GARDEN PROTECTION: WINTER PROBLEMS
“HATS” FROM SNOW
The best natural insulation for plants is snow. The thicker and looser the blanket of snow, the warmer and more comfortable the trees and shrubs underneath it. But at the same time, heavy snowfalls bring a lot of trouble. During the thaw, under the weight of wet snow and subsequent cold snaps, branches crack or break off due to ice. Wrap the top of a long pole with a soft cloth and carefully knock off the snow “caps” from tall trees (first at the bottom of the crown, then gradually rising up). It is convenient to sweep away snow from low plants with a broom. Place strong supports under thick branches bound by an ice shell.
TIP: If severe frosts are coming, but there is no snow or not enough snow has fallen, insulate the tree trunks of young and heat-loving plants with spruce branches, dry peat, and soil with a layer of at least 10 cm.
Trees of zoned varieties, with proper care, are not afraid of frost, for example, the trunk and branches of apple and pear trees can easily withstand short-term drops to -30...-35 degrees, roots - up to -12 degrees. But if you notice that the bark of fruit trees is peeling off - this is the first sign of frost damage. Gently tap the trunk with a wooden hammer: where the bark has fallen away, the sound is dull. Nail down loose bark with wide-headed nails. In the spring it will grow - and there will be no wound on the tree. If this is not done, in the spring the bark will dry out, crack, crumble, and as a result the plant will suffer serious injury.
In this case, it is important not to hesitate. If possible, doditch for draining melt water from the roots. To prevent condensation from accumulating under the shelter, arrange ventilation (but only if during the day the temperature does not drop below 0 degrees). Replace very wet covering material. And do not rush to clear the ice crust from the branches that forms after the thaw in the frost. If you overdo it, you can damage the plant, and a little ice will serve as additional insulation.
SHIELD FROM THE WIND
Experienced gardeners build wind shields. Simple structures made of wood, polycarbonate and other materials also retain snow well, a large amount of which in the spring will provide the plants with the necessary moisture.
THE SUN IS WARM
Sunburn is perhaps the most common winter problem.. However, in December-January the sun shines, but does not warm yet. But in February-March the chances of getting a burn are high. For prevention, at the end of autumn, gardeners whiten trunks and skeletal branches. If for some reason you did not carry out this procedure, then cover the bollards on the south side with wide boards and secure them with twine. You can remove the protective structure as soon as the buds begin to swell.
© Author: Maria MOROZOVA, agronomist, Smolensk
Previously, it was believed that snow in the garden needed to be trampled down. Now this agricultural technique is viewed differently. It turns out that the denser the snow, the lower its thermal insulation properties, which means that the soil and plant roots are less protected from freezing. Under a dense layer of snow, soil aeration decreases, which leads to damping off of tree bark.
© Author: Alexander Gorny, Cand. of sciences
WHAT YOU CAN AND WHAT YOU CAN’T DO IN THE GARDEN IN WINTER - VIDEO
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