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Friday, March 8, 2013

Removing the tarp to take out the peonies and bamboos 2013

It looks like the threat of a major freeze into the teens is diminishing, and a lot of plants are starting to wake up so I decided to take off the tarp for my potted plants.

Here's the tarp back in February under 1ft of snow









I have since taken off the pool liner tarp. The bamboos and other plants are generally hardy enough to stay out. I separated the peonies because they have tender sprouts that still need to adapt to stronger light conditions, and likely can't handle hard freezes at this point. I have the tarp on the side in case it gets below 27F.

Bamboos/ trees

Phyllostachys Shanghai III/ parvifolia divisions


Tree/ itoh peonies- I planted garlic in with the itoh peony divisions to prevent fungus from growing

Here are some close up pictures showing how these peonies are very light in color due to the lack of light from being under the tarp. It has varied from 32-38F under the tarp which is more than enough to activate peony growth. Surprisingly some of them had leaves that survived through the entire winter under the tarp which got down to around 25F.
























Just to show the comparison, here's a tree peony growing in one of my flower beds which shows much more red due to continual exposure to the sun. This is what I want the tarped ones to look like after a couple weeks as they keep growing.


18 comments:

  1. Hi Steve,

    Nice blog - like you, I am interested in growing exotic plants, principally bamboo, in a cold climate. I am near Toronto, ON and I have had ok experience with my phyllostachys rubromarginata and aureosulcata spectabilis, though with serious leaf burn in both years. I also have a Fargesia Scrabadia that has done ok. I was looking to add some additional varieties and was wondering what you think about their cold-hardiness. I thnik I will be safe in 6b with P. Bissetti, Nuda, atrovaginata, and Fargesia Nitida, but I was wondering about two large timber bamboos, P. Vivax and P. Nigra 'Henon'. It seems both are somewhat less cold-tolerant than the others I have mentioned but I was wondering if you had any experience with them and could suggest which one might be a better choice.

    Thanks,
    Frank

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Vivax, and henon are both very marginal in this zone, and henon is definitely a bit hardier, but as far as a giant bamboo, your safest bet with atrovaginata. Those 2 other species don't seem to live up anywhere near their rated hardiness, even though they are supposed to have good size potential. Mine has never sustained much leaf burn here, and it has put culms near 19ft high this year, and it's nowhere close to done upsizing. Atrovaginata does appear hardier than rubromarginata, and even edges out the aureosulcatas in hardiness by a bit.

      Parvifolia is a hair less hardy. If you go to the bambooweb forums, there's actually another bamboo grower with a decent number of species growing in Toronto.

      I actually have much more recent pictures on this forum thread.
      http://bambooweb.info/bb/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=6117

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  2. Thanks Steve - I think I will look to pick up an atrovarginata and an F. nitida next. What do you think the height potential of the aureosulcatas is in zone 6? I have read about 15 feet, perhaps 18. What do you think?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've seen aureosulcata in zone 6 get up to around 27ft by 1 1/4 inches so its height potential is decent, but they don't get that big in diameter. In zone 7/8, I've seen aureosulcata get right up to the 2 inch mark by around 40ft so it is still fairly skinny for its height.

      The best place to probably get atrovaginata at the best price is to make a post on the forums, and try to get it from one of the forum members who already have it who are in Canada already. I actually have some divisions of it available, but they would cost way too much to ship across the border, and rhizome divisions wouldn't work well at this time of the year, unless some whip shoots emerge away from the main clump from now until the end of the season.

      The thing about F Nitida is that you will need to give it some afternoon shade or else it will struggle through the summer like most fargesias, and they tend to grow very slow, but can be rewarding after many years of growth.

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  3. Hi Steve - thanks for the tips. I think I read somewhere that you are near Rochester - is that right? Maybe I'll make the drive down some time if you're willing to sell some divisions of atrovaginata. There's also a seller in Michigan, Michigan Bamboo Co, but Rochester is only about 2.5 hours away for me, vs. 4.5 for the grower in Michigan. I'm also considering trying out some Semiarundinaria fastuosa. Do you happen to have any?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I actually don't have Semiarundinaria fastuosa,but I do have lots of atrovaginata available.

      I am right in Rochester NY. You can just email me at stevelau1922@gmail.com, or call me before you come down. Are you sure you are allowed to bring plants across the border?

      I believe that if you are in Toronto, you should be in about the same climate as here, perhaps with cooler summers so atrovaginata should still thrive.

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  4. I will look into the import regulations - I don't think there are any significant barriers. Funny enough, my wife and I might be coming down to Akron, NY to adopt a dog in the next few weeks. If it pans out, I will contact you. Thanks Again.

    ReplyDelete
  5. So the rule is you can import plants/trees, including bamboo, into Caanda from the US, but you can't import soil of any kind! This should be interesting...our border services suggested sponge or moss - I take it there is some agricultural product available that replicates soil just for the purposes of transport, though I suppose I could also just transport it bare-root until I reach the Canadian side, and buy some soil right after I cross.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I typically send bamboos up to Canada in boxes completely soil free with wet newspapers around them so that should work in this situation.

      I'm kind of surprised that you would be zone 6b given that you are north of the lake as opposed to directly below it, but if that is the case, you should be able to grow the bamboos I keep just as easily.

      Just let me know when you come down.

      Delete
  6. Sounds good Steve. I live in Oakville, Ontario, and there is some conflicting data regarding hardiness. Some maps say 6a, some say 6b. Those maps, however, are at least 13 years old, and because of my sheltered yard, urban micro-climate, and the general warming we have been experiencing over the last few decades, I usually use zone 6b as a guide.

    It looks like we might be coming down on Aug 3 or 4 but I will let you know when I have confirmation. thanks again.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'll look forward to seeing you. My gardens also have much more than just bamboo.

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    2. Hi Steve - It doesn't look like I will be coming down this weekend, but I am definitely going to try to make it before the end of the month. I will stay in touch. Cheers, Frank

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    3. Alright.

      I'll save that very large dwarfed atrovaginata for you then.

      It is basically a 16+ft culm shrunk down to a 6 footer by sheath removal so it has plenty of energy, but will be possible to carry, and much easier to protect for the first winter.

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    4. THat would be excellent! I'll stay in touch.

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    5. You can just give me a call beforehand. I have my number on this blog, but it's 585-797-4787

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  7. Hi Steve - It looks like Sunday, August 18th would be the best day for me to come down. Does that work for you?

    Also, I was wondering if you had any P. Parvifolia divisions that you might be willing to spare. I have read that it may be the most cold-tolerant giant timber bamboo in existence and I would love to give it a shot.

    Frank

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Frank, I do have a nice tall clump of parvifolia to spare on one side of the grove. I have a steel broad fork so It's pretty easy for me to get any bamboo division out no matter how big it is. It's definitely not getting much leaf burn here right below the lake so it should survive if you are in the same zone right from the get go.

      Sunday the 18th does sound like a good day. I'll make sure I save the parvifolia too which is actually obviously sticking out from the rest of the grove.

      Delete
  8. That's great!! I will stay in touch and give you a call closer to the day.

    Thanks,
    Frank

    ReplyDelete