What to Do About Winter Kill in Heather Plants

Written by joshua tuliano
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What to Do About Winter Kill in Heather Plants
There are many species of heather, some of which can grow in winter weather conditions, but can be harmed by winter kill. (heather image by Renata Osinska from Fotolia.com)

According to New Jersey Institute of Technology website, there are hundreds of heather plant varieties, some of which blossom during the winter months. Although heather plants prefer cooler weather, harsh winter conditions can cause injury and plant death.

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Winter Kill

Heather plants use snow cover for protection, which does not harm the plant. However, severe winter winds and icy conditions can cause winter kill in heather plants, which is a condition in which severe winter weather causes damage to plants.


Heather plants prefer moist soil conditions, but can drown if too much water is applied. According to the University of Missouri Extension website, for heather plant growing vigour during the winter months, it is important to keep soil thoroughly moist before the winter months. However, avoid over-watering as it can cause plant death or stress.


Heather plants, affected by winter kill, can be revitalised by pruning dead areas after the last killing frost. According to the University of Florida IFAS Extension website, heather pruned after the last killing frost will revitalise during the warmer spring and summer months.

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