Wind: Another Challenge in the Desert Southwest

New Mexico is the only place I have ever lived where Spring is not my favorite season.  And that is because of the high winds that are a staple of Spring in the high desert.

Gardeners here learn very quickly to keep their plants well-hydrated, at this time of the year as much for the winds as for the temperatures.  Nothing can dry a plant out as quickly as the wind!

For the last several days we have had very windy weather.  On April 10, we had gusts up to 40 mph, but steady winds around 25 mph.  Not good for plants, especially tender young shoots on roses.  A lot of new leaves on my roses are looking a little ragged now, but the worst damage was to a new cane, which was snapped completely off:

(Click on thumbnails for larger view)

Cane snapped by high wind 4/10/07

The rose looked pretty bedraggled with the shoot just hanging there:

Wind damage 4/10/07

Fortunately, this is not the kind of damage that kills a rose. It can be frustrating to see promising shoots damaged so that they have to be removed, but the rest of the plant is fine.

Wind – just another challenge in the desert Southwest.

[ETA 4/14/07: Apparently wind was widespread across the entire Southwest, including California, at about this same time. For photos and discussion of damage in the high desert of California, there is an excellent link here.]