Positive effects of the winter weather

6:09 AM, Apr 4, 2013   |    comments
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By Heidi Glaus

ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - The calendar might indicate it's spring, but look around the Missouri Botanical Garden and well it's not exactly blooming thanks to those lingering low temperatures.

You know, the winter weather most of us have been complaining about, but the truth of the matter is we should actually be thanking Mother Nature.

"The plants really need this cold weather especially plants we grow here in St. Louis. They want that cold period, they need it to flower, to put on new growth for any seeds that need germinating," explains Sara Murphy, Outdoor Horticulturist at Missouri Botanical Garden.

Like it or not, the last couple of months are more normal for Missouri plants.

"And the snow is even better, it insulates the plants so instead of having that cold air surround it, it acts like an insulator against the cold air and then as it melts off the plants it heats up the plants," Murphy goes on to say.

All of this means we can expect our flowers to bloom longer. As for other positives, well we'll probably still see plenty of mosquitoes only it will be later than it was last year.

"If we have a good wet spring, good nice and warm that's perfect weather for mosquitoes to pop out so insects are very adaptable to weather conditions where they can increase numbers very quickly if need be," points out Ed Spevak, Curator of Invertebrates at the Saint Louis Zoo.

But there is a way to cut down on the number of them in your yard.

"So some of these mosquitoes will lay their eggs in something as small as a bottle cap. So making sure you don't have standing water in a wheelbarrow, in a bucket, in a planter, even in a old can," Spevak adds.

So there's the good, the bad and the ugly. Let's just hope we're finished with the ugly side of winter weather.

If you have a Hey Heidi question, email Heidi Glaus at hglaus@ksdk.com.


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