Green County Master Gardeners Association

For more information on our Master Gardener program please visit our web by clicking this link.

Drought and Watering of Ornamental Plants

02. Jul, 2012

An updated version of a UW-Extension drought and watering of ornamentals info sheet has been recently published.  This information applies to many in the southern part of Wisconsin where rainfall has been scarce this growing season.

In response to drought conditions, some of our woody ornamentals, both native and exotic, can start the annual fall leaf defoliation a bit early during prolonged drought conditions.  Leaves can also turn brown and curl on the edges and drop in mass quantities, particularly on species such as linden, birch, dogwood (red twig, yellow twig, pagoda, and Corneliancherry dogwoods), and hydrangeas.  What can we do to help plants handle this dry situation?  Water!

For recently planted trees and shrubs (within this growing season or last year’s season), watering is crucial for survivability.  Since these plants do not have an established root system or adequate water storage potential, they must rely heavily on what is provided to them either from rain or from supplemental watering.

Read the Drought & Watering publication with water calculation tables.

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones for Wisconsin

USDA plant hardiness zones are used to select perennials, landscape plantings and fruit trees that will survive over winter in your location. Check the color of the section in your area on the state of Wisconsin map. USDA Hardiness Zones and Average Annual Minimum Temperatures are also included on this site.

Soil Sample Testing Available

Fertile soils are the foundation for a healthy lawn and productive garden. Getting your soil analyzed to know what you have to work with is often the first bit of advice given to anyone starting a new lawn or garden or trying to rejuvenate an existing one. Testing soil about once every three is usually adequate. Getting the soil analyzed is one thing, but interpreting the numbers and understanding the basis for recommendations based on those numbers is another. Read more information about USDA Plant Hardiness Zones for Wisconsin (.pdf).

For Horticulture Help:

  • Call the Green County Extension Office to be directed to a Master Gardener. Phone: 608-328-9440
  • Go to the UW-Extension Publications website to read and/or print publications
  • Visit the UW-Extension Office and review bulletins, fact sheets, and other printed resources
  • Visit area landscape and garden centers and other businesses
  • Use the related Horticulture Links below to find more information…
Support Extension