Protect your tropical plants, trees from freezing temperatures

Temperatures are expected to dip below freezing Saturday night into Sunday morning.  Tree and plant experts say that means you need to make sure you cover your tropical plants, trees, and those that don’t do well below freezing.  

"If you have a lot of flowering plants in your yard, you might want to look up how cold tolerant they are," said Allison Palmer, who owns Palmer’s Plants and Goods.  "The monstera’s that people are liking now, birds of paradise, birds of paradise," she says freezing weather will kill those. 

Saturday Palmer and her staff will be busy moving plants into their greenhouse and covering the others that aren’t cold resistant. 

"We take all of our colorful plants that either are not frost-tolerant, or even if they are to protect them we put them on the trellis here, and we’ll take large pieces of frost cloth and protect the whole trellis," Palmer said.  

She recommends using frost cloth, sometimes known as "plankets" which are sold at plant nurseries and garden centers.  

"So the frost cloth is not heavy. So that’s why we recommend this. It can be left on a few days, so it’s breathable," Palmer said.  

Frost cloth is breathable, so Palmer says it’s safe to leave on for a few days.  If you can’t find frost cloth, she says you can use bedsheets, but make sure the sheet doesn’t have holes.  And, she says to be sure to remove the sheet as soon the weather gets back up above freezing.   

How you cover the vulnerable plant or tree is important Palmer says.  

"So literally you just cover the plant with it and take anything that will pin it down to create a whole greenhouse effect. You want to pin it down to the ground so cold air can’t get in, and it keeps the warm air trapped in there," Palmer said.

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