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Polar Vortex 2021

Alana8aSC
28 days ago

Not sure how true it is, but my husband said we are having one next week. Wanted to give everyone a heads up.

Comments (187)

  • Sheila z8a Rogue Valley OR
    14 days ago

    Magpie, Fru Dagmar is also great. It has beautiful hips too. It is bushy low and spreading, in contrast to Therese Bugnet's upright vase shape. Therese repeats constantly here, but in Alaska not so much with the shorter season and less intense sun. Fru is a repeater and should be in front.

  • Vaporvac Z6-OhioRiverValley
    14 days ago

    I'm so glad to see there is light at the end of the tunnel for you people. Bad weather is bad no matter I sometimes think. My dad had a medical emergency last night and due to the ice storm they were not able to get into his private Dr. So they had to call out the city to plow and put down sand so the emergency vehicle could drive in. They're used to snow but this just happened at the wrong time so one just never knows.

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  • Kitty6aNY
    14 days ago

    Hi, Rekha,

    I am glad you had power for a few hours today. God bless you!

  • Kitty6aNY
    14 days ago

    Build a bon fire! Any fireplaces to light up?

  • Diane Brakefield
    14 days ago

    I hope your father is OK, Vapor. That sounds like a stressful mess to deal with on top of the medical emergency. Diane

  • sultry_jasmine_nights (Florida 9a)
    14 days ago
    last modified: 14 days ago

    Vapor, that is scary. I hope he is okay!

    I think the cold and stress is really pushing people and animals/pets to their limits. I hope all this lets up soon!


    Rehka, sorry to hear about your tropicals. I hope some will make it somehow.


    Alameda, It sounds like the weather is giving you a workout but you have the right attitude. It makes it double hard when you have a lot of animals to care for too.

    I love hearing your stories of your farm animals! They are such a blessing.

  • Kristine LeGault 8a pnw
    14 days ago

    Vap, how is your Dad ? A medical issue made even more stressful due to weather. I will be praying for a speedy recovery.

  • jc_7a_MiddleTN
    14 days ago

    I really wish pictures could capture how beautiful this is.

    of course, we never lost power so maybe my perspective is off.

    Still coming down very hard.


  • summersrhythm_z6a
    14 days ago

    Vap, hope your dad is Ok now. It’s hard when parents are so far away. I hope you have family members near your dad, they could help out.

  • joeywyomingz4b
    14 days ago

    Vaporvac sending prayers for your dad, hope he is doing better today.

  • summersrhythm_z6a
    14 days ago

    Jc, a lovely photo! Where are your footprints in the snow? Did you take the photo from your window? :-)

  • jc_7a_MiddleTN
    13 days ago
    last modified: 13 days ago

    Very easily the most snow I’ve ever seen.





    @summersrhythm_z6a ha I’ll get out there sometime today!

    One is from the window and the other I actually went outside and stood on the covered porch.

  • Rekha A 9a Houston area
    13 days ago

    Vapor, hope your dad is ok...

  • joeywyomingz4b
    13 days ago

    And this is the reason people in Wyoming drive pickup trucks!


  • summersrhythm_z6a
    13 days ago

    I think Vap went to ME to see her dad. That's a long trip from OH to ME. Have a safe trip!


  • summersrhythm_z6a
    13 days ago
    last modified: 13 days ago

    JC, I am glad you have moved from the window to the porch! :-) Lovely photos!

  • summersrhythm_z6a
    13 days ago

    Joey, nice bull bar! I don't see any footprints in your window photo, haven't been out? :-)

  • Vaporvac Z6-OhioRiverValley
    13 days ago

    Thank you everyone for your well wishes! I cannot tell you what this means. My dad seems to be recuperating from a hypertensive event. So far it looks like no permanent damage done. He is still in the hospital and I'm waiting to hear from my stepmom of anything further. If not for covid-19 I would be on the road now, but my DH cannot risk it until fully vaccinated. Plus I'm not sure how much they would allow us in to see him. This was so scary. I've never prayed so much in my life. I'm hoping that I will get the go-ahead to talk to him.

  • Sheila z8a Rogue Valley OR
    13 days ago

    We are feeling for you Vapor. Best wishes for your Dad's recovery.

  • joeywyomingz4b
    13 days ago

    Vaporvac I'm glad to hear your dad is better!


    Summers I got a photo in the early morning before the boys went out to shovel, they have pathways cleared and snowmen built now.

  • summersrhythm_z6a
    13 days ago

    Hope your dad will be home soon. Glad to hear there is no permanent damage.

