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Re: Mike & George

Message from Jim Wilmington DE 7a

>> IOW and IMHO, sometimes the fact that a given plant is not seen where you area may possibly be due to the fact that it was tried at some point but was NOT planted right and taken care of correctly--and if it actually had been treated right you might indeed have had a good hardy plant for your area???? <<

100% right.

But this whole topic is one where there is no narrow "right" or "wrong."

I planted a Live Oak where I work. It is going into its 9th winter in-ground. It has been truly bulletproof for me. Not even tip dieback in the worst of the winters it's experienced. Yet, for all that, it is a species not rated to this area and virtually never seen north of the Delaware beaches, and rare even there. Local nurseries do not carry it. Yet, all I've known of this tree is that it's aces here. It's true that in the previous 8 winters it's gone through, it has had none colder than 7a. Yet, by 7a's very nature, over time, such an area can fully expect to see 6b, 6a, and maybe even the rare 5b winter (which this area saw in the 80s). Maybe my Live Oak's cold tolerance peters out somewhere between 0F and -15F. The reason I think it's rock solid here is because it hasn't REALLY been tested with sub-zone cold.

But anyway, so far, so good with Live Oak here. A species not at all recommended for this area.

I'm sure there are others. Ron has documented some wonderful, mature specimens of rare BLEs planted on the grounds at the University of Delaware in 7a Newark. I've seen a good many (but not all) of the UD collection. They are an inspiration.

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