B. Rosie Lerner
Purdue Extension


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Where Have All the Flowers Gone?

flowering cherry
Flowering Cherry, no blooms, May 2014
flowering cherry
Flowering Cherry, late foliar bud break, early May 2014

While some spring flowering trees and shrubs performed admirably this season, some species had few or no blooms at all. In addition, some plants were so late to leaf out they had many of us concerned that they had died overwinter.

Some shrubs such as forsythia flowered only on the lower branches, where snow cover provided good insulation. While it is still possible that these plants may continue to show effects of the harsh winter, most should recover and return to normal blooming next year - assuming reasonable weather.

Forsythia blooming, lower branches only, 2014

We recommend conservative pruning to remove only dead branches and conserve as much foliage as possible, so the tree can maximize leaf area for photosynthesis to aid recovery.

(photo credits, Rosie Lerner / Purdue Horticulture)






Writer: B. Rosie Lerner
Editor: Olivia Maddox