Although it's been pretty cold lately, at or slightly below our normal temperatures, I decided not to procrastinate and I started removing the potted bamboos from my temporary greenhouse. Last year I remember it being pretty warm when I did this, and it took at least an hour to get the pots out. Since it's above freezing but definitely not warm right now I'm not going to dawdle this year.
There are on the order of 50 pots in here this year, and I don't have a well-defined plan on where they're going to go, but too much thinking and I'll end up putting this off for another week -- I really don't want to do that.
So I just started pulling plants out and sticking them out of the way but nearby:
They're all marked with tags so I don't have to remember which are which -- some species are easy to ID, but some are pretty similar to others.
I didn't spend nearly as much time checking on the plants in here this winter as I did last year, so I don't know details of how the plants have done. There's a lot of green so I know they're in good shape for the most part, but only when I start pulling them out could I really see what's going on. My idea was to only empty part of the greenhouse today, leaving me some space for some cold-weather veggie starts.
That's what I'm trying to prevent: early shooting. Although I'm eager to see the shoots emerging, I want these plants to shoot at the right time. Early shoots are vulnerable to late freezes.
There's mole activity under some of the pots:
Plus I can see a couple of plants that don't look too good. For instance, this one, tucked in with all of the greenery:
That's a Chimonobambusa tumidissinoda, and it really took a hit. I knew it wasn't cold-hardy enough to take our temps here, hence the greenhouse stay. Getting it outside doesn't help much:
It's pretty much fried. The good news is that there are some green culms left, so it's not top-killed.
It will be interesting to see how this one bounces back. I'm going to have to find a better overwintering strategy for this one next year.
This other bamboo looked a little less-than-healthy too, back behind some other plants:
I had to move a few pots around to get it out:
It's Phyllostachys lithophila, a bamboo native to Taiwan. Rolled up leaves like this mean either the plant really needs some water, or the leaves have been damaged. Could be both in this case. I gave it some water and did see some of the leaves unfurl a bit, but I suspect most of these leaves will turn brown and fall off soon. The good news is the leaf buds are all fine, and starting to swell:
So this plant should leaf back out fully, which is exciting because it's got a really attractive form. I don't know what I'll do next year when it will probably be too tall for the greenhouse. I'll most likely have to lay it on the ground and tarp over it as I did with many other plants.
I'll use this space in the greenhouse to start some cold weather veggies: lettuce, spinach, kale, and similar. I'm thinking about building a little temporary raised bed in here too, or maybe planting some tomatoes in containers. If I decide to put some cold-weather crops in here I'll leave the greenhouse door open, but if I go with the tomatoes and other summer plants I'll close it back up and let it get hot and steamy in here again. I haven't decided what to do yet.
The only thing I do know is I still have half a greenhouse of potted bamboos to pull out sometime soon, and I need to figure out where to put them so they won't get in the way. Why do I have so many bamboos?