What Plants Need Winter Protection? How Can I Protect Them?



WHAT'S HAPPENING IN MY LANDSCAPE?


Just as we close one year and start the next, the temperature outdoors nose dives into the mid- thirties in New Orleans. You might start asking yourself, are you suppose to cover your plants? Will my citrus survive? What should I do once it warms up?


Here is where you start.


Protecting Plants

When the local weather forecaster instructs everyone to protect their plants, exactly what are you suppose to do? What gets covered and what is the best way to do so?


Covering plants for frost truly requires a 2 layer system. A fleece/cloth type fabric needs to be placed over the entire plant and secure the cloth/fleece with twine or cord. Then place an outer layer of thick plastic and secure with twine or cord. This method will make sure that the outer layer of plastic does not touch the foliage directly.


If you use a single layer of plastic, the plastic rest directly on the foliage causing the foliage to wilt. In addition to the foliage wilting, often a single layer of protection doesn't provide a "greenhouse effect" and the plant materials dies.


Recommended Materials for Covering Plants

  • 30 mil Plastic Sheeting

  • Fleece Frost Blankets

  • Heavy twine

  • Tomato Stakes - helps to create air gaps around plants


What Plants Need To Be Covered?

  • In New Orleans, covering plants takes time to protect your favorite plants.

  • Citrus Fruit Trees

  • European Olive Trees if temps go below 18 degrees

  • Tropicals- Gingers, Iris, Agapanthus, Tractor Seat, Ferns

  • Season Color: Petunias, Alyssum, Begonias


What Plants Do Not Need to Be Covered?

  • Azaleas, Camellias, Gardenias, Hawthorne

  • Jasmine- Climbing & Groundcovers

  • Liriopes, Mondo Grass

  • Perennials


Additional Landscape Care To Prevent Freeze Damages

Watering- Water Helps with Dehydration

Thick Layer of Mulch - Protects Roots

DO NOT PRUNE AFTER A HEAVY FREEZE

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