Damage from frost was slight in this garden. Caladiums and heliotrope shriveled in the cold (as the gardener should expect when these are left outdoors), but there was little injury to flowers of azaleas and hydrangeas. The freeze the next night was a different matter.
Flowers of Encore azaleas wilted, and blue hydrangeas (above) turned brown in twenty-eight degree overnight temperatures. Both have buds that are likely to flower in milder temperatures that are forecast, and I would not be surprised to see a few azalea blooms next week.
Surprisingly, toad lilies (Tricyrtis, above) and asters (Aster tataricus ‘Jindai’, below) show no evidence of the cold, and this afternoon the aster was swarming with butterflies (moths?) and bees. Curiously, most often I see abundant bumblebees on the asters in early autumn, but today there were none.
I read today that an El Nino weather pattern will bring mild temperatures for the next month, and after two miserably cold winters I would not be bothered if this pattern remained until March.