Coming Back

“Coming Back”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana

While we all are sure that spring will return and many dormant plants will awaken with warmer temperatures, it is those marginal plants that have died back in the cold weather that have us holding our breaths. It seems that it has been so much colder just about everywhere this year. I know that I have had plants that have never had any trouble coming through our winters with its occasional freezes die back completely or have damaged leaves this year. However, there are signs that even these plants seem to be coming back.

The agapanthus, which has never had any damage before, took a pretty good hit from the late December freezes. Thankfully, it is starting to show new leaves emerging. I don’t know if there will be flowers this year, we’ll just have to see.



The lemon balm that I have had in a container for about ten years, is coming back also.



Finally, I noticed that the mint growing in a large container is sending out new leaves. This was another plant I was surprised was damaged. It has come through so many winters without any freeze damage.



Our temperatures this winter did not get that cold (mid 20’s) which isn’t unusual here, but the cold did last for 12 to 15 hours which is very unusual and we had five days of this. Normally if we get hard freezes, they usually don’t last but 4 to 6 hours before the temps are above 32. This year’s freezes over many hours and several days is what has knocked so many plants back. I am still looking for other signs of life around other plants. I am hoping most everything will come back.


  1. Jake said,

    February 10, 2010 at 2:12 am

    It is very sad to think that your Agapanthus may not bloom this year. I think it might however since the type that can live in areas colder than yours bloom yearly.


    • Jan said,

      February 10, 2010 at 5:30 am

      One good thing, Jake, is that these are big, established plants. It has been my experience that when plants are established, they bounce back from cold damage fairly quickly. I am hoping for blooms this summer, but never having had these damaged before does add a little uncertainty.

  2. FLA. Judy said,

    February 10, 2010 at 5:27 am

    My garden is slowly coming back too. This has been a cold winter for us in the South.

    • Jan said,

      February 10, 2010 at 5:30 am

      Yes, Judy, I agree that it has been a lot colder than we have been used to this winter.

  3. Nell Jean said,

    February 10, 2010 at 8:06 am

    I think your agapanthus will bloom. Mine, here in a slightly colder zone, always gets nipped back — Nipped? It gets killed to the ground! It bloomed nicely last year after being killed back. I’m hopeful for both of us.

    • Jan said,

      February 10, 2010 at 4:38 pm

      Thanks, Nell Jean. That is encouraging.

  4. Miranda Bell said,

    February 11, 2010 at 3:49 am

    Hi Jan – thanks for your lovely comments on my blog – you obviously have similar plants where you are to here but I must admit my agapanthus are looking much sadder!! The Lemon Balm is pretty hardy and never seems to fail to come back like the Mint!! Have woken up here in Brittany, France to yet more snow this morning… this isn’t normal! Take care Miranda

  5. Lana said,

    February 11, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    I LOVE lemon balm…smells so good & so great to cook with! It’s sleeting here this morning. We may have to go to Arkansas this weekend (where it’s already snowed & more is coming.) I’m not looking forward to the trip…

  6. Melody said,

    February 11, 2010 at 5:10 pm

    I am worried about my agapanthus too. I moved them year before last. Then the river behind my house flooded and they were under water for a couple of weeks last spring. They came up but no bloms. Now this winter, we are having all these cold temps. The HIGH tomorrow is supposed to be 38 here in North Florida and the low tomorrow night is supposed to be 28:(

  7. February 13, 2010 at 8:20 pm

    Jury is still out on my agapanthus – we went to 13 F so this will be a very iffy spring! Yours are making leaves, Jan – think they’ll bloom for you out of gratitude for surviving!

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

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