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Ouch! nasty frost!

Ow, that was a sharp frost last night! It always gets something you don’t expect, doesn’t it? I tucked up both my little acers (but the branch that wasn’t covered turned out to be fine anyway!), but some hostas are looking a bit sad. It seems to depend on what stage the growth is at. Hosta ‘Sagae’, a beautiful, large-leaved, yellow-margined one, was really advanced, and its most mature leaves are fine, its young buds seem fine, but the just unfurled ones are rather limp.

I also covered up some apple blossom on my ‘Blenheim Orange’ and I’m glad I did, as quite a lot of the rest has got browned. I couldn’t reach the whole tree, and didn’t have anything big enough to cover it with anyway! Perhaps I should have tried the old professional fruit growers’ trick? Apparently they sprayed their orchards with water before a late frost – it freezes on the blossom and melts slowly in the morning, allegedly protecting it from extremes of temperature. It always sounded a bit far-fetched to me… 

Touch wood, the white wisteria is now high enough up the house wall to have escaped? We’ve had flowers on it maybe twice in ten years or more. Who’d live in frost pocket?

But the real surprise casualties are some of the wild flowers: the keck (Queen Anne’s lace, Anthriscus sylvestris) at the bottom of the garden was all knocked sideways and looked as though a whirlwind had whistled through it, and the marsh marigolds (Caltha palustris) around the pond, which have been looking fantastic, have all been shattered. And a beautiful native fern that was unfolding a perfect sheaf of bristling croziers yesterday is today dangling sadly, grey and limp. You’d think our poor old native flora would have evolved to cope with our erratic climate by now… 

brrr, it’s turning chilly again…

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