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gsytch

Persistent Cold Air in Florida

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Davidl

Walt as you know Moore Haven is flatter then flat but there are a few places that are higher than others. My yard is not in a flood zone but everybody to the south,west,east of me is and they get frost at a much higher rate than me. A fellow worker lives 10 blocks away from me and he is at a lower elevation. His yard gets frost when I don't have even windshield ice and his temps are usually a few degrees cooler. I believe the cold sinks in those places and spares my yard many times because of elevation. Thank God for some helps. Of course when we get an advective freeze all is different.

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gsn

Well big bodies of water don't seem to help me much here in Titusville!!! I don't have any altitude!!! And I'm latitudinally challendged!!! :lol:

The Indian River is pretty close and a fairly big body of water , the Atlantic not far away. I will admit that Merritt Island does recieve benefit from being in the middle of both, but doesn't seem to help me much here.

Oh well I'm accepting it finally, I just might be the second coldest spot in east central Florida after Brooksville!!! Now if I could only figure out how to grow Trachys here :mrlooney:

Dropped below freezing at 3:30 AM didn't get above freezing until 8:30 AM , 2F degrees LOWER than forecast!

Low of 30.2 F

Edited by gsn

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JayW

We hit 29.7* this morning and so far, zero palm damage. My 6' Bizmarkia still looks perfect after less than 1 yr in the ground. Yesterdays high was only 46* and today, as of now, we sit at 52* and sunny. It's supposed to be just a bit colder tonight. My Sabal Minors, Sabal Palmettos, Silver Saw Palmettos, Sabal Lisa's, Needle Palms, Windmill & European fan palms should all do ok... that's one reason I picked those palms, as they all seem to be pretty cold tolerant. My biggest concern being the Silver Bizmarkia. We hit 24* last winter, but that was before I bought it. BTW, I live in Polk County, between Auburndale and Lakeland, and I'm out in the country, no trees, just wide open field.

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gsn

Jay ,

Your a man grounded solidly in reality, in your ZONE, unlike me... :)

With the exception of your Bizzie, with your inventory, your good down to about 15F, or posssibily even lower!!! :winkie:

Edited by gsn

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gsytch

I teach in Hudson, LOTS colder than me. It hit 21F on campus last winter, and the Bismarckia there took a hit but came back like a trooper come srping. They are truly hardy palms. It is going to get much worse come this weekend. More freezes predicted. Except for Thurs brief warmup, Fr-Sun are COLD COLD 50/30. This is a LOOOOOOOOONG cold event. I've been here since '88 and easily the coldest event. Its been colder for a night or two, but this is getting ridiculous! I want to move somewhere warm...Greg who had 33.6F this morning in the open back with some light frost; 34.1 in the tree covered front without frost. <_<

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Paul The Palm Doctor!

Bad omen: Maxed out at 59 F. here in western Ft. Lauderdale region. That spells lower 30's overnight. For how long I don't yet know but it will burn the leaves of quite a few real tropical plants. Tomorrow will be worse than tonight I feel.

What can one do other than to manage the results of nature's gifts be they desireable or not. In this case, of course, it's a "not." We've dealt with other freeze spells; we'll survive this also (but with a few dead palms, or lousy looking palms, until summer's re-birth of new fronds!)

Be well all and best wishes to you & your landscapes!

Dr. Paul

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Paul The Palm Doctor!
I teach in Hudson, LOTS colder than me. It hit 21F on campus last winter, and the Bismarckia there took a hit but came back like a trooper come srping. They are truly hardy palms. It is going to get much worse come this weekend. More freezes predicted. Except for Thurs brief warmup, Fr-Sun are COLD COLD 50/30. This is a LOOOOOOOOONG cold event. I've been here since '88 and easily the coldest event. Its been colder for a night or two, but this is getting ridiculous! I want to move somewhere warm...Greg who had 33.6F this morning in the open back with some light frost; 34.1 in the tree covered front without frost. <_<

That's why I bought my 50 acres in Bocas del Toro Province, Panama! I think I'll be safer down there. If it freezes at 9 degrees north of the equator, then I'm out of the palm hobbyist "game!"

Paul

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Walt

The high temperature today just outside Lake Placid, Florida, was 58 degrees.

