Minnesota Winter Tips to Avoid Salt Damage to Your Plants

With the snow that we have obtained so far, which has practically disappeared, a few layers of salt and sand have been deposited on the roads in our area to help people get around. Sand and salt, while helping people and cars get around, can also damage your plants and shrubs near the road. The University of Minnesota has some helpful tips for preventing or mitigating the effects of salt and sand on your plants and shrubs.

One thing you can do to help reduce the effect of salt on your pants or shrubs is to wrap the base of the shrub / plant with a burlap material, loosely so as not to damage the base. plant, but tight enough to deflect most of the salt spray that can rise from the road from a snow plow pushing snow or cars driving over snow / sand / salt.

The University of Minnesota has also indicated that plants are not recommended near roadsides or sidewalks where salt is used to defrost / melt snow. If you want plants / shrubs in these areas, the University of Minnesota recommends plants of a “more bountiful” nature, such as:

Ohio Buckeye, Austrian Pine, Ginkgo, Locust, Black Walnut, Black Hills Spruce, Jack Pine, White Poplar, Locust, Japanese Lilac, Black Cherry, White Oak, Northern Red Oak

Many times if you see the bottom of your evergreen tree turning brown and it is in the area where it sees salt, it is likely that it is too late for your plant / shrub. The plant turns brown because the salt “damages the roots” and “the plant absorbs the salt” causing damage to the foliage.

If you have any further questions on how to keep your plants healthy this winter, you can visit the University of Minnesota Extension Office website.

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