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Tree Injuries Caused by Low Winter Temps

Even though trees enter a vegetative or dormant state during the winter months, they are still subject to damage from extremely cold temps. The extent to which a tree can withstand extreme cold depends on the a few key factors; species, the quality of the root system, and the drainage ability of the soil. If the soil does not drain very well, the roots are more likely to freeze.

Frozen roots may cause the perceptible parts of the tree to wilt or die the following summer. Trees are even more vulnerable to cold damage when they are in containers or above-ground planters.

When the above-ground tissues of the tree are damaged by cold, this typically means that the species is not hardy enough to survive in that climate.

A tree will also be more vulnerable to winter chill when the autumn was unusually warm because the tree will have continued to receive nitrogen fertilization for a longer time.

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