By Phran Novelli

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Look, don’t bicker about it. Do you have to go around cleaning the snow off your shrubs? No. Do I? Well, for some shrubs…I do.

Last year I mentioned that I use a cheap, soft, floppy broom to gently brush heavy loads of snow off of shrubs bent under the weight of it. My cousin Stephen asked me to stop saying so because he believes most shrubs bounce back just fine. And he makes a good point. Nature takes care of itself pretty well, and much of the time most shrubs will shrug off the snow and stand up straight again when it melts away.

On the other hand, a lot of the plants in people’s yards aren’t originally from this area, and they don’t always handle the snow as well as native plants do. Plus, every storm and every winter is different. So, if you have specimen shrubs, or some perfectly-pruned plants or topiaries that might look funny with a big hole in them when a branch breaks…you might want to help them out by very gently brushing off heavy snow.

Just don’t ask Stephen to help.