Yesterday's high was only 50 degrees. Further, at 4:30 P.M. yesterday the temperature was 46 degrees; but today at 4:30 P.M. the temperature is 56 degrees. Yet, the weatherman says tonight will be colder than last night. Colder air will have to push down during the night for that to happen, I would think.

The real horror is for Wednesday morning. My local weatherman is calling for a low of 26 degrees high ground -- and 21 degrees low ground!!!! I certainly hope it doesn't drop that low at my place. If so, it would be an all-time low temperature record for me, along with and all-time palm and tropical plant, shrub, etc., devastation record.

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krishnaraoji88

My lows seem about the same as David's in Panama City. After seeing leaf damage on my S. shizo x roman F2 I just decided to say screw it and dig all of my smaller palms out (the more cold sensitive ones).

-Krishna

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BobSDCA
We hit 29.7* this morning and so far, zero palm damage. My 6' Bizmarkia still looks perfect after less than 1 yr in the ground. Yesterdays high was only 46* and today, as of now, we sit at 52* and sunny. It's supposed to be just a bit colder tonight. My Sabal Minors, Sabal Palmettos, Silver Saw Palmettos, Sabal Lisa's, Needle Palms, Windmill & European fan palms should all do ok... that's one reason I picked those palms, as they all seem to be pretty cold tolerant. My biggest concern being the Silver Bizmarkia. We hit 24* last winter, but that was before I bought it. BTW, I live in Polk County, between Auburndale and Lakeland, and I'm out in the country, no trees, just wide open field.

Jay,

My Bizmarkia in Palm Springs took down to 27F for a few hours in 2007. It was planted that year and didn't even miss a beat! The silver form is suppose to be hardy down into the low 20's once established!

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BobSDCA

These predictions seem all over the map, but I suppose as Walt brought up that microclimate has a good part to play in all this! Our canyons here in California can collect cold air and become cold air dranage areas where freezing temperatues pool for long periods of time. From my front yard to my back yard is only about a 20ft. grade change, but because the cold air drains in that direction I usually have a 1-1.5 degree drom frop front to back.

What also caught my eye with these predictions is that Miami may hit 38F Tuesday night and may not get into the 60's that day! How long has it been since cold weather hit this far south (Miami Area)? I can imagine all the inhabitants of Miami just fit to be tied right now! I was down there a couple of years ago in early April and a front came through...dropped the temperatue to around 50-51F at night. The next morning everyone was walking around all bundled up like we were in the arctic! All I could think was this was fairly normal for a cloudless night in early April for San Diego! Go figure!

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SunnyFl
Now I'm really starting to believe in coastal proximity as opposed to pure lattitude.

Better to have both and end this nonsense!

Let me just give my opinion about latitude. When I first moved to Lake Placid (actually outside the incoropated town limits), an elderly lady nursery owner (who originally moved up here from Miami) told me that on radiational cooling nights it's actually warmer in Lake Placid (up on the Lake Wales Ridge) then inland areas 75 miles to the south. These areas are off the the Lake Wales Ridge; hence, cold air drains and settles there.

If all other conditions, topographical features, etc., are equal, then I submit the farther south your location, the warmer it will be. That would be the qualifier. But we know empirically that points/areas in proximity to large bodies of water (E.G. Gulf, Atlantic Ocean, Lake Okeechobee -especially the southeast side) are warmer, at least on radiational cooling nights than points inland much farther south.

Every winter I seem to learn more about the climate in my immediate environs. While I knew altitude was a major factor in a given location being warmer during a radiational cooling event, as opposed to locations in lower areas, this past January 2009 really proved the point to me.

With respect to my immediate surroundings, my property is in a low area. Up in town (just 1-1/2 as the crow flys) is 70 feet higher in elevation. I can state empirically that this difference is worth a full USDA hardiness zone during radiational cooling events.

Further, I believe (as it applies here deep inland on the Lake Wales Ridge), altitude/elevation is even a greater factor, with respect to higher nighttime temperatures on radiational cooling nights than lake side locations.

In January of 2009 I had back to back nights of 27, 23.5, and 27degrees. My zone 10 palms and shrubs were devastated. I drove around many lakes and the same plants were freeze/frost damaged, but to a much lesser extent, except the same plants at the back of the homes nearer the lakes. The lake effect, say within 100 feet of the lake protected the plants (palms, shurbs, etc.).

