Marching Into Spring
(article by Ann Morgan owner of ( L'Annscapes)
The calendar and the view of the outdoors do not always match. Those of who are skiers and plantsmen are very pleased with the exterior appearance as Spring officially appears on our calendars. The deep snow, disliked by so many, is very beneficial to your landscape. It replenishes the groundwater as it melts, helping keep trees watered and in good shape. Your well also depends on this. Snow is Mother Nature's insulation, protecting the above ground portions from drying sun and winds, and the roots from extreme freezing temperatures. Therefore, there should be less winter damage this year than in past years from weather related causes.
However there is always an opposite reaction. There will probably be a lot of rodent damage, as the deep snow buries their normal food supply. As the snow melts, their tunnels will become visible just above ground level where they have been scurrying around searching for food sources. Unfortunately, hors d'oeuvres often consist of your most valuable plants. If a young tree or shrub fails to leaf out, check the bark at the base of the plant. There is a good chance that it has been girdled during the winter. If bark still remains on one side of the trunk or stem, with proper care the plant may well survive.
Deer damage definitely decimates many desirable plantings. But this a topic all by itself. Perhaps to be explored another month.
Road salt also causes damage to plant materials. This comes from run-off, splash from vehicles, and roadside plow drifts and heaps.
This is the time to think about parts of the past winter. Did the wind whistle around your windows? Were there deep drifts and open spots? Did ice build up on your driveway? Was the view from the kitchen window boring?
Good Design and landscaping can make a difference with all the topics touched upon above with one major exception. We have no influence or control of arrival, depth. duration or departure of snow.