  • Mischievous Magpie
    13 days ago

    Vapor, it's likely that there are lots of limitations for visitors right now, if they're even allowed.. My husband just spent a week in the hospital and they only allowed one person per day, couldn't bring our kids since they're both under 18, and once I had symptoms I couldn't visit him at all. I know it's so hard not to be able to go visit a loved one right now when they're in the hospital, but know that your dad is in good hands and he knows you love him. Try to take care of yourself during this time.

  • MiGreenThumb (Z5b S.Michigan/Sunset 41) Elevation: 1,029 feet
    8 days ago

    Looking around outside today before work it's hard to believe it's nearly 50° and sunny whereas a week ago we were facing temperatures around -10 overnight.

    I can tell I have some damaged canes on roses that will have to be cut off due to die back but I also see others that still look plenty greens so far.

    I also noticed my Iris reticulata and daffodils are already coming up on the south side of the house I have a sneaking suspicion they got started before our last blast of cold and snow.

    Fear not for spring and mild weather are on the way!

    Steven

  • Rekha A 9a Houston area
    8 days ago
    last modified: 8 days ago

    We had a high of 77 yesterday and today is 79. I'll be so mad if we get a freeze again this spring!

  • Katherine OK zone 7b
    8 days ago

    Anybody else out doing garden clean up and crying because you thought you’d do a couple of test cuts on some roses that looked pretty bad and ended up pruning them all the way to the ground because there was no green cambium or creamy white pith in sight? No? Just me? My garden is in my front yard and I look like a crazy person. I’m learning some hard lessons early this year, although I’m not quite sure what the lesson IS yet, exactly.

  • alameda/zone 8/East Texas
    8 days ago

    Vap, hope your dad continues to improve. My parents and lovely stepmother are all gone now.....wish I had them here to care for.


    I just got an email from the Antique Rose Emporium that had words of comfort:

    "Many plants such as roses and perennials look worse than they really are. Patience will pay off as many of these plants will come back beautifully in the coming weeks. Wait for new growth to emerge and pruning will be made obvious in supporting and cleaning these plants."


    Guess being patient and waiting to prune will show what will live and what wont. I have never had an experience like this with plants. Goes to show.......as a gardener, you learn something new all time time! I almost put on a short sleeved shirt today, it was that warm. Last week........everything covered in ice. Hope spring is here to stay this time! That groundhog wasnt kidding when he said winter wasnt over!

    Judith

  • Kitty6aNY
    8 days ago
    last modified: 8 days ago

    Rekha, Katherine, , Alameda and Friend who made it through this cold weather, and to those of us still waiting fir winter to end:


    Roses are pretty hardy, many of them. Although, they may need pruned back, it’s amazing all the beautiful new growth you will soon see, rebirth, in warm weather and it will all be pretty and NEW!


    Vap,

    How is your dad? Is he improving. Much love and my prayers are with you and him.


    Friends,

    In this NY cold 6A zone I look out still w/snow covered roses but it’s warming to 50 F tomorrow and starting to melt! YEA!!!!!!!!!!!



    , I see 65+ roses to prune in April, oh, my. Many will trim back to 6 inches. However, I’m sooooo excited! When the new growth comes.... the splendor of aromatic blooms will fill my gardens and your too, once more.

    And with our rose orders coming...I have 39 roses to plant...... new birth of roses will be profuse from your gardens to mine! It’s going to be spectacular!


    Time to plan your favorite soil amendment, and finish or start your new garden designs! Order new roses and other flowers. We are going to have a fabulous spring.... We can all get out and bury our hands in the dirt and absorb the wonderful sun while being a part of nurturing rebirth and new birth into our gardens! Great therapy! Oh, I’m so ready! How about you?


    Seeing Migreenthumb’s bulbs,

    emerge from the ground is heavenly! Soon we will all enjoy seeing gardens burst w/bulbs and then more roses.... delicate colorful blossoms w/ the tranquil aromas of cloves, citrus, myrrh, old garden rose scents and more...


    Oh, the joy of spring! The warmth is coming!!

  • Katherine OK zone 7b
    8 days ago

    Alameda and Kitty, I needed that today. Thank you.

