Now that most of the snow has (temporarily) melted away it's possible to see how the plants have fared so far. Most still look ok, some are doing better than I expected and a few others don't look as nice as previous winters. All picture taken on February 10, 2009.
The Aucuba serratifolia (left in picture) and Prunus laurocerasus have no browning at all so far.
Aucuba Gold Dust, which looked dead a few weeks ago has bounced back nicely. This is the first year for this one.
Magnolia D.D. Blanchard looks amazing for the cold we have had. This is the most sheltered of the Magnolias, but still! I spray all the Magnolias with Wilt-Pruf (an anti-dessicant) in the fall before a hard frost.
Magnolia Victoria has seen four winters in the garden and although it has done very well in the past, this year it looks awful. There is a lot of browning and while I'm sure it will live I'm not sure how much foliage it will lose come spring.
Quercus virginiana (Live? Oak) is another broadleaf evergreen that sometimes survives here. It's not looking good but it did the same thing last year and then grew new leaves in spring so maybe.
I am really surprised at the Gardenia Kleims Hardy. I haven't seen it for about a month (buried under snow) and I fully expected it to be dead. And while it isn't a vision of lushness it is green and very much alive. Snow cover is not dependable in Niagara but this winter it's been fairly constant.
The melting snow also revealed some alive parts on the Loropetalum chinensis. I don't hold out much hope for this one, but it might make it.
Euphorbia amygdaloides robbiae looks very good for the time of year. They typically brown by mid-winter so I think the constant snow cover helped keep these green as well. Let's see what happens to them now.
I'm not happy with how the Monkey Puzzle (Araucaria araucana) looks. Just a few weeks ago it was green and now it is not looking too thrilled to be suffering through a Niagara winter.
This variegated Liriope, which I had forgotten I planted last fall, seems unfazed by the winter. I'll have to plant more of it.
Fargesia robusta (the clumping bamboo) is shedding a few leaves but that is typical this time of year. I expect it to produce 7-8 foot tall shoots this spring. And it might grow 9-10 foot tall by spring 2010 (I hope).
The Phyllostachys (running bamboo) is about 50% wilt. I fully expect it to live, I just wonder how it will look in May.
All the cacti are looking fine but the Mazari palm (Nannhorhops ritchiana) is having a bad winter. The Sabal minor (the only plant that is wrapped in my garden and consequently not pictured) looks amazing under a mulch of leaves)
A little pencil Cholla cactus (right in picture) and Ephedera.
Hebe sutherlandii (left in picture) is much browner than two weeks ago. The little Euonymous on the right is doing better.