However, up in town, I found absolutely no freeze/frost damage whatsoever. I also drove along US 27 to other higher elevation locations outside of town and again, I saw no damage.

This was also the case back on January 5, 2001, when my all-time open yard low (during a radiational freeze) dropped to 22 degrees. I drove up into town and was flabergasted, as I saw no damage, yet my garden was turned to mush.

Also, during the 23.5 degree night I had last January, I noticed tropical foliage (pothos vines, philodendron scandens, etc.) I have growing up tree trunks, freeze damage stopped at around 30 feet above the ground. That indicated to me how the air was stratified, and that while it was 23.5 degrees at 5 feet above ground, it was probably just over 30 degrees at 30 feet above the ground. Hence, the the town being 70 feet in elevation higher than at my place, it was probably in the mid 30s to low 40s. Regardless of what the low temperature was in town, there was no damage to the foxtails, coconut palms, royals, D. lutescens, etc.

In the 12+ years I've lived here, I only saw damage up in town once, and that was from an advective freeze back on January 23 (I think) 2003. The damage was mostly dessication from the high, dry north winds, and not freeze damage per se. At my place, down of the Lake Wales Ridge's east side, there was virtually no damage that night, as my location as well as the trees surrounding my property reduced the wind speed. I recorded a low of 29.5 degrees that night.

Had I of known then (when I bought my property) what I know now, how important elevation is out here in the deepest Florida pennisular inland, I would have bought my property on high ground. But at the time, palm and tropical growing wasn't even a consideration for me. Further, 90% or more of cold events here are radiational in nature, so high ground is the place to be. What advective events we have are mostly less cold, wihile the following night or two are colder radiational events.

I think immediate lake front locations (on the largest lakes, due to their thermal effect and inertia) are the second best place to be. But lakefront land is 10 times the cost, not to mention the yearly property taxes.

Well-said Walt! I personally think this should be read by every tropical plant enthusiast - it sums it up perfectly.

IF all other things are equal then latitude is the definitive factor - but things usually aren't equal. Elevation can be a life-saver for your tropicals - just one drive down 30th Ave. last winter (about 10 min. south of us) showed how cold can slide down the hill with unpleasant results. The adonidias up here on the Disston Ridge were slightly damaged - some not at all - and the ones down on 30th melted. And I'm only speaking of those not under canopy - comparing apples to apples.

Over in Pinellas Park - again, downhill from us - one morning I saw icicles hanging from shrubbery, when there was nothing like that up here. (Interesting note: a block from the frosty bushes, there stood a 10-12 foot tall dypsis lutescens - beautifully trimmed - showing no damage at all.)

For instance, we are at a much higher latitude than western Broward - and were we not surrounded by water on 3 sides, we would fare much worse than they do. Last night, some inland locations (I think in Hillsborough) reported the upper 20s. In my yard, my low was 35 in the unprotected northern front yard - 38 in a warmer area near the house.

Sometimes I wish we had bought a house two blocks south - which is uphill from us - but OTOH due to (ahem) "other" problems, it's probably better here.

This cold is so prolonged that now I believe it's even outdone the 1980's in terms of duration (but not yet in terms of temperature). And there's no end in sight! There are intimations in this evening's NWS Discussion that this cold spell will be followed by another arctic blast. Even for areas that don't freeze, there is the sheer length of the cold, without the quick warmup, that can be very bad for tropicals. And there's the possibility of occasional frost to make matters worse. "Just different levels of bad" as Sig Hansen said.

and Larry, you are right - it would be best if we could have both latitude and proximity to water. thinking that key west would be about perfect :winkie:

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gsn

Well at 7:00 PM here it is already 39.6 F, it is going to be a LONG night!!!

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Dave-Vero

And 43 at Vero Beach, no better than inland or northern areas. Not good at all. And we're likely to get as cold tomorrow (Tues.), Wed., with frost Thursday morning. Freezing again Friday and Saturday nights.

This is different from having a plunge down into the mid 20s. The nightly temperatures are typical for a winter here, but having four or five freezing nights is really unusual. The begonias worry me.

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PalmatierMeg

48.9 under the front awning and it's only 7:30. The heater in the shadehouse keeps temp there at 61 so far. I've pulled out the flannel sheets from Goodwill. Tomorrow I will cover the small palms in the shade garden as the low then will be 34. I don't want to risk forecast being too high. This disaster looks to carry on thru next Wed. with scarcely a breather.

