The weather lately has been insane, and I don’t think I’m the only one that has noticed [at least I hope not!]. The other week I was wearing shorts and a t-shirt to class, and this week it’s pants, sweaters, and jackets. What in the world is going on?! For the people reading this who didn’t experience the erratic temperature changes, this article will give you a little insight on what people in the GTA experienced.. including Guelph! One line that I found to be pretty shocking said “With the windchill, it’s expected to feel like -15C”. Wait, isn’t it APRIL?! It got me thinking, if I’m concerned about how I’m going to dress the next day because the weather is so unpredictable, what about the environment, the trees, and the plants that have already started to bud? They have nothing to keep them warm if tomorrow decides to be really cold!
During the period of nice weather, I was looking at my University’s Arboretum website because I have never ventured out there before, and the weather was perfect for it! For those of you that don’t know, the Arboretum is basically a forest that we have on the University of Guelph campus which is really beautiful and has all kinds of nature and wildlife. I was looking through the website for maps because:
- the arboretum is massive
- I know myself too well and I know I’d get lost, and
- there are so many beautiful places in the arboretum that I wanted to see!
Basically, I was just planning out where I wanted to go in the arboretum and reassuring myself that I wasn’t going to get lost. While looking through the website, I stumbled upon the Arboretum’s Flickr page! They seem to update it pretty frequently so I’ve been checking it out quite a bit. One of the days that I was looking, I found this picture of a fully bloomed Japanese garden in the arboretum. Unfortunately, that night the weather dropped to approximately -8 degrees celcius. The effect that it had on the plants was, well… quite depressing. This is what those flowers looking like the next day. Crazy right? Because of such warm weather so early in the year, plants started budding and blooming so early, and unfortunately, Mother Nature decided to pull a trick on all of us and bring back the cold. So what is going to happen to the plants now? To be honest… I’m not sure. I think it depends on how cold it was when there was frost, what kind of frost it was, if all of the flowers were in full bloom etc. I’ve been trying to research this and have been coming up short with very minimal information. Don’t quote me on that though, I’m no professional gardener and no Franky Flowers for those of you that watch Breakfast Television. What I do know is that there are two kinds of frost: Light frost and hard frost. Light frost basically just burns the edges of leaves and “damages frost-tender species, wilting them beyond repair”. On the other hand, there is hard frost, which is considered to be the fatal kind. It’s what happens when the ground gets below 0 degrees which unfortunately kills plants. So, fingers crossed that it was the light frost that hit our Arboretum!