ice damage

Preventing Ice Damage to Your Plants

Dan This Land of Ours

ice damage

Cathy Isom has a few helpful suggestions for you about how to prevent ice damage for your plants.  That’s coming up on This Land of Ours. 

Preventing Ice Damage to Your Plants

It’s easy to forget about your outdoor plants during the winter when everything is cold and nothing is growing – that is until spring arrives and you can see the damage ice has done to your garden.

It may seem inevitable, but ice damage is avoidable. The majority of it occurs when temperatures fluctuate and plants crack when ice thaws and re-freezes. If you live in an area where the temperature stays consistent – even if it’s freezing cold – ice on plants isn’t as much of a problem unless it builds up too much. Here’s how to avoid it.

The first step to preventing ice damage to plants is to choose the right ones in the first place.  If you have plants that are susceptible to damage but are appropriate to your zone, you’ll need to give them some protection during the winter.

During the winter, cover small, more delicate plants with burlap.  Don’t allow the burlap sack to lay on the plant. The best way to stop this happening is to hammer stakes into the ground. Lay the burlap sack over the plant, pull it tight and tie it to the stakes. You can also hold the sack in place with rocks.

Another helpful method for preventing ice damage to plants, is to use a well-balanced fertilizer that’s not excessive in nitrogen, and stop feeding six weeks before the first expected frost to allow the plants to harden off.

Stake Trees if ice build-up on plants is not severe, sometimes staking a plant is enough to keep it safe until you clear it of ice. Just remember to remove it as soon as you can.

Give your plants a blanket of protection with mulch, which keeps the soil a little bit warmer, protecting the roots of the plant outside in winter.

I’m Cathy Isom…