WSU Extension

Hortsense

Common Cultural : Frost injury
(revision date: 4/30/2013)


Biology
Frost can damage new growth and flowers in the spring. Severity and distribution will depend on stage of plant development and where plants are growing; low-lying areas often act as frost pockets. Symptoms may develop some time after exposure and typically include wilting and dieback of affected tissues. Damage is most often seen to buds, flowers, and at stem tips, where tender young tissues are more susceptible to injury.
Management Options

Non-Chemical Management
  • Cover susceptible plants prior to frost. Light-weight floating row cover fabrics are one option, but blankets, cardboard boxes, newspaper, or other materials may also be used. Remove frost covers when the temperature moderates. Frost covers left on plants long-term can create moist conditions that favor disease development.
Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

Chemical Management

None recommended

Images
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Caption: Flower bud damage on rhododendron
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Caption: Frost injury on plum
Photo by: R.S. Byther
Caption: Narcissus yellow bands
Photo by: R.S. Byther