Tips for Protecting Your Plants in a Cold Snap

Cold-WeatherIt’s no secret that the past few days have been unseasonably cold. With relative humidity below 20 percent, San Diego has experienced freezing temperatures at night that endanger our gardens.

Nothing new for those folks back East! My colleagues in Boston deliver sub-tropical plants to offices using heated trucks and heated passageways from the back of the truck to the loading dock.

Temperatures below freezing can harm plants that are used to indoor temperatures. If they can do it in Boston, we can save our garden flowers and plants during this cold snap.

Here’s how to protect your garden from freezing over in the next few days:

  • Move potted tender plants indoors or into a warmer area. These include tropical hibiscus, plumeria, young or tropical fruit trees and bromeliads.
  • Lay old cloth or bedsheets over your outdoor plants and anchor the sheets by weighing them down with rocks or bricks. Keep the plants covered until the threat of a freeze has passed.  If the temperature rises enough during the day, you can remove the sheets as lonFrost-Protectiong as you keep an eye on the temperature at night, replacing them if necessary.
  • Add mulch to flowers and shrubs already planted. This will help the roots from freezing.
  •  After the freeze, do not wash frost/ice off plants the morning after a freeze. Let the ice fall/melt off naturally and make sure to add a bit of extra fertilizer to damaged plants come spring.

You stay warm too!


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