A Chick Does Tropical Garden

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Winterizing!!! It's True!

Winter, 2009 (No, it isn't snowing here right now!)
Well, here in the Houston area you would not think that we would need to winterize.  Au Contraire!  We do get below freezing here.  And, last year was a real bugger, with a very harsh snowstorm that destroyed many a plant!(See photo.)  However, most of my plants came back, with the exception of the angel trumpets I had in the ground, the plumeria I had in the ground, and a couple of my pygmy date palms.  My potted plants survived because I spent endless time bringing them into the garage and out again, or covering with plastic -- which in itself was a pain in the youknowwhat.

This year, instead of traipsing out in the cold and wind and moving my pots inside, I have devised a new way to winterize.  Since many of my plants already sit under the awning and under the posts of my arbor, I went to good old Home Depot and bought several 9'x12' blue tarps with grommets.  Then, I also bought some hooks.  My son and I went outside yesterday (it was a beautiful day, mind you, with no freeze in sight), and drilled some holes into the awning overhang and screwed the hooks in 36"  apart, as that is the width apart of the grommets on the tarps.  Now, when I know it is going to get cold, I will just grab my ladder and hang the tarps onto the hooks, and then will have to secure the tarp to the ground (probably by placing it under the edge of a pot) and made sure that the tarps don't fly around (because typically when we have cold here in Texas, there is also wind.)

I will now need to do this with my arbor...any plants not under one of these protective coatings will need to be moved under one of them, but that's a whole big much better than moving them into the garage.

I'm also going to get some rope to tie them up -- kinda like a roman shade -- for the days when it's supposed to freeze again that evening.  I'll let you know how that works out!

ONE WORD OF CAUTION:  When you do put tarps over your plants, DO NOT leave them on during the day after the freeze if it is hot outside and warms up.  The tarp will act like an oven and cook your plants.  If it does stay frozen, make sure that the tarps are AWAY from the plants and that there is air circulating underneath them.  You do not want to lose your plants this way!



GROOVY COOLNESS GADGET


T.K. Goforth is a musician and author of the well-received book "Chord Piano is Fun!" She also writes a music blog called "Chord Piano Chick's Mostly Musical Musings.
Chord Piano Is Fun

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T.K. Goforth is a musician and author of the well-received book "Chord Piano is Fun!" She also writes a music blog called "Chord Piano Chick's Mostly Musical Musings.
Chord Piano Is Fun