palm are rotting. In that case, remove the plant or damaged areas from the garden to avoid spreading disease.

2. Don't Fertilize - Fertilizer may stimulate growth on plants, but if we get cold again that tender new growth will be extremely sensitive to the cold. Even cold hardy plants should not typically be fertilized this time of year. At the start of spring, give everything a good prune and a dose of fertilizer to stimulate a wonderful burst of new growth.

3. Plan your Spring Garden - As you drive around town. you may see a palm or shrub completely frost-burnt in one yard, but look perfectly green in another, even in houses on the same street. Surprisingly, the temperature around the area varies widely depending on a number of factors, including the direction a house faces and the number of trees. Take a look at your own garden and see which spots were warmest and which were coldest. Plan accordingly for the spring and you'll be able to pick which plants are likely to perform best for each spot in your garden.

4. Damaged Palms - For palm trees that sustained some cold damage, the same tip applies - have patience. When you do prune your palm trees, try to prune only damaged fronds off. Over-pruning a palm tree by removing all fronds can hurt its ability to gather nutrients and limit its chances of surviving. Leave as much green as possible, or if there aren't any green fronds, prune about half of the damaged ones off and wait for a new frond to grow in the spring before pruning off the remainder of the old fronds.

5. Protect from Disease - While the freezing temperatures damage the plant, it is usually disease that actually causes them to die. To keep diseases at bay, especially on damaged palms, spray a copper fungicide mixed with a spreader sticker every 10 days or so. This will help the plants fight off disease until they can take over on their own again.


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Kerby's Nursery

2311 S. Parsons Ave.

Seffner, FL 33584
(813) 685-3265

Open Seven Days a Week
Monday - Saturday,  9:00am - 5:00pm
Sunday,  11:00am - 4:00pm