Experiencing a probably false spring... Anybody else?

digitS'

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If you are really concerned about growth, I would. Here is the national February temperature predictions:



It doesn't look unusually warm. Two things about my ideas, I'm not very experienced with pruning fruit trees having few over the years. I've never pruned in January! It was late February 2020 and about the earliest ever.

This would be a good question for @SprigOfTheLivingDead . He was just here commenting on strawberries. There are others here who should be able to make good suggestions.

Steve
 

bobm

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We haven't trimmed are four trees yet, and as I mentioned earlier, they are budding. Should I attempt to trim anyway?
You live in Idaho, I live in SW Wa. so weather conditions are probably similar .... I start pruning after the trees go dormant and the sap slows way down and the soil is firm enough to hold me on a ladder without sinking into the ground. This task I can start in late Dec. throughout Jan. By mid Feb. the sap starts to flow and the buds start to swell. This is the time to spray a dormant spray on fruit trees. Here the earliest fruit trees start to bloom by Feb. 20th, Good luck ! :old
 

Zeedman

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Still cold here; it's been close to 0 F. the last two nights, and low single digits predicted tonight. Good weather to fire up the wood stove. Next week is supposed to warm up though, into the low 30's. Way too early to be thinking of an early Spring, I still haven't gotten over the record-breaking April snow storm that collapsed my patio two years ago.
 

SprigOfTheLivingDead

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January and February are usually the coldest and slushiest months of the year in my area. Normally we get at least a bit of snow, but we haven't yet.

Currently we are on a warm spurt (around me), and it has been going for a couple weeks now. The birds have started to sing, and I know for sure that it is much too early for the goldfinches and robins. This morning I found lead buds on a couple of my fruit trees and bushes.

I think this is a false spring. We still have a long February ahead, and this warm spurt can't last for long. I have heard that if fruit trees try to wake from winter, then it freezes again, the trees won't give off any fruit. Is this true?

How do you think this will affect the gardening season and wildlife? Is anybody else experiencing this?

It's maybe warmer than some times, but it's not like I want to go outside and hang out in a sweatshirt. yesterday was still a "real feel" of 4F and today it's going to be in the 20s, though again it will probably feel in the low teens. That being said I don't think we've had a day in Jan yet where the high was in the negatives, so this is odd. it's not unheard of, but it's not normal.

And yes, a false spring, if we go back into a deep freeze, will kill buds and lead to a lower fruit harvest.

If you are really concerned about growth, I would. Here is the national February temperature predictions:



It doesn't look unusually warm. Two things about my ideas, I'm not very experienced with pruning fruit trees having few over the years. I've never pruned in January! It was late February 2020 and about the earliest ever.

This would be a good question for @SprigOfTheLivingDead . He was just here commenting on strawberries. There are others here who should be able to make good suggestions.

Steve

If you're going to prune do it now. I need to get out there and severely go after a few of my older apple trees and thin out some of those branches to hopefully get better fruit and growth.
 
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WildBird

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what kind of trees?

are they small enough you can cover them?
Sorry, it auto-corrected for "fruit" to "four". We have over ten; lots of pears, a couple apples, a couple peaches, a nectoreen, and I'm sure I'm forgetting a few. They are all too big to cover.

You live in Idaho, I live in SW Wa. so weather conditions are probably similar .... I start pruning after the trees go dormant and the sap slows way down and the soil is firm enough to hold me on a ladder without sinking into the ground. This task I can start in late Dec. throughout Jan. By mid Feb. the sap starts to flow and the buds start to swell. This is the time to spray a dormant spray on fruit trees. Here the earliest fruit trees start to bloom by Feb. 20th, Good luck ! :old

It's maybe warmer than some times, but it's not like I want to go outside and hang out in a sweatshirt. yesterday was still a "real feel" of 4F and today it's going to be in the 20s, though again it will probably feel in the low teens. That being said I don't think we've had a day in Jan yet where the high was in the negatives, so this is odd. it's not unheard of, but it's not normal.

And yes, a false spring, if we go back into a deep freeze, will kill buds and lead to a lower fruit harvest.



If you're going to prune do it now. I need to get out there and severely go after a few of my older apple trees and thin out some of those branches to hopefully get better fruit and growth.
Thank you both for the info!
 

ducks4you

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We haven't trimmed are four trees yet, and as I mentioned earlier, they are budding. Should I attempt to trim anyway?
Budding/flowering can happen any time that the weather is unusally warm. Heck, we had a drought last summer. My Montmorency Cherry trees dropped all of their leaves. What was left was buds. I used a 100 gallon stock tank, filled it and unscrewed the plug enough for a slow drip at the drip line of each tree. I dosed them each about 7x, and they put on "new" leaves, which were really the leaves from buds for 2021. That is what your trees are doing, but don't worry. They should have plenty left for the season.
It is best to prune fruit trees when it is below 32 degrees F. You are pruning in this way:
1) ALL dead wood
You can tell bc it breaks when you bend it
2) No MORE than 30% live wood PER SEASON
3) Prune one of two limbs that cross, try to take out all waterspouts and suckers, and open up the inside of each tree for sun and ventilation during fruiting season.
Usually WE trim Late February-early March. Go to your closest Idaho University website for their AG Dept. They can tell you the best times to prune in YOUR area. :cool:
NOTE: PEACH trees are pruned mid summer. Go figure...
 

WildBird

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Budding/flowering can happen any time that the weather is unusally warm. Heck, we had a drought last summer. My Montmorency Cherry trees dropped all of their leaves. What was left was buds. I used a 100 gallon stock tank, filled it and unscrewed the plug enough for a slow drip at the drip line of each tree. I dosed them each about 7x, and they put on "new" leaves, which were really the leaves from buds for 2021. That is what your trees are doing, but don't worry. They should have plenty left for the season.
It is best to prune fruit trees when it is below 32 degrees F. You are pruning in this way:
1) ALL dead wood
You can tell bc it breaks when you bend it
2) No MORE than 30% live wood PER SEASON
3) Prune one of two limbs that cross, try to take out all waterspouts and suckers, and open up the inside of each tree for sun and ventilation during fruiting season.
Usually WE trim Late February-early March. Go to your closest Idaho University website for their AG Dept. They can tell you the best times to prune in YOUR area. :cool:
NOTE: PEACH trees are pruned mid summer. Go figure...
Very helpful! Thank you so much!
 

Messybun

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We had a little bit of a false spring too. I have broody hens everywhere and a few babies too!!! The wildlife seem to be doing fine though, hopefully no out of season babies.
 

WildBird

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We had a little bit of a false spring too. I have broody hens everywhere and a few babies too!!! The wildlife seem to be doing fine though, hopefully no out of season babies.
My chickens are trying to brood too! But I can't let them hatch or else the whole flock will go broody and I need their eggs for breeding!

Yes, let's hope the wildlife are smart enough!
 

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