Pity trees and shrubbery - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Pity trees and shrubbery

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After this month of subfreezing temperatures, ice, and snow, it's nice to dream about flowering trees and the green growth that comes with Spring. Not wanting to burst that bubble, but be prepared to see some hardcore damage on trees and shrubbery in the weeks ahead.

Interestingly enough, the damage was not done in this week's ice and snow, but earlier in January when the area first saw temperatures in the single digits. Martin Bachtel is a tree and shrubbery specialist at Hanna's Garden Shop in Birmingham. Bachtel said,"trees in this zone typically are fine to 10 degrees. Below that, there is a real risk of significant damage." Bachtel predicts split bark on tree trunks and less flowering on trees such as dogwoods. Homeowners will first spot damage on new growth and then on the older part of the plant.

As for this week's ice and snow, Bachtel says that's not really a problem. Thursday, as temperatures rose, the ice and snow melted, providing water for the plants. Trees and shrubbery located next to the house may fare better in all of this. They have some protection from the elements and benefit from heat radiating from the structure. 

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