In early January, record lows were observed throughout the country. In Birmingham, the record all-time low was -6F, set in 1985, temps dropped to 7F in my neighborhood.
As an unscientific experiment, I left one shimpaku in the garage, one on the bench, and one on the ground. I wanted to see how they responded over time. With cold weather safely behind us…Here are some photos I braved 8F to photograph as part of my unscientific experiment, followed by a few spring shots, nearly 5 months later. I am pleased to report that no trees were harmed during this experiment.
On the bench in January:
On the ground at 7 degrees F:
The white pines and ezo spruce stayed right in the benches for the single digits:
Broadleaf evergreens’ leaves curl in protest. Particularly the azaleas, gardenias, and (pictured below), camellias:
Junipers turn a bronze-purple, always very unusual, and alarming to the uninitiated!
The bronze color of the itoigawas shows well:
Best I can find in researching and observing is that the response is to protect the tree from the cold and/or transpiring whole roots are frozen. It appears to be a withdrawal of chlorophyll, similar to leaves changing color in fall. An additional observation:
Junipers from colder climates (Itoigawa, Eastern Red Cedar) display greater change than those from warmer climates (Kishu, Torulosa).
Any more scientific details would be appreciated!
Remember to come see us at the ABS Spring a Show today and tomorrow!