Thursday, 21 July 2016

Spring Came Early

Well actually that title is wishful thinking, but some of my trees certain seem to think that it's true.

A case in point is the mulberry tree I rescued from my pavement a few months ago. Under normal circumstances I would have left it outdoors unprotected through the winter. However the root system is so new that I wasn't prepared to risk killing it, so, since nighttime temperatures started dropping below 5°C (41°F) I've been putting it out during the day and moving it into my greenhouse at night.

On 1 July I noticed the first signs that the buds were starting to swell, and now, less than three weeks later, it's already got quite a lot of young foliage. This photo of a young leaf was taken two days ago.


I wasn't surprised to see this happening to a tree in a sheltered environment, but yesterday I had a glance at what remains of the parent tree and discovered that the buds on that one are starting to swell too. It's growing right next to a west facing wall, but that's all the protection it gets from our "cold" winter nights.

Cold, in my climate, is still relatively mild of course. The lowest we've been so far this winter is 2°C (35°F), though it's likely that things will get worse before they get better. In fact, despite the fact that today has been pretty warm, the forecast for the next week is worse than anything we've had the whole winter. We're also expecting some unseasonal rain.

The good news for me is that spring really isn't that far off. By this time next month I expect to see new foliage on a lot of my deciduous trees.

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