By Steve Rozic
Although the snow is welcome moisture, it may cause damage to Perennials, Roses, leaved/flowering Shrubs and Trees. We are always inclined to panic and rush out to save our plant material, what we tend to forget is that the snow becomes a great insulator against sudden drops in temperatures.
Perennials and Roses are usually able to withstand heavy snow around this time, their branches and stems are young and pliable and will bounce back once they are exposed to the sun and warmth. If by chance the temperatures dive into the lower digits, covering them with a frost cloth will help them to survive.
Leaved/flowering Shrubs and Trees can handle the temperature of the snow, the weight of the snow is a different story. Gently tap the snow away, avoid hitting the branches hard so that they aren’t damaged. Avoid trying to cover them, the weight of the wet snow builds on the cloth and may snap branches. Fruit trees can be tightly wrapped in a cone style to avoid buds from freezing.
**Do not cover any plant material with plastic tarps, the temperature under the plastic tarp becomes lower than outside the tarp and may freeze the plant material you are trying to protect.