Record cold coming Monday

lsst(7b)January 4, 2014

I knew it would happen eventually but I was hoping it would not be this winter.

I am in Upstate SC and we are to be in single digits Monday night and low teens Tuesday night.

I remember the last time it was this cold was in 1985 at -2 F.
That year we lost Gardenias and some Southern Magnolias.

In the last 10 years, I have pushed zones by planting some zone 8 plants in my zone 7b garden. I hope the weather man is wrong.

I do remember an old experienced gardener telling me that his garden has experienced a hard cold freeze about every thirty years so the timing is close.

I will be bringing in some potted plants normally left out in the winter and also adding more pine straw to some plants in ground.

I also have to add heat cables to some exposed pipes around my pond.

Is anyone else preparing your plants for the record cold? Any tips?

This post was edited by lsst on Sat, Jan 4, 14 at 14:48

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zzackey(8b GA)

I'm in the same boat. 15 degrees predicted for our low Monday night. We only get that cold every 7-10 years. We were spoiled with many days in the 80's in December. This will be s major shock. I have all of my plants inside I want to save. My house looks like a greenhouse. My biggest concern is my mustard greens, collards, rosemary, strawberries and broccoli. I will cover the strawberries well. I'd hate to lose them. The rest we plant to harvest as much as possible before the freeze. Pray hard is my only tip.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2014 at 4:41PM
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I did not think about my strawberries! One more thing to add to the list. I definitely am saying my prayers!

I planted two Live Oaks ( Quercus Virginiana) about 6 years ago. I purchased them from a local nursery.
They are about 20 feet tall. I hope the cold does not kill them.

I will probably wrap lights and burlap around my Windmill palm.

The worst cold will be Monday night and should be around 20F Tuesday night.

Where I am it is predicted to be 8F with a windchill of -5F.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2014 at 7:09PM
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Removed duplicate post

This post was edited by lsst on Sat, Jan 4, 14 at 19:19

    Bookmark   January 4, 2014 at 7:17PM
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AH! Glad I read your post - I am in the Upstate too - I will cover my gardenia tomorrow evening. I would hate to lose it.

Hunker down friends! 9 degrees is cold for we southern folk.

From NOAA: Monday Night Clear, with a low around 9. Wind chill values as low as -1. Northwest wind 9 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 23 mph

This post was edited by LKZZ on Sun, Jan 5, 14 at 12:48

    Bookmark   January 5, 2014 at 12:45PM
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At 11:30 p.m. we are at 12 F. i would be happy if the temp stayed there!

I have done as much covering of plants as I can so I can only hope for the best.

I saw a news video for the SC Botanical Gardens at Clemson University. They had numerous plants covered with cloth and stated after tonight they may have to redesign their gardens due to frozen plants.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2014 at 11:37PM
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Well, we're finished with the cold. I'm in Travelers Rest, North of Greenville, and the low was exactly zero out in the yard at 6 am Tuesday morning. Monday night I put tarps over 4 garden beds that contained kale and collard, and picked all the headed cabbage. I let the lettuce I still had just suffer, and also the mustard greens, as those crops were mostly finished already from earlier cold and heavy use.
I left the tarps on all day Tuesday as the high wasn't supposed to be much more than 25, and removed them Wednesday. Those plants seem fine, and may have survived anyway, but I was taking no chances, as I've hardly started picking on them.
I see the Southern Giant Curled mustard I planted in the fall has been dying for weeks since I first had a 20 degree night. But the plain leaf, Tendergreen variety looks like it will still survive the more extreme cold this week. Something to remember!
I'm wondering if my fig tree is going to survive. It's been around for about 20 years. Any guidance on figs?
Best of luck.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 11:01AM
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Well, I guess I can just give up on these pittosporums I have been counting on providing privacy from.
I planted them (5) in front of my house in 2009 in September for privacy from the street.
Low and behold, in March of 2010 we got down to 19 degrees one night and when it warmed up I noticed at least two of them had split barks.
But, they lived, and for the last 3 years I ahve been taking care of them, and they aren't even 3 feet high yet.
Then Monday came.
Oh well, I guess I am just gonna have to see if they make it. The sad part is, even if they do, they don't grow height wise very good, and the privacy issue will not be resolved.
I also hope my gardenias make it.
I know I lost an African Iris, it already looks as dead as it will ever look.
They say (the news shows), we will see this frigid weather more often now, I certainly hope not.
Good luck to everyone, hope you haven't lost a treasured plant baby.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 3:27PM
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zzackey(8b GA)

I think the iris will come back. I never saw Pittosporum grow much. Holly makes a dense fast growing shrub. You can get one that doesn't have thorns on the leaves.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 4:03PM
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I hope the iris comes back, and thanks for the holly suggestion.
I think if these pittosporum don't grow much this year I just might buy some holly, or even plant the holly in back of them. That way, if the pittosporum grow, they grow. If they don't, I won't care.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 7:59PM
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We ended up at 5F Tuesday morning.

My Live Oaks are showing stress. My gardenias look O.K.

It appears all the Japonica Camellia buds are toast. I will miss the flowers this spring.:(

My Turkey Fig is too big to cover so it was on its own. I do not know how much damage it suffered yet.

All in all, it could have been much worse.

I hope everyone's plants recover quickly!

This post was edited by lsst on Sat, Jan 11, 14 at 22:39

    Bookmark   January 11, 2014 at 11:16AM
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jcalhoun(8b Mobile County AL)

Mobile was 17*F for Monday and Tuesday nights.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2014 at 2:20AM
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Round 2 -Friday morning is supposed to be 11F.
I hope the prediction is wrong and it turns out to be warmer.

Right now the temp is holding at 22F.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2014 at 12:27AM
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I'm sorry, I feel like I can take responsibility for this one. I made the mistake of telling my friends how happy I was because I felt prepared to keep my garden going during any normal North Carolina winter. Naturally, what we get instead is, "for the fourth time since World War II....".

I'm somewhat impressed though that according to my thermometers, it's 32 degrees at the side of my raised beds, but 37 degrees under the several inches of snow over a hoop of plastic. Pretty impressive for such a drab day. I guess part of the fun of being a new gardener is practical applications of stuff I knew more in abstract, like snow insulating.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2014 at 4:40PM
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