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Alicehunter2000

Walt, very interesting read that makes alot of sense. I am curious about the canal/pond that is behind my house. If the cold air sinks there (its 10-13 feet below my upper yard but I have queens that are planted within 2 feet of the water.....will the water offset the cold sink? It probably is not a large enough body of water, but it didn't freeze around the edges and I would think that there should be some warming effect from even a small body of water?

I'm really looking forward to our new property when we build...it is on a very high ridge and its located less than a 1/2 mile to the Gulf and within 1/2 mile to a large lake (Lake Powell) on another 2 sides. Surrounded on 3 sides by water and at a good elevation......just another reason I can't wait to move.

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JayW

Hopefully my Bizmakia will do ok... tomorrow morning is supposed to be cooler, sounds like 27* or 28* will be the low, guess we will see. They are now saying 29 for Tampa this weekend! We're usually 5*-10* cooler at my house then the temps in Tampa. Surely we won't see low 20's or high teens! I though we were supposed to have a warmer than usual winter due to El Nino??? :unsure: And I thought last years 24* was a fluke! We had a total of 5 days in the 20's last year with 3 of those days being in a row, with lows of 26*, 28* & 29*

DSCF9127-1.jpg

BTW, it's 39* right now at 7:48pm

Edited by JayW

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gsytch

Jay - I was here in 1989 when they closed I-75 N of Gainesville due to ice and snow. I have pics of snow falling here in SW Pasco on my car and on palms. It was 23F here for 2 nights in a row, and 9F in Archer. This is 2 years in a row with long cold events and persistent cold air. TOLD EVERYONE

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Walt
Walt, very interesting read that makes alot of sense. I am curious about the canal/pond that is behind my house. If the cold air sinks there (its 10-13 feet below my upper yard but I have queens that are planted within 2 feet of the water.....will the water offset the cold sink? It probably is not a large enough body of water, but it didn't freeze around the edges and I would think that there should be some warming effect from even a small body of water?

I'm really looking forward to our new property when we build...it is on a very high ridge and its located less than a 1/2 mile to the Gulf and within 1/2 mile to a large lake (Lake Powell) on another 2 sides. Surrounded on 3 sides by water and at a good elevation......just another reason I can't wait to move.

David: I wouldn't expect much benefit from a small pond or narrow canal, although physics would dictate it would have to be better than no water. But by how much, I couldn't say.

I say this for two reasons: First, from my observations of cold damage last January, only in proximity of large lakes, did I really see any meaningful thermal benefit, i.e., undamaged zone 10+ palms, shrubs, etc.

Second, I read in some University of Florida literature concerning cold protection that a lake must be at least one acre in area before any reasonable thermal benifit is realized. And then there's the matter of the lake's water temperature.

With this protracted cold spell, cloudy days, etc., (although today was sunny), the water bodies are growing colder due to less sun radiation, and also the transfer (loss) of more water heat into the colder arctic air passing over it.

Take the Gulf of Mexico along Pinellas County, for instance. In early winter the Gulf water temperature is still relatively high. When the cold fronts come down across the Gulf the air is tempered/moderated, and nighttime lows are relatively high compared to inland areas at the same latitude. But as winter wears on and the Gulf water temperatures continue to drop, the thermal effect (benefit) of the water becomes less and less.

I recall about five or so winters ago the Gulf water temperature off Pinellas County dropped into the high 40s (I think I am correct on this). At this point, proximity to the Gulf wouldn't have near the benefit as it would when the water was well into the 60s or 70s, during the late fall, early winter months.

One downside to living in proximity to the Gulf, in the winter when the water cools way down is, when the wind is coming off of the water daytime highs can be held way down.

Yes, there's always seems to be a negative tradeoff to most anything!

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Alicehunter2000

Doh! Walt......you and your dam physics and logic and stuff......I just want to know everythings going to be ok.

post-97-1262660056_thumb.jpg

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Walt

SunnyFl (I will call you now by your forum name -- unless you object, of course!): One weather website I consult (and I consult many of them) is FAWN http://fawn.ifas.ufl.edu/)

The FAWN weather stations have thermometer readings at 60 centimeters, 1 meter, and 10 meters. On some radiational cooling nights there's a big difference in temperature from 60 cm to 10 ms.

