If you took advantage of the recent warmth to plant some flowers or veggies, Tuesday night’s freeze could set you back to square one. Until now, all those little plants have grown up in green houses, now they’re going to be exposed to a withering dose of chilly temperatures.
For our metro areas along and North of I-10 our last freeze is generally in early March. But on the morning of March 26 we could have one of our latest freezes in the past fourteen years.
“Grandpa said you don’t plant anything before Good Friday you don’t mind replacing.”
Sage advice from Ernie Wilkerson at Laura Kay’s nursery. He spent the day trying to save his inventory from the chilly temperatures. Most of the delicate plants he moved back into a greenhouse the same place where these plants began their lives away from the elements.
“All the pretty things everybody is buying is greenhouse grown so they’re tender. They’re not used to the freeze if they did they’d look like everything in your yard already burnt or dead,” Wilkerson said.
If you have already planted some little flowers or vegetables hopefully you saved the plastic pots. Wilkerson showed us how they can save your seedlings.
“If you’ve already planted your tomatoes you can take and put a pot over it and put it down good so the wind blow it off,” Wilkerson demonstrated.
Wilkerson showed us how the pots will hold the ground’s warmth.
“So the heat’s going to come up like a little greenhouse and it will trap it and the frost will hit the pot and not get on my plant,” Wilkerson said.
Wilkerson told us a good watering will also help, not only to hold in warmth, but also to keep the delicate plants from drying out in the stiff north wind.
James Miles from the Extension Service told us flowering fruits like peaches and blueberries could also be affected by the cold. If you can, protect those as well.
One other tip: many of us have brown sago palms in our yard. Wilkerson said not to worry, they’re not dead. Just go ahead and cut them back and the will leaf out again as it warms up.