1. By John Floyd
    May 9, 2013 at 10:20 am | permalink

    It really is possible for the city to do good things. They just have to put their minds to it.

  2. By Rod Johnson
    May 9, 2013 at 2:01 pm | permalink

    It’s supposed to be freezing this weekend (low of 28 predicted for Sunday). I already lost last year’s pear crop; what’s a good way to keep this year’s from freezing?

  3. By Steve Bean
    May 9, 2013 at 2:13 pm | permalink

    Rod, we were just discussing that here at home. Our bigger trees (peaches and apricots) are too big to cover. I’m wondering about running the propane Weber grill with the lid closed all night between two of them. Or maybe I’ll transfer (and, in the process, turn) our compost pile over there on Saturday and hope that it gets to cooking. It’s supposed to be windy Sunday night, though, so I’m probably just going to move on with other gardening. Of course, it’s just a forecast, and we know about those around here. :-)

  4. By Rod Johnson
    May 9, 2013 at 2:20 pm | permalink

    My trees are probably small enough to cover with a big tarp. We were thinking about just putting light bulbs under them but I’m unsure if that will produce enough heat.

  5. By Steve Bean
    May 9, 2013 at 2:34 pm | permalink

    Probably not. Big containers of water are another option.The forecast has already changed, though. :-)

  6. May 9, 2013 at 2:57 pm | permalink

    NOAA says 31 to 35 is the low. This actually varies a lot depending on where you are in Ann Arbor and whether you are in a depression, near a wall, etc.

    If it were my tree, I’d just hope for the best and avoid tarping etc that might damage the tree.

  7. May 10, 2013 at 11:16 am | permalink

    The NOAA forecast now says a possible minimum of 28. This is more alarming since 28 is the temperature at which many natural plant frost damage mechanisms falter.

    George Hammond kindly passed along this link to a garden listserv. [list] It recommends using textiles (not plastic) to cover trees and shrubs. Presumably a light cover on tender annuals is also a good idea. Me, I wait till May 15 to plant anything but half-hardy plants, regardless of how nice it is.

  8. By Steve Bean
    May 13, 2013 at 11:48 am | permalink

    The Marra Drive station on wunderground.com reports a low of 30 (F) for last night.

    We successfully covered most of our flowering and fruiting bushes and trees, and they seem to have fared better than those we didn’t cover. If we see a difference in the outcomes of covered vs. uncovered maybe I’ll post some photos of what we did.

    How are your pears looking, Rod?

  9. By suswhit
    May 13, 2013 at 1:36 pm | permalink

    I noticed a few minutes ago that the coleus on 5th Ave at the old Y parking lot got badly frosted.

  10. By Rod Johnson
    May 13, 2013 at 3:40 pm | permalink

    Well, they’re not pears yet, just flowers. Ask me in July. We covered some of the trees, so I have my fingers crossed. But out here in the wilderness, away from the urban heat island, that was a serious frost.

  11. By Steve Bean
    May 13, 2013 at 4:54 pm | permalink

    @10: I meant the pear *trees*. :-)

    The neighbors’ roofs had frost on them (I didn’t look at ours), and the birdbaths had 1/4-1/2” of ice. The uncovered peach and apricot trees still look good. Some blossoms and fruit will probably not make it, but I’m guessing less than 20%. It’ll be nice to get some after last year’s goose egg for apricots and only a few peaches.

  12. By Rod Johnson
    May 14, 2013 at 12:33 pm | permalink

    Looks like I hijacked Vivienne’s thread but good. Sorry about that.

  13. May 14, 2013 at 12:56 pm | permalink

    It’s all good.