How to Protect Your Plants from a Spring Freeze
Well it won’t officially be spring for a week or so … but with the warm weather we’ve recently had, some of our plants are seemingly getting a head-start. I’m just keeping my fingers crossed that the Spring freeze in the forecast won’t do too much damage to all this tender new growth.
I know … many of you in other areas of the country are probably going … Whaaaaa-whaaaa! But here in the South, a Spring cold snap could really screw things up for us … just like a few snow flakes does to our driving!!!
But come on, who would want to see such quintessential Southern flowers, like the Nikko Blue Hydrangea, not have a chance to show off this Spring?!? That just ain’t right!
So to minimize the potential impact of late freezes to your plants & flowers … and mine … I’m going to share a few links that I found. They are all about: How to protect your plants from freeze damage.
Here are my quick take-aways … and it’s really quite simple:
- Cover your plants. You could use fabric, plastic, or even cardboard. Anything that will trap the radiant heat coming up from the ground.
- I use fabric (e.g., sheets and drop-cloths) because that’s what I have … and, besides, if fabric touches the plants it actually warms the plant vs. freeze them, like plastic would.
- If you do use plastic … 2 things: 1. use a stick or something to minimize the chances of plastic touching and damaging your plants further; and 2. make sure to remove the plastic in the morning before the sun bakes your plants. That would be bad.
- If you use fabric and rain is in the forecast, you will also want to use a stick or something to prop it up because the weight of the water-soaked fabric could crush your plant.
- Also, if you use fabric, make sure to remove it as soon as the temps get above freezing so that your plants can get the sun that they need.
- Regardless of if you use fabric or plastic, make sure to bring it all the way to the ground to seal in all the heat that you can … keeping it in place with a brick or dirt or rocks … or mulch.
- Make sure you cover your plants before it gets below freezing – you want the air that you trap to be as warm as possible.
- Feel free to double or triple-up on your layers of cover … the more layers the warmer your plants will be. Just make sure not to crush them under the added weight!
- Cardboard boxes or plastic buckets are also good for that smaller plants that can be contained under one.
- If your mulch is looking a bit wimpy, go ahead and beef it up before the temps start dipping below freezing … think of it as added insulation.
So that’s what I gleaned from my reading…but here are the links if you want to read more:
- WalterReeves.com: Protecting Plants from a Spring Cold Snap
- GardeningKnowHow.com: Protect Your Plants In A Freeze – How To Protect Plants From Freezing
- Teleflora Blog: 3 Ways to Protect Your Garden from a Spring Frost
- SFGATE: How to Protect Plants from a Late Spring Freeze
I hope this helps you keep your plant babies warm this week … so that your Spring will be as joy-filled as it can be.
Take care all,
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