Hail damaged plants
The heartbreak of gardening is a harsh lesson, but don't give up on your garden! It's still early in the season and there's plenty of time to get new plants in the ground. Our vegetable plants are still inside greenhouses, big and healthy! Some plant are worth saving, but others are goners. There's no steadfast rule for hail damaged plants, so use your best judgement to decide a plant's fate. Here's a few tips for rejuvenating your garden:
- Keep as many remaining leaves as possible. If more than half of a leaf is intact, leave it and let it create energy for the plant.
- Remove broken and shredded leaves, stems and branches.
- Fertilize lightly. Liquid kelp, fish emulsion and compost tea will help the plant come out of shock and get back to growing, without overwhelming it.
- If you have nothing but stems left, replace your plants. Peppers and tomatoes take a long time to mature and new plants will do better than damaged, rebounding plants.
- Root crops with no foliage probably won't recuperate. Give them a few days to allow them to regrow. If they don't, pull them and plant again, keeping in mind how many days they need to mature.
- Remove flower stems and damaged foliage from perennials.