Do you live in Oklahoma or Texas? Or, perhaps you have some friends there that have to pull out their best efforts to grow some plants? Well, Oklahoma and Texas are popular for their icy conditions and even the extreme drought. Therefore, the gardeners in this region have to beat the extreme weather by finding the right tough plants in their garden.
The extreme weather at this time is not the only issues for many regions of the U.S. Therefore, this hard condition adds the new challenges to maintain the landscape design in your home. The high and low temperatures are so unusual together with tornadoes, floods, droughts, snow, ice, and everything that damage your plants.
If you live in the South Central region, drought, ice, excessive heat, and persistent low winter temperatures are the main reason why your plants look worse. Here are some best ways on how to deal with the extreme weather so that your plants are still able to survive.
Drought and Heat
If Water around you is at a premium and still in a possible ratio, there are some ways to conserve the moisture in your garden. The tips here are from Texas A&M AgriLife.
First, it is good to deal with the irrigation system. At this point, make sure that your irrigation systems have no troubles. The system should function properly. There should be no leaks as well. In addition, you should not set any automatic timers. Keep in mind that you should base watering on the plant stress.
Second, it is important to know about the best time to water your lawn. We recommend you to do that in the early morning right before the heat sets in. Talking about watering, it is good to water less often. Watering is not about the frequency, but more about to perform deep watering. Also, it is better to provide rain barrels to provide the supplemental watering. You can contact your county extension office in Oklahoma or Texas to get more information about rainwater harvesting.
Third, you should mulch your plants. Mulch is a nice addition to your garden. They are the real helper to conserve moisture.
Go With Drought-tolerant Plants
You are living in a region with extreme weather. So, there is nothing better than to grow some plants that can tolerate drought. In fact, these plants can make you easily care for their needs, especially when it comes to water supply. Nevertheless, you should support them first by supplying enough water until they are well-established. After that, you can do less watering.
If you have no idea about the best plants that can tolerate drought, you can try some popular plants below. These plants are the popular options for gardeners in Oklahoma and Texas:
- Wax begonia (Begonia spp.)
- Texas bluebonnet (Lupinus texensis)
- Globe amaranth (Gomphrena globosa)
- Firebush (Hamelia patens)
- Marigold (Tagetes spp.)
- Butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa)
- Autumn sage (Salvia greggii), pictured
- Blanket flower (Gaillardia x Grandiflora)
- ‘Blue Mist’ spirea (Caryopteris x clandonensis)
- Daylily (Hemerocallis cultivars)
- Crape myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica)
- Junipers (Juniperus spp.)
- Nandina (Nandina domestica)
- Shrub roses (Rosa spp.)
- Yaupon holly (Ilex vomitoria)
- Maiden grass (Miscanthus sinensis cultivars)
- Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum)
- Caddo sugar maple (Acer saccharum ‘Caddo’)
- Chinese pistache (Pistacia chinensis)
- Lacebark elm (Ulmus parvifolia)
- Oklahoma or Texas redbud (Cercis canadensis var. texensis ‘Oklahoma’)
- Shumard oak (Quercus shumardii)
- Texas lilac (Vitex spp.)
Cold, Ice, Snow
The extreme cold may wreak your shrubs, but it is better not to be in a rush and pull up your damaged plants. In fact, some borderline hardy plants like dwarf yaupon holly and crape myrtle are able to come back from the roots in the spring. Some shrubs with the leaves in the green can turn brown in the milder winters. It happens because they have to deal with the extreme and sustained cold. In this condition, you do not have to cut back the shrub. If you have broadleaf evergreens, it is better to wait for the new leaves that will replace the brown ones.
If you grow Zone 7 Loropetalum chinense ‘Suzanne’, the plant may stay green or maroon in year-round but then turns brown to deal with the winter sustained cold. In this condition, you can leave the plant and see what will happen. In fact, the plant may drop the brown leaves and then replaces them with the new foliage in maroon. It goes the same if you see Tulsa on the spring yard. The plant may show the same damage but later, they still survive.
Abelias goes the same. If you think that usually they still evergreen during winter, in some cases they can lose their leaves. Wait and give them more time and you will see that they can grow back quickly in the spring. Azalea is also possible to drop their leaves and then recover by the time.
If the snow weighs down your favorite shrubs in your garden, it does not a big deal. You can help your shrubs by doing something like brushing the snow off by using a broom. On the other hands, you must do it carefully. If you want to remove the ice, it can cause more damage to the plants. We recommend you to let it be so the ice will melt by the time.
In the end, dealing with extreme weather is so challenging for gardeners. It seems bad to see the plants have to survive in the lawn during the winter with snow weighs them down. But, it is interesting to see many resilient plants to show their capability to survive.
So, do not let the extreme weather discourages you to have a beautiful garden as your personal retreat when you are too tired with all your business in your office. Gardening is something fun that even according to research, it can make you live longer. Gardening is all about reducing your stress. It makes you feel great to see all the blooms in your home. It is also the best thing to enjoy and have your little place to escape. So, keep gardening!