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Thread: Hard Freeze in Florida

  1. #1
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    Hard Freeze in Florida

    Ann- I saw you asked Tom a question about the faucets on the other thread & wanted him to see it so I posted here. When Mom said they might have a freeze, I just shrugged it off thinking nothing would come of it. Now I see that it is for real and maybe a hard freeze(Wed. night) ! She has Bromeliads and lots of succulents, a little palm tree, amaryllis and an orchid on her screened porch. I wish I had told her to tell her home health aide to throw towels or sheets over them. I don't want her going out there by herself. Maybe I'll recheck the forecast tomorrow and call while her aide is still there if need be.
    Years ago they lost lots of shrubs---ficus hedge, crotons,etc. I'd hate to see that happen. I would have to tell her to wait for my brother or me to help rather than becoming 'prey' for roving hired 'help'.
    And the poor citrus growers ! Although, all should be harvested by now but the trees could get damaged. Darn it ! I just remembered my Mom has a huge Mango tree and it had some flower buds way up top when I was there a few weeks ago.
    Let's hope for the best !
    http://www.palmbeachpost.com/localne.../0101COLD.html

    Here's one I never heard of...
    Farmers reserved helicopters days ago for use circulating warm air over the crops, said Dan Crowe, manager of Aircoastal Helicopters Inc. All of the Aircoastal helicopters suitable for the job had been committed, Crowe said Tuesday afternoon.

    Vicki- I just saw this: I hope you have power and let us know how you fared !
    http://centralkansas.cox.net/cci/new...alidatearticle

    "If I keep a green bough in my heart, a singing bird will come"




  2. #2
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    I think you have time and can wait until tomorrow. Check her local weather forecast as well and weather.com and accuweather.com.

    They all seem to be giving different forecasts for my area. Check the latest at accuweather:

    http://www.accuweather.com/forecast-...36695&metric=0

    I do hope this changes by tomorrow...
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  3. #3
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    Oh Ann, I pulled up the link: if the hard freeze does happen tonight, it sure will happen tomorrow night---sounds like you did all the right things !
    "If I keep a green bough in my heart, a singing bird will come"




  4. #4
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    Cathy,

    I have done all that I can do... Tonight is going to be the tough one.

    Your mother looks like she is going to do just fine, but a lot of the northern areas of Florida are busy protecting plants and crops. This is one strong cold front!

    Hanging in there...
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  5. #5
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    Yep, her forecast is low 30's though wind chill is lower. She's in zip 33458. From what I read, I think she'll be OK.

    Looks like you are in for a really cold spell---gee as long as it's going to get that cold, you might as well have snow to make it all worthwhile(and it will insulate your plants).
    "If I keep a green bough in my heart, a singing bird will come"




  6. #6
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    My thoughts exactly!!!!!

    At least the treat of rare snow would make this cold worth while...
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  7. #7
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    Cathy,

    Accuweather says 35 and weather.com says 37 for that zip. Both are not good because there is so much margin for error in microclimates.

    However, the good news is that her plants are on the porch. My porch is on the north side, and I have had tender tropicals do just fine at 29 degrees (this winter) with simple overhead protection.

    Auburn University has done studies, and it appears that the cover of pine trees even provides a few degrees of frost protection.

    Since I tend to live 'on the edge', I observe and learn more each year. One thing, for sure, if the accuweather forecast is correct for here, it will be a record low for this date.

    Just make sure your Mom is warm. I don't think there is much chance of loss of power, but that would be my biggest concern.

    On the funny side ~~ you would not believe how many times I have ventured outside (in my T-shirt) and forgotten to put on my jacket.

    I have one more potted plant (huge) that I will probably bring inside for this one night. It is a Casia (spell? I'd have to look it up.) I bought it on discount and it is in a huge, heavy pot. I'm waiting for Hunter to come home from his sleepover and hoping that he will help me haul it into the porch. It is one that desperately needs to go in the garden. Just haven't been able to do that, YET!
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  8. #8
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    Ann,
    I wrap my faucet in bubble wrap and then put on the foam cap. Seems to do the job. I hope it does tonight as we are at 14 with a 10 wind chill. Brr.
    tennessee sue

  9. #9
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    Brrrrr is right!

    You know you are crazy when...

