Some damage to trees & Shrubs

Damaged tree after snow

At the beginning of February, we had a few days of heavy snow that caused some damage to trees and shrubs in the garden. The large acacia tree, native to Australia in the centre of the garden has delicate branches which were unfortunately damaged during this bad weather and parts of the tree have been removed, but is coming up to flower in Spring. This tree is particularly popular with the greenfinch, a tame bird that often takes pollen or seeds from its branches and at times sings in the tree its delightful long twittering notes & trills.

The snow also covered most of Greece, Turkey and some of the Aegean islands, while in Athens the thickness of the snow reached about 80-85 cm and residents were advised to stay at home. An extreme snowstorm caused road disruption in the Capital leaving people to abandon their cars and walk home or take public transport.

tree in centre crushed by snow
village with heavy snow

A few pelargoniums have also been weakened a little in the harsh weather, Pelargonium vitifolium which is quite a tough plant has drooping leaves, I have given it a good dose of compost and also recycled organic matter (leaves, food scraps etc) to enrich the soil.
Pelargonium quercifolium was protected by the large rosemary bushes in the garden which covers most of this plant, apart from a few long branches so it wasn’t affected that much, also two of the pelargoniums after the snow may have died but it is too early to say for sure, they may hopefully start to produce new leaves again in spring.
Pelargonium hispidum & P . radens were sheltered by a wall & other plants, and so should began to recover in Spring.
The only plant that is in bloom at the moment is the rose, a delicate pink shade that hasn’t stopped most of the year, a stem has been made into an arch over the steps to the garden.
It is now slowly getting warmer with longer days so this should give more light to the plants which they lack during the winter months

Caring for your pelargoniums in winter

winter-peli-fotolia

 Some pelargoniums can survive short periods of frost or snow but in cooler countries with continual cold weather they can be kept in a greenhouse or conservatory that has good air circulation & lighting. If you are keeping your pelargoniums outdoors it is advisable to cover them with a dome or a fleece when there are signs of frost or snow and to check the weather forecast frequently for signs of cold weather. If your pelargoniums are planted outside in the garden replanting them into pots and taking them indoors or into a greenhouse/conservatory over winter is another alternative.

After the winter months and the coming of Spring with warmer sunny days you can think about gradually reintroducing your plants again into the outdoors during daylight hours,the removal of old leaves, flower stalks and dead branches that have built up over winter with help your plant to develop new growth towards summer which may need to be pruned to create a more compact and bushy appearance over the new year.