  • alameda/zone 8/East Texas
    8 days ago

    Kitty, I sure needed that too! I have a question for those of you in cold climates. Dont know as I have ever had to prune my roses back to 6" - that sounds like pruning them to nubs! I have a hard time visualizing them coming back from that......I have a lot of smaller babies in pots that are small - if I have to prune those back short, will they really come back and be bushy, grow and bloom? Remember, I am 2 hours from Houston and have never seen my plants go through anything like this! I am agonizing over my beautiful daylilies too........their gorgeous green foliage that was so beautiful is now a soggy mess. I was told to trim them back, or not. I am trimming them back and hoping to see new growth. I think people up north take all this in stride, just as we do the heat of summer. All my rose friends here are about to have nervous breakdowns.........maybe we will be pleasantly surprised if the roses bounce back.

    Judith

  • joeywyomingz4b
    8 days ago

    Judith if it helps any, I have a couple roses that started from ground level last spring and were easily 4+ feet tall by the time the Labor Day storm shut them down.

  • alameda/zone 8/East Texas
    8 days ago

    Thats good to know Joey! Do you do extra feeding to give roses that have to be pruned back severely? What is your fertilizer routine? Wonder if alfalfa tea would help jump start these roses in March when it warms up and they start growing? I use alfalfa pellets but have not tried the tea.

  • needmoremulch
    8 days ago

    It is killing me not to start pruning, but I am trying to resist. Really weird things going out there in garden, like Kordes' Fire Opal looking much worse than the China Archduke Charles 8 ft away. I am the most scared about my teas. Sigh.

  • Sheila z8a Rogue Valley OR
    8 days ago

    Where are you located, needmore?

  • needmoremulch
    8 days ago

    North of Houston. We hit 5 or 6 one night. It was bad.

  • Rekha A 9a Houston area
    8 days ago

    It got pretty bad in the Houston area especially with power loss...we were between 35 to.40 inside the house and my poor elderly parents were suffering. I lost my fish in my small pond outside and am fearful for my 15 plus year old citrus. And my Rose's:( . Sigh.

  • joeywyomingz4b
    8 days ago

    Judith I put alfalfa out as the ground is thawing so that it gets soaked in by the snowmelt and then plenty of well composted horse manure (adjusted with charcoal for roses that don't like acidic soil) at regular intervals, every couple of weeks or so. Last year the fish pond weed seemed to really help too. I can't spray chemicals so I try to source local organic options to keep the garden as healthy as possible and get maximum growth on a minimum budget...so I can buy more roses lol.

  • joeywyomingz4b
    8 days ago

    Rekha that sounds dreadful! I hope your parents are able to get somewhere they can have heat.

  • Sheila z8a Rogue Valley OR
    8 days ago

    That is absolutely shocking that you have to deal with all this in the Houston area. Really hoping for the best for the Teas needmore and all you people too.

  • Ashley Smith zone 5a
    7 days ago

    Yeah im sorry too what you all are dealing with!


    I was outside checking my roses yesterday and I'm thrilled to see some greenish canes on most of them! It looks like Princess Charlene weathered -24F tho there will be a lot to prune off.



  • needmoremulch
    3 days ago

    Update - Old Blush and Mutabilis look great. Almost no die back at all. Star of the Republic has literally no die back and is leafing out (other Pioneer roses from ARE also look good). Lady of Shalott and Molineux had to be cut back by about 2/3, but Pat Austin looks really good so far. I had to cut some Kordes back to 6-12 inches, which is surprising - South Africa, Fire Opal, Jolie Veranda, and Westerland (!!!). Tangerine Skies, Plum Perfect, and Savanah look better but will need a bit of cutting back. I am still waiting on the teas. I have acouple.of beds that I haven't even looked at yet. Kinda scared.

  • Kitty6aNY
    15 hours ago
    last modified: 15 hours ago

    Alameda, Rekha, Needmoremulch and Friends,

    No worries! Most of your roses and plants will all spring into rebirth after you prune them as long as you see healthy roots and even one green cane. Dead Lilly leaves is normal and the bulbs will grow all new leaves. and flowers.

    My roses have some black canes but all green canes on lower parts. My lillies have all dead leaves. I will remove all dead canes and leaves in preparation for all new rebirth!

    Check your roses and plants for what zone they are meant to live in. Many roses and plants like bulbs are zone 5 and 6 and they are created to weather temperatures of zero or less.

    For spring gardening to bring on the new rebirth of your gardens... trim away all dead leaves, canes, flowers from your plants. Remove all dead leaves from the ground of garden beds, too. Clean up like I do every spring n NY on a warm day when you know there is no more chance of frost. .Then sprinkle new enriched compost, soil , mulch and some “normal amounts of fertilizer “on your rose and flower garden beds. Perfect!

