Protecting plants during a freeze

Right ways to cover plants to keep them protected

By Ashley Mitchem - Reporter, anchor , Chris Robbins - Producer

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The Weather Authority says temperatures could dip in the teens by Tuesday morning so before the cold weather sets in, you'll want to make sure you're prepared.

There's of course your pets and your pipes, but also don't forget your plants.

Channel 4 spoke to a gardening center to find out the right way to cover your plants to keep them protected during freezing temperatures.

Chris Trad from Trad's Garden Center said you don't have to lose your plants to the cold temps -- it's preventative.

"Cover them somewhat of a teepee shape," said Trad. "I see all the time people covering their plants and just sort of covering their plants and tightening it off at the trunk and all they've done there is break the wind chill."

Trad demonstrated the correct way to cover plants and saying the tepee shape is important all the way around the ground to blocked the wind.

A bed sheet works just fine and you don't need to worry about covering your plants unless it's close to freezing, or 32 degrees.

If the temperature drops in low 20's or high teens you'll need to do a little more; get a heat source under the plant like a light.

"If we're going to stay under freezing for six hours or so you really need to try to get some heat under there," Trad said.

Also many of us have citrus trees. Those could see damage with temps below 20 degrees.

"If you are concerned about that, you want to build up heat around the root stock," Trad said

If you don't have much of a green thumb and you don't want to have to worry about or not to cover your plants, the best plant you could invest in is something native.

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