[permaculture] frozen trees and baby steps to permaculture

Diane Wilson dilwilson at sbcglobal.net
Wed Apr 25 14:03:47 EDT 2007

Here in northeast Kansas we experienced the harsh freeze period in early 
April, as well - culminating in 2 nights down to 17 degrees F. Seems that 
much of Zone 6 experienced this. I also live in an oak/hickory forest, and 
am elated to report that I'm starting to see some swelling buds on the oaks, 
and the hickories have started to leaf out. Lots of mast and fruit crops 
won't be producing this year around here. This is our first spring here on 
our place, so haven't done major design work or planting yet. But this 
freeze has gotten me wondering what, if anything, we can do to deal with 
future weather extremes.


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Katey" <newtribe at hughes.net>
To: "permaculture" <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Wednesday, April 25, 2007 8:48 AM
Subject: Re: [permaculture] frozen trees and baby steps to permaculture

> jedd wrote:
>>  As to your annoyed trees - each spring in my area we typically get
>>  a late frost that mildly irritates my figs (but remember, figs are
>>  weeds) and confuses my mulberries (typically the last to burst,
>>  strangely) - and they always bounce back.  Some or all of the
>>  crop is lost, but the trees aren't.  Mind you, I was eating mulberries
>>  off my tree a few weeks ago - and it's mid-autumn in my part of the
>>  world.
>>  Jedd.
> They are a little more than annoyed.  We, too, frequently have a late
> frost that freezes the young growth of several early flowering species.
> This was something different.  Here in Middle TN the early flowering
> understory trees were finished flowering a full 3-4 weeks ahead of the
> earliest dates i have witnessed before.  The oaks and hickories (and
> poplars and beeches) were wondering what the rush was, but they too
> finally succumbed to the temptation of the absurdly early warm weather.
>  The oaks and hickories had just let their pollen fly when we had 3
> nights in a row of hard freeze (still within our average last frost
> date).  The result is something i have never seen in 50 years of
> observation.  But, Kathy, if you look closely i'll bet you see some of
> those trees showing tiny starts of leaves here and there.  It is slow,
> and looking out through the woods it still looks more like late fall
> (brown, not orange), but up close i see tiny shoots of green coming out
> further down the branch.  Now what this means for the wildlife dependent
> on this oak-hickory forest is another question.  Especially here in my
> county where the forest has been clearcut at an alarming rate for the
> last 3 years.
> Talking with some local indigenous people i learned that the last time
> this happened was 150 years ago.  I found that mildly encouraging.
> There has been a precedent and we made it through.  Hopefully this year
> will be challenging but not devastating to the local wildlife.
> While writing in my journal the other day i wrote "2007, the Spring that
> Looked Like Autumn".  The indigenous people are calling 2007 "The Year
> of the Brown Spring".
> TAPO - this will be quite a year for that.
> ~katey
> Katey Culver
> ecoville architechs
> www.earthandstraw.net
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