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Snow and Early Spring Bulbs

Many of our spring flowering bulbs are starting to make an appearance. This can be disconcerting if you are new to gardening. But worry not! For a while now we’ve had snow drops blooming. As the name implies, blooming while there’s still snow on the ground is no concern for this delicate looking but surprisingly tough flower. Daffodils are also poking their heads up. We often see daffodil foliage emerging when snow is still covering much of the garden, or when it’s forecasted to snow.

The foliage that emerges now in the snow, then rain, then snow again will survive! It is Cincinnati after all and the spring/winter tango is not uncommon at this time of year in our gardens. Worst case scenario, the tips get a little winter burn. The buds however, are still safely ensconced in the soil. One reason why many gardeners hope for a generous snow fall is that the snow acts as a wonderful insulator of the soil and our plants. A snow covering helps to regulate the soil’s temperature and when our gardens lack a good snow covering, the soil fluctuates with each freezing and thawing cycle. Shallow-rooted plants such as Heucheras, are often lifted out of the soil during such freeze-thaw cycles. That’s why you’ll see gardeners tucking the plants back into the soil come spring.  

Step out in the garden, look for those promises of spring to come, but don’t be concerned if you see snowdrops, crocus, or winter aconite emerging or blooming in the snow.

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