    When in the sunny south, you go to bed early, awaken and look at the computer to see that it is 28 degrees at 10pm, and in your knit nightgown, you run to your bedroom to get the heaviest sweater you can find to go out to the greenhouse and check the temp. 55 degrees, not good, so I turned up the heat just a bit.

    The porch smells like kerosene, but what can I say? At least there is some ventilation out there. I turned up the heat just a little bit.

    The patio is holding at about 47 degrees. Not good, if it is going to get to less than 20 degrees by daybreak.

    We will see.. Anyway, my precious plants may not like being cold, but I doubt they will freeze.

    The alarm clock is set for 3am to check once again.

    I need to buy a heavy coat, but Why? This is NOT the NORM!!!!
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  10. #10
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    OMG!

    I slept late, and I am in awe. It is 21 degrees at almost 8am.

    Yes, I know that all of you must be laughing at me 'cause this is so unreal to me. And I am laughing with you, 'cause it is that unreal to me.

    Happy New YEAR!
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  11. #11
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    It is 39 degrees now. Some of the ice has started to thaw.

    I checked my unprotected 'garden' amaryllis', and they didn't seem to notice that there was a freeze.

    Of course, the huge branches of the southside brugs are squashy, so they will dry then be cut back.

    My Tibouchina was still green and beautiful, but it has melted and will also be cut back after drying.

    The south side subtropical hibiscus has melted. WOW! I did enjoy that one blooming for so long this year.

    Purple heart, melted.

    Japanese Maple, melted.

    Purple smoke tree, melted.

    Crinum, melted.

    Daffodils, fine.

    Paperwhites, fine.

    Hydrangeas, melted.

    My remote thermostats were destroyed during the hurricane. I intend to replace them this year. At least, I would know how low it actually got. At this point, they are saying it was 21 at the airport which is about 5 miles north of me, and I suspect that in my little valley it got down to around 18-19 or less.

    Still, everything is fine! Please do not laugh at me. These are extremely low temps for me, and I am just glad that I was here instead of at work.

    Check back with y'all later!
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  12. #12
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    Ice ?

    I'm sorry about all your melted plants, it sounds like what we get with a late freeze. I wonder if they will be set back as much as by a late freeze(in early spring) since it is still technically 'winter'. Interesting how spring bulbs(daffs, paperwhites) can take the cold. In fact, tulips can really take the cold.

    Mom was worried about the Christmas cactus that I had bought her as it was out on the screened porch table. I didn't want her going out there alone(worried about her walking) and told her that it wasn't supposed to get that low. I checked the temp there on the internet this morning around 6:30 AM and I think I saw 37(hopefully that was real time which I failed to verify), but that tempearture is just fine.

    It was very cold here last night--low double digits. My dog refused to come in and insisted on sleeping on the glider. I was sure her ears would freeze and fall of LOL! But, being an Elkhound, she has a thick fur coat and probably wasn't any 'worse for the wear' !
    "If I keep a green bough in my heart, a singing bird will come"




  13. #13
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    Christmas cactus will usually do fine as long as the temperatures are above freezing. When it gets down to 32, they will start melting.

    The melted plants are no problem. They come back every year.

    I was anxious to see how well the H. Johnsonii did at school since my school is always warmer than here. Most of the leaves melted, but I see that a few actually survived.

    Today was teacher work day, and Hunter did not have to go to school. He was with friends.

    I am not ready for school the start again. The first two weeks will be hectic because there was a system failure and some grades of failing students were not recorded before new schedules were printed. That means I will have to deal with my failures being in my class for a few days.

    It's 55 degrees right now, and I hope we do not have to go through that kind of cold any time soon.

    Thanks, Tom, for the advice. No frozen pipes, and the well pump is working just FINE!
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  14. #14
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    First day back at school, and all went fine. Some of my students are the same as last semester (they passed), but most are new to me (different subjects, different class schedule). I had some fun worksheets for them to do (no textbooks - they have to be reassigned).

    I didn't teach as much today. I watched them work and tested their skill levels, observing individual work and seeing who was trying and who was doing nothing. I like it better when I teach. Time goes by faster... It was a LONG day!

    My classes are large again, but that is okay. I am sort of used to that by now.

    Temps are back into the 70's. Weather on the Gulf Coast is like a yo-yo, especially in the winter, but Cathy, I must admit that your temps vary more than any I have ever seen.
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


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