My Yard a Week After Snow

A week ago today we had huge snowflakes falling in our yard. The temperature was somewhere around 28 or 30 degrees F last week. Since then it went up to the mid-70s and back down to the low 30s. Today’s temps have pretty much hung around 40-50 degrees, I think.

I worked outside this afternoon, cutting things in my front yard that were done in by last week’s snow and cold. The Turk’s cap and four o’clocks were casualties. The fern is all brown and the elephant ears are just plain icky. I’m still working on those. Everything will come back next spring.

We had some yucca at the corner of the house until one of them bloomed. They die after they bloom but I didn’t expect the whole group of them to crater. I’m not sure why that happened. Now we have this open space…hmm. We could plant more yucca from the backyard or we could put something else there.

Our Lantana didn’t look right this year. The ends of some of the branches seemed to be malformed and the blooms weren’t normal. I think it may be a virus. I read someplace that some bright person thought it would be a good idea to turn a virus loose on Lantana where they are considered a nuisance. The ones in my yard were not a nuisance, thank you! I found a few branch tips that were protected from snow and I plan to take them to the County Agriculture office and see what they think is the problem. I hope these bushes will be OK.

I ripped out all the potato vine that I could find. This plant seed was given to us a couple years ago. It makes a huge vine with heart-shaped leaves and has seed pods look like potatoes hanging on the vine. The way it came back this year had me wondering. It seemed like it had quite a bit of gusto for a plant that is easy to control. I have since found out that is because it’s not easy to control! I think I won’t let that one grow next year but will plant moon flowers and morning glories instead.

My husband wants to plant another fruit tree. He has a satsuma and wants to add a peach tree. I don’t want to give up any more garden space to a tree, but it would be nice to have peaches off our own tree, so we are looking for a good place to put it. I thought I could move one of the lantanas (if they survive whatever is making them look funny) but that spot is not protected from the north wind. However, at the corner of the house where the yucca was might be just the perfect place. Away from wind and squirrels, too.

A few days after the snow I wandered out back to see how things looked. My banana tree is a mess. It ought to come back. I’ve never tried to grow one but I’ve been told they are hard to kill. That’s the kind of plant I need. They aren’t a true tree either, but are technically an herb. That sounds weird when I think of what most herbs look like.

My husband’s lipstick plant was so pretty with bright green leaves and red flowers and snow falling on it. It’s not so pretty now; just sticks with dead leaves and flowers hanging on. In most places in the US, the lipstick plant is a houseplant. It’s a type of hibiscus and we grow those outside here in Southeast Texas. We should have protected it but forgot. I was so excited about snow I forgot to do anything for the plants in the ground, but I did bring the ones in pots inside. Oh, the pansies are loving this cold weather! And my buttercrunch lettuce looks great.

I really hope to get the peach tree site chosen soon and get one planted. Also, I want to rearrange my front yard. I think it will be a much bigger job than just moving furniture!