One night last winter, during a radiational cooling night, I was checking numerous FAWN weather stations, and many of them had 7-8 degree temperature differences between 60 cm up to 10 ms (just over 30 feet above the ground).

What really surprised me was the Belle Glade station. At one point during the night there was actually a 14 degree F difference in temperature between 60 cm and 10 meters. But this didn't hold through the night by any means.

But what really puzzles me is, that other radiational cooling nights, sometimes, there's very little difference between the 60 cm and 10 meter readings (at night).

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Alicehunter2000

Walt the link isn't working............does it show weather data for the entire state?

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Walt
Walt the link isn't working............does it show weather data for the entire state?

David: I checked my own link and sure enough it was broken. I don't know what's going on.

In any event, just type FAWN on your browser, the Florida Automated Weather Network will come up. These are mainly rural weather stations, used for the growers and agricultural folks.

The FAWN station for Sebring, Florida, is not in Sebring at all, but in the boondocks about five or miles south of Sebring.

Here's a photo I took some years ago of the Sebring FAWN weather tower:

1532603481042496162S600x600Q85.jpg

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epicure3
Looks like something more for the southern part of the state....here's the link. Interesting about the altitude numbers.

http://fawn.ifas.ufl.edu/data/latest_observations.php

I think what is very interesting are the soil temperatures. Do they ever get that low? I would imagine that it would be weeks of cool temps to get those low soil temps. Maybe it's just that they are at 10cm which is pretty shallow. I measure mine at about 1' which is closer to the root structure of palms.

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SunnyFl

Just.

Lovely.

:hmm:

"AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TAMPA BAY RUSKIN FL

909 PM EST MON JAN 4 2010

.UPDATE...THE TEMPERATURE FORECAST WILL BE DIFFICULT FOR THIS

EVENING. RIGHT NOW.

SKIES ARE CLEAR AND WINDS HAVE BECOME

LIGHT. THIS HAS ALLOWED TEMPERATURES TO FALL INTO THE LOWER TO

MIDDLE 30S AWAY FROM THE COAST FROM HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY NORTHWARD...

BEFORE DAYBREAK...STRONG COLD AIR ADVECTION WILL

SET IN AND DROP TEMPERATURES BACK TO NEAR OR BELOW FREEZING AGAIN....

THERE IS SOME CHANCE THAT WE WILL SEE SOME LIGHT PRECIPITATION

RIGHT ALONG THE COAST AS THESE CLOUDS MOVE IN FROM THE GULF.

CURRENT FORECAST SOUNDINGS DO NOT SUPPORT SNOW"

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mnorell
It's in our blood to stretch growing zones from 11 to 10 and 10 to 9 etc. The cold events like this one upcoming, are relatively infrequent so we can take a bit of encouragement knowing that. I really hate the aftermaths of these freeze events too, but I hate more the barren landscape after the cold is over for another year! I just save up enough to replant and have a landscaper do the planting (because my back is still terrible from the auto accidents) and enjoy everthing "back in place" by July 4th Weekend. Fortunately, we humans have a short memory, otherwise there are many things we redo, even after we say we will not repeat!

Dr.Paul

Well stated, Paul! I've spent the last two days doing additional mulching, pulling plants and seedlings into the greenhouse and into the house, etc. Nevertheless I'm sure there will be losses outside but I will happily replant as necessary in the spring. One just can't get too attached to certain plants, as hard as that is to do. If I lose my big Bizzie I may be very unhappy after several successful years in the ground, but I will probably grab another and replant because it's such a stunner...in any event I have Sabals, Trachies, Butias, xButyagrus, Rhapis, Livistonas, Phoenix, Chamaedorea radicalis & microspadix, et al. that should pull through with at most some manner of leaf-damage. As you say, there will be the unhappy period of having to look at that aftermath. But I've gotten used to having that to some extent all winter since we have a number of frosts and freezes each year.

