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What do you use to cover your shrubs to protect them from the snow

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Joined: 3/30/2002
Location: Southern Maine Zone4/5
Posts: 2550
Posted: Dec/05/2005 11:20 AM PST

i have some rhodies that i planted out front of the house and they are under where the snow will fall from the roof onto them, what should i use to cover them to protect them from the falling snow breaking them. they are getting big so it's hard to use the pieces of plywood that i have in the past to cover them. any suggestions would be welcome, what do you use???:banana-wa
Joined: 7/07/2003
Location: The Garden State
Posts: 849
Posted: Dec/05/2005 11:41 AM PST

I don't know what else you can use besides the plywood , maybe you could build a tepee form with 1x1's and wrap heavy duty plastic around it so the snow slides off the the tepee.
Joined: 11/11/2005
Location: Sun City Az.
Posts: 40
Posted: Dec/05/2005 6:00 PM PST

I used to buy a sort of insulated "blanket" for my fragile plants in Illinois but any shrub that is under an eve where the snow can slide off the roof and break it would have to be protected with a solid cover. Then you must be cautious of the thawing and freezing aspect of winter... that can kill a tender plant very quickly. Your rhodies might be better off if just left uncovered and let the heat of your foundation protect them after you've cleaned off heavy snow build up on your roof and perhaps just shoveled deep snow around them to support them. Good luck.... I love rhodies!
Joined: 3/30/2002
Location: Southern Maine Zone4/5
Posts: 2550
Posted: Dec/05/2005 6:55 PM PST

thanks everyone, guess i will try to rig something up out of plywood, maybe i can out up 4 stakes then nail the plywood to them...
Joined: 3/25/2005
Location: Pa
Posts: 503
Posted: Dec/05/2005 7:21 PM PST

Not trying to be a smart a$$. For now also get some twine and gently tie them around. Like you see a Christmas tree done. This will help prevent splitting. A suggestion, as soon as they are done blooming this Spring, cut them back HARD! Then dig and move out from below the roof drip line. Most shrubbery is always planted to close to a house. Most beds are always to shallow. I know it looks dumb, and that folks are always in a rush for a FULL look and that many initial plantings are just pop the pot shrubs (SMALL) and stuck close to appear filled in fast. To be done right, realize the size that the shrub will be when mature or if often pruned. Then come out from the drip line, half that distance. This will eliminate the having to shield them for the future. I have moved 30 year old Rhoddies and had them do fine, by using this method. Just a thought....Good Luck! PS: Some folks will even cover them on top with Burlap and tie that off, works great as long as you don't get a nice long warm spell....
Joined: 1/25/2005
Location: Michigan
Posts: 105
Posted: Dec/21/2005 3:08 AM PST

It may be a bit late this season, but get some stakes and burlap. Pound the stakes around your Rhodo and wrap in snug with burlap. Burlap keeps the winter winds and any sun from drying out and killing bush. Wrapped snug and your Rhodie has support from snow damage as well.
Don't use plastic, that can work as a heat source and do more harm to shrub. Depending on the size, I wouldn't move it either.
Another option for now is a roof rake, and keep snow build up off your roof.

Michigan Certified Nurseryman #1674

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