Here it comes again...

By "it" I mean the bamboo-killing cold. Last year we reached -8ºF (-22ºC) as a low a couple of times here in St. Louis when the Polar Vortex spun down and made us wonder exactly how that arctic ice was disappearing, and the result was that all of my bamboos spent a few months with brown leaves.

This winter our low had been 6ºF (-14ºC) which is no problem for the several Phyllostachys bamboo species that I have planted. Most of them are all still green and lovely, but that will be ending tonight.


The current temperature this morning is 14ºF (-10ºC), and that's the high for the day. Tonight we're expected to hit -2ºF  (-19ºC) which wouldn't have me too worried -- it's not -8ºF so things should be better than last year -- except that winds will be around 10 mph (16 kph) with gust of 20 mph (32 kph) or so. Nothing desiccates bamboo leaves faster than bitterly cold winds.

So I'm expecting these to be the last photos of happy, green bamboo leaves you'll see from me for a while.

Next up you'll be seeing much more of this sort of thing:

The green bamboo in the foreground is Ph. virella.
It's quite hardy so I'll be watching it closely. 

The fish in the pond won't notice the cold...

...and at times like these I kind of wish I were unaware of what's going on above around me too.

The birdbath heater will be working overtime tonight...

...much to the relief of those living outdoors.

I'm hoping they're a bit off in their forecast, as every degree counts when it comes to bamboo survival...


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Mark and Gaz  – (February 18, 2015 at 10:47 AM)  

Yikes! Cross fingers it won't be as bad as predicted Alan

Gerhard Bock (Succulents and More)  – (February 18, 2015 at 12:35 PM)  

Same here. Keeping my fingers crossed. It's been 30 years since I experienced cold that intense and I'm not sure I ever want to experience it again.

Salty Pumpkin Studio  – (February 18, 2015 at 3:10 PM)  

living me chivers.
I hope your beautiful bamboo trees don't lose to many leaves. I think of bamboo and panda bears in snow like the trees can take the cold.

outlawgardener  – (February 18, 2015 at 4:55 PM)  

So sorry to hear about your cold! Move west, young man!

Alan  – (February 18, 2015 at 9:55 PM)  

We're still in upper single digits right now as I wind down for bed, so maybe they got it wrong. Besides, it will be 40ºF and raining on Saturday, so there's that to look forward to...

danger garden  – (February 18, 2015 at 11:51 PM)  

I will never be able to understand your temperature swings, so quick and strong. Like the others I'm hoping you don't hit the predicted lows.

Alan  – (February 19, 2015 at 9:44 AM)  

Loree: I've never known anything else, being a Midwestern guy my whole life. I don't know what I would do with predictable weather.

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