    If you watch a rose pruning video it usually shows pruning back to 6 inches or a foot with leaving only 4-6 canes. It will look like a bare root rose when you purchase them. Watch a video to do it properly. In Los Angeles , CA and Portland , OR where I used to live and garden roses, I used to prune all my roses back that far every fall. Now in NY after cold winter I do the spring pruning and clean all dead lilies and plants leaves out of garden. The bulbs in the ground (lillies and such) will grow all new leaves and flowers. It is nice to prune off all the dead canes to 6-12 inches because it sends up beautiful fresh new growth. It was a way of getting rid of “dried rose thorns on old canes and any growth I didn’t like.” Then it is like having “brand new roses each spring!” You will love your new plants and gardens as they flourish again.

    However, you may wish to only prune back the canes of your rose that are black If you so desire. However, keep in mind that pruning is normal to roses in all climates and they love growing new canes!!! A rosarian in Hawaii prunes his roses back too as they grow very vigorously all year around. It is a way to control the growth of your roses and help them to send up new growth-normalcy. If I lived in Texas I would prune back heavily once each year, anyway.

    After pruning and new preparation of your soil it will be a few weeks and you will see beautiful new red leaves and canes on your roses. New Leaves will be sprouting all over your gardens. In 1-2 months you will see spectacular new growth everywhere and your gardens will look more beautiful than ever!


    Have fun! This is an exciting time for rebirth!

    I am excited to hear how your pruning and how your clean up progresses. And share photos of your gardens as they grow with more vigor than ever into “all new garden’s this year!”

  • alameda/zone 8/East Texas
    14 hours ago

    Thank you Kitty for your post! I visited a rose friend yesterday and his look as bad as mine - we are both despairing. I try not to look at them every day as its too depressing. We have had a couple of days of colder days, lows above freezing but I think now that has passed and we are going to have warmer temps so hopefully they will start growing. I think I may now start pruning and will just prune them way back like you suggested. I recall pruning a Knockout way back because it was in my way and it did grow back beautifully. I just dont see many green canes - they mostly look brown and dead. Some of the more viable looking canes are a dark brown color, but after reading your post, am just going to start pruning them and see what happens. I have Mills Magic Rose Mix, and use some other organics, and will top dress them and hope for the best. The Buck roses and, surprisingly to me, most of the David Austins have green canes.


    Would watering with root stimulator help any? How about fish emulsion? I use alfalfa pellets also. I do feel I am going to lose some potted ones......but I put the ones I cannot replace in my greenhouse and they are fine. Trying to look at the bright side, when I buy roses this spring I can use the excuse I am replacing the ones that died, not just adding to the collection ha ha!

  • Rekha A 9a Houston area
    14 hours ago

    I have a few Roses that have no green canes...these are the new grafted Roses planted in the fall. Most of my own root look ok, dead canes but some green lower.

  • Kitty6aNY
    8 hours ago

    Sometimes the roots are good where they meet at the stem that is hardened over brown all the time. I would wait a month after pruning and even if needed prune back to the stem. They may send out all new canes-the ones with no green canes May sprout anew.


    If it’s any consolation, I started 7 new rose gardens in my life. Each time I just moved and didn’t bother to take them with me. Each garden was 30-50 roses. And now starting over on my 7th property with all new roses-it’s like a very long Christmas celebration!!! I seem to order a lot of new kinds of roses each time-great excuses to enjoy new roses. It’s been sooooo much fun!! And now I have the best roses I have ever had! My favorites!


    For ordering roses... start looking now if you can as tgey are selling out at nurseries. However, local nurseries may just start selling them. And.....


    HEIRLOOM ROSES sells them all year around.


    And NORTHERN ROSARIUM will have a whole new stock of roses they told me to sell from MAY-OCT.


    If you are hunting for a favorite rose , CALL ALL THE NURSERIES, they may have it and put it back in stock just for you. I do that sometime.


  • Kitty6aNY
    8 hours ago

    Alameda,

    Your ideas to use fish E. or root hormones may work. Normal fertilizers and not over fertilizing works best. I definitely would give the garden new enriched soil (cow manure, or compost or organic Miracle Gro soil is what I do. put new soil at least around the roses... it really boasts growth!


    I have not tried root hormone.


    vaporvac, what do you think?

