Winter Ready: Plant Protection

Winter Ready: Plant Protection

            This weekend Texoma is gearing up for the first freeze of the winter, and plant experts warn we're not the only ones going to be affected by the lowering temperatures.

     Your plants will also need protection from the cold.

     “With this freeze only tropical plants need shielding from the cold, but there are some plants you could be planting now,” said Katherine Smith the owner of Smith's GardenTown.

            “It's a great time to plant trees and shrubs, and you can still plant perennial plants, the ones that are going to die back in the winter and come back in the spring,” said Smith.

            Chair of the Biology Department at Midwestern State University, Dr. Bill Cook explains why some plants can't survive during the cold temperatures.

            “Plants, like animals, are mostly water, so when it gets cold the water can freeze and when that happens it destroys cell.”

            This is why protecting the roots is a must.

            “You’re most interested in saving the root system because the root system doesn't have quit the potential to regenerate as the shoot system,” said Dr. Cook.

            Watering your plant and then adding three inches of mulch should protect those roots.

            The reason this is necessary is because water looses heat slower than air, and the mulch will hold in that water.

            It may seem like a lot of work, but to keep your plants alive, these measures are worth it.

            Your tropical plants will be in danger once temperatures drop to 32 degrees, so you want to cover them with a light blanket or a frost blanket.

            For those plants you cannot cover, group them together and place them in a garage or under your carport so they can have a little heat.

            Remember plants are worth it and so are your pets, so do not forget to bring them inside as well when those temperatures start to drop.