SFA Gardens deciding which plants stay, which ones go

WebXtra: SFA Gardens

NACOGDOCHES, Texas (KTRE) - At the SFA Gardens there are plants that look dead, but could be alive. You may have the same dilemma in your own yard. A wait and see game for gardeners continues in deciding which plants stay or which ones go.

SFA Gardens deciding which plants stay, which ones go

SFA Gardens director Dr. David Creech wants to learn from the unprecedented winter storm of two months ago. He and Texas A&M are researching, “What thrived, what survived and what died. We’re not touching anything that is a landscape plant until we get our data.”

The Ruby Mize Azalea Garden is open, but far from showy.

“Some plants have no damage. Look at the Japanese maples, they’re beautiful,” said Creech. “Some of our azaleas are frozen to the ground. No flash. No anything. And some of them are unaffected.”

Unlike the Gayla Mize Garden and Trails which remains closed.

“We’re not through with brush removal. That’s for sure.”

Priority, even over azaleas, has been getting rid of dangers on the ground and above.

“Being hit by a large limb is not a good thing.” >

The removal of fallen, old and dead trees required tree climbers and special equipment.

“We contracted with a tub grinder which is this huge machine that can take anything and makes it into mulch. And so we have a mulch pile the size of the pyramids. We’re set for years here.”

The mulch will be put to good use after the spring bloom. That’s when loppers and machetes will change the look of all SFA Gardens.

“Cut them off and regrow our azaleas that have been damaged. Some of them don’t need it. Some of them do. We got a new garden. It’s a rebirth.”

Dr. Creech says the selective tree removal will provide the gardens more light, allowing the landscaping plants to flourish over time.

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