Variegated? No, just cold damage.

Looking out the window yesterday, sunlight brightening the afternoon, I realized that the bamboo looked so wrong. Still greenish, but too light, the normally fine-textured foliage looking a bit too thin.

Evidence of the arctic air we felt ten days ago is all too apparent, but it's not too disheartening if you just imagine that these are all variegated forms of these plants. Not impossible to do in the sunshine's glare.


There are still some surviving leaves inside some of these plants, so all is not lost:

They're still attractive plants, even when damaged:

Of course there are also the bamboos that I expect to get burned somewhat or even topkill every year, where the damage is not disturbing:

Those will get mowed down in late winter (like any other ornamental grass), and will come back strong with plenty of new shoots and leaves in spring.

Interestingly, some plants (like this Shibatea kumasaca) took severe damage on half, but appear to be untouched on the rest of the plant:

I'd expect some of those green leaves to have partial damage, but they don't. Very strange.

Back to the disappointment...

Since the sunlight was giving these shots a bit too much contrast, I waited until late afternoon to take a comparison shot:

The too-light color really stands out here.

I expect to see these leaves all turning brown soon, which will add an even more interesting (and distressing) look to the garden.

Stay tuned...

(As a reminder to myself, this was after -8ºF with at least -25ºF windchill)


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Alan  – (January 16, 2014 at 12:07 PM)  

The Shibatea kumasaca that was half fried and half untouched? The untouched part was probably buried in the snow -- I completely forgot that we had about a foot of it before the temperatures dropped!

Salty Pumpkin Studio  – (January 16, 2014 at 3:38 PM)  

It amazes me how much texture bamboo gives a garden year round.

Lisa  – (January 16, 2014 at 6:47 PM)  

That's where that good snow cover is welcome - we had 18 inches on the ground before the coldest temperatures hit. We've also heard reports that the extreme temperatures may have killed off a good number of the emerald ash borer larvae - time will tell.

Alan  – (January 16, 2014 at 9:22 PM)  

Lisa: 18 feet of snow would have helped more. :)

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