Plants in pots, under eves and porticos, and on the side of the house where rain does not blow (leeward side), often do not get enough water during the winter months and can dry up and die by spring. During exceptionally warm winters, be sure to check these plants closely for water and water heavily each time they are in need. This helps ensure your plants will remain alive throughout the winter.
Many spring bulbs have already emerged and may already be blooming in your garden. If it gets too cold the flowers, buds, and foliage on this premature growth may freeze back. Don’t be alarmed, these plants will continue to push up foliage when it warms again. These bulbs can tolerate a lot of cold weather. It usually takes air temperatures in the mid to low teens to cause significant damage. A good snow prior to severe cold is a real protective blessing for these types of plants.
Some early spring shrubs such as quince and forsythia may also begin to bloom. Let’s hope it stays cold enough for these to not push vegetative growth as well. These are very cold hardy shrubs and the worst that could happen would be they would get frozen back a bit should the weather turn extremely cold.
With a little extra care, your plants will happily survive a warm winter. In the meantime, we will all be looking forward to spring!