Tonight's freeze

bluehaven_gweb(8)April 14, 2014

How are you all preparing for it? I have some vegetable seeds which are just sprouting? And small plants already planted. Worried about them.

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gardenper(8)

Use some old or even buy some cheap blankets to cover them. Since they are seedlings that you don't want to crush with the blanket, you might want to put sticks in the ground and then put the blanket over them as a kind of tent. Hold the blanket down by putting heavy materials at the edges.

You can also use actual plant blankets such as the planket or burlap.

Cover the potted plants or any tender new growth with the same material.

I also realized that my BBQ grill and bench on my patio actually provide a good setting to put my potted plants between them, then drape the blanket over the grill and bench to provide them the large coverage for many pots at the same time. Even setting out the lawn mover and using the push handle as one of the sources of height would be OK.

Newspaper is also a good insulator if you can get it around some plants or seedlings. I line some old plastic pots with the newspaper and then turn the pot upside down and put the pot over the seedling/young plant. Hold it in place with a rock in case it gets windy tonight.

I am also going to try some of those exterior water faucet protectors. I only have 2 faucets but somehow ended up with 6 protectors (either on sale or I forgot where I had the previous ones I bought) so I'll try that out on a few young plants and see how it works, though I expect it should be OK. It's not breathable like a blanket or newspaper but it will be on just over night. I'll try it on some plants that are not as special to see how it goes.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 1:32PM
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linda_tx8(8)

Barely dipped below freezing here last night at 31.8ð. I'm hoping it's the last time this spring.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 1:11PM
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denisew(z8 TX)

I only had a couple things that needed protection last night, so put some stakes around the plants and dropped some towels over them - used clothes pins to hold them in place. This morning I removed the towels and all was well.

I did have a good laugh when I drove to the post office in Allen and noticed an older home that had sheets and blankets over all the shrubs across the whole front of the house.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 4:47PM
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gardenper(8)

According to the weather estimate, it was going to dip to 32 or 31 (chill factor) just for about 1-2 hours, so I'm not sure how horrible that would have been for plants. I did wait to do my front yard covering at night, mostly for my specimen plants, so that I wouldn't be the one laughed at in the neighborhood like denisew is doing :-)

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 5:31PM
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Perylene(7b TX)

It dipped below freezing here for a few hours, so I'm glad I covered up my butterfly plants and my vegetable garden with a bunch of frost cloth. I have a bunch of swallowtail and monarch caterpillars on milkweeds that are okay, but for some reason one tomato (Bella Rosa) was damaged pretty badly while all the neighboring tomatoes look unfazed. Go figure.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 9:37PM
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lucas_tx_gw

Seems to have killed all my 'maters even though DH dutifully covered them for me, I'm traveling.

He texted me photos, they look like goners :-(

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 9:38PM
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wantonamara Z8 CenTex

I have not uncovered my tomatoes yet. I had plasting coke things on them and mulch over that. I am keeping them on tonight also. My cow peas looked alright. They just had mulch.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 10:03PM
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andbowen(7b/8a DFW TX)

If this does happen again - try filling a plastic jug (2 liter bottle/milk jug/juice container) with very warm water, and put it under the cover with your plants. It releases the heat through the night as it cools and helps to warm the plants.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 3:35PM
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centexan254 zone 8 Temple, Tx

I just uncovered most of my plants a few minutes ago. So far nothing killed. Several set back. A few look sad. The hail storm a few weeks ago did the most damage to the ones that look the worst right now. I am hoping that everything is going to bounce back in time to get some tomatoes, and peppers before the heat sets in.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2014 at 3:36PM
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