There is some cautiously optimistic news out of snowy Cleveland. According to The Plain Dealer, Northeast Ohio's fruit farmers should be okay in spite of the late cold and snow. Most local apple and peach trees (we can grow peaches here?!) have not yet flowered. Early crabapples and all magnolia flowers are considered goners, but as those are not really "crop" trees I wouldn't call their loss devastating. Just a bummer for those who planted and love them.
I've been reading some interesting comments on other garden blogs and forums about this cold snap. Yes, people in my zone take a chance with late cold snaps when they plant any sort of spring-flowering fruit tree... but does that really mean that we should not do so?
If we get apples and cherries and other fruit at least 9 years out of every 10, shouldn't we be happy about those 9 good years instead of letting the 1 bad year shut us down entirely? I may not take those odds if I was depending on fruit farming as my livelihood, but I gladly accept them as a home gardener.
The snow is starting to melt here but I still have over a foot in many places in the yard. You can now see my sedum alboroseum 'Mediovariegatum' emerging from the top of one of my chimney tile planters. They and the rest of my perennials will be fine--as Annie and others noted on my original snow post, the snow has insulated and protected them.
Where the amount of snow we received might cause trouble is in my front garden. It was a very heavy snow, and came in quantity, so it might have caused my spring bulb stems to snap. The second picture shows fritillary foliage and a rosette of salvia lyrata leaves on the edge of the front bed, newly uncovered by the receding snow bank.
I'm not sure whether the frits will bounce back and stand upright again, or what I will find when the tulips reemerge from the front snowbank. But I do know that whatever small setbacks occur in my yard, I will not complain. As Don so eloquently stated in his "Elegy For A Garden" post: "But our garden is a trifle... a pleasant hobby; I reserve my sorrow for those who try to make their living by growing; especially the orchardists and produce growers." And with the wacky "spring" that we've been having, I'm afraid that those folks may not be out of the woods just yet--even in Cleveland.