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How Cold Weather Can Affect Florida Plants

Florida enjoys warmer winters than most other states, but the weather still gets cold enough to damage plants. Subtropical and tropical plants are both at risk during the winter. Our expert team has some information for Florida’s gardeners this winter.

Plants at Risk This Winter

Chinese evergreens, dieffenbachia, and weeping figs don’t do well in cold weather. At temperatures below 40 degrees, the leaves can shrivel and turn yellow. Banana trees can also be harmed by the cold weather.

How Cold Weather Harms Plants

During cold weather, some plants can get dried out. In mild cases, the margins or tips of the leaves become brown. In severe cases, the leaves become entirely brown.

Root systems sometimes freeze too. This typically happens to plants in containers, not plants in the landscape. The injuries to root systems often aren’t noticeable until the weather warms up.   

How to Protect Your Plants

When you see cold temperatures in the forecast, take steps to protect your plants. Container-grown plants can be moved to warmer locations. If you have any valuable small plants in the garden, they can be dug up and brought inside in containers. Plants that can’t be brought inside can be covered with frost blankets or cloths.

During cold weather, keep the soil wet, but be careful not to overwater. Plants still need water when it’s cold out. Avoid using your sprinklers in below-zero temperatures since this can cause severe damage to plants.

Cold damage can take weeks to show, so hold off on pruning your plants. Once you see the extent of the damage, you can prune damaged areas.

During the winter, continue to mow your lawn regularly. Mowing the lawn removes new growth and helps control weeds. Avoid fertilizing your lawn until late February or March.

To continue gardening during the cold weather, consider planting hardy trees, shrubs, and groundcovers. You can also replace your warm season vegetables with cold season alternatives.

Florida’s winters can damage subtropical and tropical plants and even lawns. By taking some simple precautions, you can keep your plants healthy until the spring. If you need help caring for your lawn this winter, the Orlando lawn care experts at Apex are just a phone call away.

Apex Pest Control is one of the most trusted Orlando lawn care companies in the state. We’re proud of the work we do to help keep the homes, landscape, and businesses in our community free from harmful plants, insects, and animals, while also striving to maintain a balance with the ecosystem as a whole. Check out our blog or contact us today to learn more!

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