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Question: 897-913
I noticed a lot of buds this winter. Is this a result of global warming? Robert, Charlestown, RI

Mort's Answer:
Plants that bloom early like forsythia, PJM rhododendron and witch hazel set their buds in the fall. They may swell in a January thaw, which often happens in any growing zone. The USDA has recently upgraded the growing zones. Charlestown and other parts of the RI shore are now in zone 7A. There is a general movement of the lines northward. This is good evidence of global warming. It's not a bad thing for plants. It extends the growing season. You could grow watermelons for instance. We have seen more and more plants, like Mimosa, which are becoming hardy.

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