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The Good and Bad News About The Freeze Damage To Your Plants.....

By this morning, one day after our 22 degree freeze yesterday morning the injury to some plants was clear.

Ash trees leaves were turning black

Close-Up of Ash Tree Leaves

Virginia Creeper vines were turning black

Iris Flower Stalks were wilted

Black Spined Prickly Pear Pad Buds and Flower Buds were turning black

Oak Tree Leaves were turning black

Grape Vine New Foliage and young fruit clusters were turning black.

The Good News About This Freeze Damage is that it is only temporary. 

If your plants were healthy, strong, and vigorous they should leaf out again in about 2 weeks. So continue to keep the soil around them moist but not wet. Over-watering these freeze damaged plants could result in further damage and even death.

The Bad News About This Freeze was that damage to young developing fruits is irreversible.

This was looking like a great year for fruit production on area trees. The favorable temperatures of the last 30 days resulted in heavy fruit set. The exposure to the freezing temperatures of the last few mornings has damaged the developing fruits. Within hours these young fruits may become discolored

and fall to the ground. Some damaged fruits like those of Peaches, Pears, and Apples may take several days to notice. However, if gently squeeze a damaged pear, peach or apple fruit they will not be firm but will feel soft. A soft fruit is a symptom of freeze injury.

Normally fruit trees only bloom once so so much for this years production. It is interesting that the freezing temperatures do not injure the young leaves but only fruits and flowers.

Photos and Narrative By:
Stephen Sain
Staff Plant Physiologist

Trees That Please Nursery
A Retail and Wholesale Nursery
Serving Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Los Lunas, and Belen
Shade Trees, Fruit Trees, Shrubs, Cacti, Perennials, Gardening Advice


David C. said… least you weren't alone in the freeze, lots of low 20's to Bosque del Apache and Jornada, and frost most everywhere to almost Tucson. Great advice as always.

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