  • alameda/zone 8/East Texas
    8 hours ago

    It was a beautiful day today, sunny and 66. I started looking at roses, I can now start seeing some green leaves! It was disheartening to have to cut back to 2-3" and these pruned roses look like nubs BUT there is life!! I had thought High Sheriff from Heirloom was gone, but there is green - also on others that had looked dead. I didnt remotely get to everything and I think there are going to be some potted hybrid teas, like Scentuous that I pruned, that look totally dead, no sign of life, but I can get that rose again at Chamblees [and I WILL be going!] so think if anything is totally dead [Chicago Peace doesnt look good at all, but this is easy to get] I think I can get back what I lose. I was thankfully smart enough to put small ones in pots that I cant replace [Cl. Houston Levee, a mini apricot climber, Marie Curie, The Prince/that I have babied from Freedom Gardens, etc.] in the greenhouse and they are doing great.


    It is just hard for me to comprehend that these roses I have cut back to the nub even though they show green, that they will grow and become "real" roses again, but I am taking Kitty's word for it and have hope. My much loved Palatine climber Barock had to be cut back to a few inches, but its alive. So sad, it had huge thick canes and it was due to "leap" this year. Guess we will have to regress to the "creep" stage this y ear. Auguste Luise is cut down but its alive, matter of fact, all my Palatine roses appear to still be alive. Was happy to see most of the Austins are putting out. Mary Rose appeared especially hardy. Alychemist and Vielchenblau didnt miss a beat but I am worried about my big teas like Mrs. BR Cant, Mme. Berkeley, Mon. Tillier. But I can replace.....


    Things look pretty sad.......I look at my raised bed by my garden cottage and can barely see the roses.......but am taking heart that with warm sun, some rain, some organics and mulch that I will start seeing some growth. Noticed my bridal wreath has tiny green leaves......I so appreciate all the words of encouragement from northern rose growers....


    The last of the really cold temps look to be gone now......so can look forward to the start of spring and rejuvenation!

    Judith

  • Sheila z8a Rogue Valley OR
    7 hours ago

    Judith, hang in there. I lived in Alaska 33 years and am familiar with cold. Things may regrow from the roots for you through March I am sure. Give them another month. So sad they have to grow new tops. Here, some of mine have a top but no roots because of the gophers.

    You will be happily surprised I hope. I am especially pulling for your Teas.

  • Kitty6aNY
    7 hours ago

    Judith, and Friends,


    Ok... we need some rejuvenation of spirits! ! Get our your batteries and charge them up to move forward with exquisite garden hopes and plans! Grateful for every green form of life bursting from the ground! How many live plants can you be grateful for?


    When you are given a bunch of lemons make lemonade!


    Start making your wish list for new roses. I always keep a wish list to look at and photos to give me something to look forward to!


    When my garden is pruned and looks all barren I grow bulbs all around them or flowers until the roses grow. What could you put in your garden’s to give it new zest while it rejuvenates itself? Garden decorations???


    How can we spice up these Texas gardens, people? Add some statues, fake flower arrangements, lawn furniture, plastic bows, blooming bulbs, blooming bushes? What is sold right now at the grocery store floral section or garden centers right now? Some new pots? It’s a wonderland of possibilities!


    My garden has 70ish brown and green roses w/ canes w/ dead leaves. Not lovely! All flowers look dead (they are dormant) next to the roses. My new grass is matted and a little discolored due to snow pushing it down. Talk about dreary! It was all brand new before winter. But I have BIG PLANS! And IM EXCITED! Can’t wait to prune them, clean up, and put out new amended soil . And newly plant 40 roses I ordered. Then weed/feed/seed my lawn so it will all look brand new again. And I have lots of new plans... a new cherry tree, clematis to plant, veg gardening.... oh, I can’t wait. In one month after clean up it should start looking lovely! Thete is nothing more wonderful than a NEW GARDEN!!!!!


    Your garden will look lovely too! ....You are creative and an amazing Gsrdener. You will find ways to make it beautiful! Go fo it!

  • seil zone 6b MI
    7 hours ago

    Please give them time. They took a shock and now need some down time to recover. Don't be in any rush to prune anything until you start to see some new growth out there. That may take a couple of weeks for them. We cold climaters go through this every year. Many times a rose looks dead but then with time starts to grow. But it takes a longer period of warm weather than just a few days to a week. Patience is all that's needed now.

    I would not suggest root stimulator or fertilizer at this point. If the roots are still a bit inactive from the cold it could burn them. And they won't be able to use it yet anyway. Once they begin to grow you know you have active roots and you can feed them tehn.

  • Kitty6aNY
    5 hours ago

    Thanks , Sell. Great advise.


    it is 40 degrees in my area daily now and in 20s at night. In April it will be in 60s and finally no freezing nights. Shall I wait to see growth before pruning , also?


    I have lived in NY for a few years but I am only this year learning better how to care fir my roses.