• 57°

Freeze warning prompts action for tender plants

SALISBURY — The National Weather Service has added a freeze watch to its earlier freeze warning.
The freeze warning is in effect from 11 p.m. tonight through 10 a.m. Wednesday. The freeze watch is for midnight to 9 a.m. Thursday. Temperatures will drop into the 20s by Wednesday morning and into the low 30s Thursday.
A warning means sub-freezing temperatures are highly likely. A watch means sub-freezing temperatures are possible. The Weather Service says these conditions could kill drops and other sensitive vegetation.
Darrell Blackwelder, director of the Rowan County Extension Service, offers these tips for people who may have started their gardens or put their plants outside:
Frost and cold damage depends not only on how cold it gets, but the duration of the cold temperatures. There may be little one can do in some instances; however, homeowners may reduce potential damage.
Physically protecting the plants gives some degree of protection. Burlap, sheets or blankets can be used as a protective cover. Garden centers now have spun fiber materials designed especially for frost protection. Coverings should extend to the ground in order to retain heat lost from foliage and the ground.
If you use plastic, make sure it does not touch the plant’s foliage. While plastic is ideal for trapping moisture and heat radiated from the soil, it can create additional problems unless it is removed during the day or covered to prevent temperature buildup. The extra heat, at best, will speed up growth of buds, making them more susceptible to a late frost. In some instances, tender new foliage can be cooked from the high temperatures that build up under the plastic.
Commercial nurseries, vegetable and strawberry producers irrigate to prevent frost damage. Some may also use protective row covers in addition to the overhead irrigation. Constant irrigation during freezing weather keeps plants at a constant temperature, protecting buds, flowers and fruit from serious damage. Commercial growers have special frost-proof nozzles and the ability to pump water for many nights if necessary. This is a complex and costly method of frost protection and is not recommended for homeowners.
Darrell Blackwelder is county Extension director, Rowan County Center, North Carolina Cooperative Extension; 704-216-8970; www.rowanmastergardener.com, rowan.ces.ncsu.edu, www.rowanextension.com

Comments

Comments closed.

Crime

Concord man charged with woman’s murder in drive-by shooting

Ask Us

Ask Us: Have city, county elected officials received COVID-19 vaccine?

Local

City gives away nearly 100 trees during ‘We Dig Salisbury’ event

Local

Political Notebook: Bitzer expects most ‘Trump-like’ candidate to be favorite in state’s Senate race

Crime

Blotter: Concord man arrested in Rowan for indecent liberties with children

Coronavirus

Half of US adults have received at least one COVID-19 shot

Nation/World

Police: FedEx shooter legally bought guns used in shooting

News

Hester Ford, oldest living American, dies at 115 … or 116?

Local

Size of pipeline spill again underestimated in North Carolina

BREAKING NEWS

Kannapolis Police searching for suspect who fled scene of homicide

Education

RSS superintendent talks district’s future, strategic plan survey

News

Complaints and fines pile up against unpermitted landfill in southwest Rowan County

College

Catawba baseball: Crowd comes out to say goodbye to Newman Park

Lifestyle

History is a great teacher: Farming has helped shape Rowan County

Business

‘A safe place for them’: Timeless Wigs and Marvelous Things celebrates fifth anniversary

China Grove

County will hear request for more tree houses, hobbit-style homes in China Grove

Coronavirus

Livingstone College partners with Health Department to administer 500 Pfizer vaccinations

Education

‘Elite and it shows’: Staff at Partners in Learning at Novant celebrate news of national accreditation

Business

Biz Roundup: Food Lion earns Energy Star award for 20th consecutive year

Columns

Ester Marsh: What body type are you?

Nation/World

The queen says goodbye to Philip, continues her reign alone

Nation/World

Worldwide COVID-19 death toll tops a staggering 3 million

Nation/World

US, China agree to cooperate on climate crisis with urgency

Nation/World

Sikh community calls for gun reforms after FedEx shooting