I think it must be harder for all of you in Central and South Florida since a perpetually growing garden is the assumption. Plus your damage can be, I think, worse degree-for-degree (at least for some plants) than for those north of about the 55-degree January isotherm, since our constantly chilled landscapes go into suspended animation for three months and harden off pretty nicely during their dormancy. I'm used to buying fresh Ixora, Allamanda, Crossandra, Codiaeum, Pachystachys, etc. every March and April, because it helps me get through that "grow-back" period while some of the previous years' specimens struggle back up to a nice appearance again. On the other side of the coin, have you ever noticed that Sabal and Rhapidophyllum are actually quite beautiful palms? And of course they are just as beautiful after a nasty freeze. I love these plants now! Honest injun!

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FRITO

official low for Tallahassee last night was 23, but in town temps were 25-26.

cloud cover rolled in and is keeping temps above freezing now- at 12:15 AM its 35 degrees. I think we will be "ok" long as this cloud cover stays.

highs around 46 for the next few days.

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JayW
Jay - I was here in 1989 when they closed I-75 N of Gainesville due to ice and snow. I have pics of snow falling here in SW Pasco on my car and on palms. It was 23F here for 2 nights in a row, and 9F in Archer. This is 2 years in a row with long cold events and persistent cold air. TOLD EVERYONE
I remember 1989 quite well... we had power outages it was so cold! We saw teens that year here in Polk County! I've been telling people for years that our cold weather would more than likely return, we've had 20's for the past 3 winters now... before that, we had a stretch of several years where we didn't even really have a freeze at all. I'm a Native to this area and I also remember when it snowed here in 1979... strange for sure! Maybe we'll see some more snow in the future? :blink: It would be kinda neat to see it again... it's been 33 years since I last saw snow! B) Edited by JayW

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Alicehunter2000

I remember the 79 snow as well. My fox terrier had puppies a few days before and we made a little snowman that we scraped together and stuck in my parents freezer. We actually had accumulation on the ground and kept the snowman for years.

This morning is bitterly cold with clear skies, still a little bit of wind and no frost. Temperatures hit 25 degrees early this morning....started seeing some damage to the philodendrons selenium? Elephant ear varieties have already melted, Banana varietys....melted. Started seeing damage to the cateract palms, Hibiscus have not started showing signs, but I'm sure they are next. I'm sure my 1 small Majesty may be toast....even though it is covered and in a protected area. All my other palms.....most importantly my Bizmarkias and Queens will be tested......no cover (too windy)....will update on cold damage section in the coming weeks.

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spockvr6

Winds stayed from a fortuitous direction much of last night, so the anticipated freeze didnt occur. Low of 39.9F at 810AM.

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cfkingfish

Screw it, I am moving to Brazil. Gileno, can I sleep on the beach outside your Sirenhaem place?

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gsytch

Larry- Same here. I woke up to 40.1F. However, its overcast and not going up now and its windy! This is ridiculous. This has been my winter break and we go back Friday, so it has been a waste. I had hoped to get so much done outdoors, but that didnt happen because I HATE THE COLD and dont go outside when it is like this. I might have well gone up to NJ and visit family! lol Greg

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fastfeat

I was supposed to go out to Milton, in Santa Rosa Co, last Sun, but the trip, fortunately, was delayed. NWS forecasting 16F there tonight--yikes!

Hope it doesn't get as bad as it sounds.

For once, I'm glad I'm in LA...

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PalmatierMeg

45.7 out front at 8 a.m. The temp was dropping 1* per hour until about 1 a.m. then stopped. Apparently, clouds moved in from the Gulf and stopped the forecast plunge to upper 30s. But here's the kicker: we had a rain shower during the night. Our cars were wet and streets damp after sunrise. This is the first time in 16 years here I've known it to rain when temps were in the 40s. It almost never rains below 60F. But I'm glad for those clouds which saved my in-ground tropicals for one more night. However, projected low for tonight is still near freezing.

Today started out sunny but now (11 a.m.) at my office near the water it is now cloudy and breezy. Before I left for work I hosed the ground in the shade garden. When I cover plants tonight I hope the evaporating moisture will keep the temp up.

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falcon1988
45.7 out front at 8 a.m. The temp was dropping 1* per hour until about 1 a.m. then stopped. Apparently, clouds moved in from the Gulf and stopped the forecast plunge to upper 30s. But here's the kicker: we had a rain shower during the night. Our cars were wet and streets damp after sunrise. This is the first time in 16 years here I've known it to rain when temps were in the 40s. It almost never rains below 60F. But I'm glad for those clouds which saved my in-ground tropicals for one more night. However, projected low for tonight is still near freezing.

