Freeze Delays Spring: Swingle CEO says Colorado lawn, tree and plant health care impacted

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Colorado lawns, trees and shrubs have been damaged by late season freezes so some plants and trees may not flower or leaf. Landscape care changes accordingly.

Denver experienced temperatures as low as 6 degrees...increasing risk of damage to annuals and perennials

Swingle Lawn, Tree & Landscape Care believes Colorado could be less colorful this Spring. Drought has been followed by April’s record-setting freezes in Denver, Fort Collins and along the Front Range.

“Many Colorado plants and trees are cold hardy to 15 degrees Fahrenheit,” said Tom Tolkacz, Swingle owner and CEO. “However, Denver experienced temperatures as low as 6 degrees at the Denver reporting station. Uneven snow cover limited protective insulation, increasing exposure and risk of damage to annuals and perennials.”

Some shrubs and fruit trees, Tolkacz warned, that had leafed out prior to the early April freezes may lose those leaves. While most will leaf out again later in Spring, some trees and shrubs that normally flower and produce fruit in the spring may not do so in 2013.

Colorado homeowners and commercial property managers should:

  • Wait until later in the day to do your lawn work. “Golf courses don’t open until the frost melts in the morning because frost itself doesn’t injure the grass,” Tolkacz advised. “Walking on the frost does.”
  • Take a “wait and see” strategy on trees and shrubs. “Most woody plants will leaf back out in May. Don’t be in a hurry to prune recently freeze-damaged twigs. If they are still pliable, give them a chance and prune the bare shoots in June.
  • Some early flower displays, however, may require replacement.
  • Watering—making sure to comply with Denver Water restrictions, fertilizing and insect control should be completed as usual.

“The drought, water restrictions and late-season freezes have created a unique challenge for Colorado landscapes,” said Tolkacz. “Now more than ever, we advise bringing questions about lawn, tree and plant health care to people and companies based in Colorado.”

About Swingle Lawn, Tree & Landscape Care
Founded in Denver in 1947, Swingle Lawn, Tree and Landscape Care has grown to be the one of the largest residential and commercial lawn service and tree care companies in Colorado, employing more certified arborists than any other Colorado company. For information please contact Vince Serio VSerio (at) MySwingle (dot) com (303) 337-6200 or visit

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