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Horticulture/Winter damaged shrub

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Question
Daphne × burkwoodii \'Carol Mackie\'
Daphne × burkwoodii 'C  
Did I mention that winter was unusually harsh?

We planted Daphne × burkwoodii 'Carol Mackie' last spring. As you can see from the picture, only a fraction of the stems have leafed out this spring. Also, two of the clusters are yellow—not a trace of green.

Are the bare stems probably dead, or could they recover next year?

Answer
Hi Janet,

Everything I read about this shrub says it's difficult to grow, and very subject to winter injury.  Take a knife or clippers and scrape the bark on the bare stems.  If there is any life left to them, they will show green wood inside.  Prune them back to live wood, and also cut the 2 that are yellow and foundering.  It must have proper drainage, or that tulip wouldn't look so healthy.  I would then fertilize it and pamper it through this summer - keep it watered, etc.  I think you're only problem is that it didn't have time to get established before the bad winter. If you can keep it alive for another year, it will probably be strong enough to survive another bad winter.  Even if it dies back, it will have developed a root system that will send up fresh shoots from the ground.  It may not bloom well after bad winters, though.  Don't give up on it - plants are very adaptable, and the longer it lives the better your chances are.  Here is a link I found with good info.

http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderDetails.aspx?kempe

Thanks,
Susan

Horticulture

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Susan Tabor

Expertise

Entomology,plant pathology, agronomy, native plants, useful and edible plants,medicinal plants,landscape design and installation, plant taxonomy and identification, cultivars and varieties, Botany, nutrient deficiencies, plant recommendations and troubleshooting.

Experience

35 years as a professional horticulturist and landscape contractor. I have a network of contacts at leading universities and with acknowledged experts in the field. I've restored the landscapes of several plantations, 2 Governors mansions and owned/managed 3 nursery/garden centers. I discovered a new subspecies of Emelia in 1997. I've locally introduced several native or volunteer species into mainstream landscape design.

Publications
Morning Advocate The Register Better Homes and Gardens All Experts - Approx 1996-97

Education/Credentials
Louisiana State University - horticulture David L. Hoffman - California - phytotheraphy

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