Today started out sunny but now (11 a.m.) at my office near the water it is now cloudy and breezy. Before I left for work I hosed the ground in the shade garden. When I cover plants tonight I hope the evaporating moisture will keep the temp up.

just hope that the clouds remain over head that will help keep the temps up I already covered my smaller palms and so far pinellas is out of the freeze warnings just prey this next punch isn't bad

or just miss us. All I can say is. I am completely over this.

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ThunderSRQ

Although I don't want to "jinx" things, we did have a major reprieve here last night. The evening weather forecast from the Tampa station was very bad -- calling for a fairly hard freeze (27 - 32 degrees for a 4 to 6 hour duration) all the way south to Lee County -- even though the National Weather Service forecast has remained in the 35 to 39 degree range for each night throughout this event (it's very odd how the different weather services are forecasting such a variable range of temps for this event -- ?). However, when I went outside around 1:30 AM (expecting "the worst"...), it didn't feel "bitter" at all and, when I checked the temp at the near-by Wunderground.com personal weather station, it showed that the temperature was 42.5 degrees and had actually increased about 2 degrees since midnight (I'm sure due to the cloud cover moving in).

When I got up this morning, it was 43 at that personal weather station and the Sarasota airport was reporting 51 (I'm about half-way between these two stations) -- BIG difference from the previous evening's forecast. I did have very light frost on Monday morning (low of 35 or 36 degrees) -- as far as I can tell, it was only on my windshield since I didn't see any leaf impact at all on my tropical hibiscus and the banana tree leaves are still solid. The worst day so far was Sunday when the high here only hit 47 -- however, it may struggle to get/stay above 50 again today if the cloud cover remains all day (and then the forecast is for 34 to 36 degrees tonight so not much warming up at all for a 24 hour + period).

I piled damp mulch up high around the bases of all the small and/or sensitive palms I put into the ground this past year (most are under oak canopy), covered those in exposed areas and/or the ones that are possibly more susceptible to the long-term cold, and have brought in more and more potted stuff each day since Saturday so my garage looks like a forest right now (the Carpoxolyn and my maroon leaf Areca vestiaria were brought in yesterday as a result of Christian's recommendations here -- thanks...). At some point, I'm sure I'll end up bringing my Tahina spectabilis, Cyrtostachys renda, and Verschaffeltia splendida indoors, as well (just kidding... :rolleyes: -- those are in my "40 degree group" and are the first to see shelter from any cold event/risk).

Just my two cents worth for now...

Tim

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tank
I remember the 79 snow as well. My fox terrier had puppies a few days before and we made a little snowman that we scraped together and stuck in my parents freezer. We actually had accumulation on the ground and kept the snowman for years.

This morning is bitterly cold with clear skies, still a little bit of wind and no frost. Temperatures hit 25 degrees early this morning....started seeing some damage to the philodendrons selenium? Elephant ear varieties have already melted, Banana varietys....melted. Started seeing damage to the cateract palms, Hibiscus have not started showing signs, but I'm sure they are next. I'm sure my 1 small Majesty may be toast....even though it is covered and in a protected area. All my other palms.....most importantly my Bizmarkias and Queens will be tested......no cover (too windy)....will update on cold damage section in the coming weeks.

Dave,

Keep your chin up. Your palms should be OK with these temps, even the majesty, if not a little burnt. The duration of this cold is scary, but the temps aren't, at least for what you've listed. Last year's freeze was much more of a concern for me because we had freezing temps at ~4pm the afternoon before, with the duration of the freeze over 12 hours, getting down to 20F. Even at those temps, my 15ft queen and 4ft Bizmarkia showed damage on only the older leaves and looked fine by late spring.

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FRITO

Slow to warmup here after recording 26 at the airport. however some local weather stations on the north side read 23-24 degrees.

all my bird baths and goldfish ponds were frozen again. lots of wind blew off my protection to my Bismarkia and L. saribus(it just opened a new leaf I dont want to get damaged)

the container ranch is to large to move it all, the hardiest stuff stayed out but all the 1 gal and 3 gal pots are frozen solid! the pots feel like concrete block in the shade.

currently 41 degrees at 1 pm. high supposed to get to 44

Edited by FRITO

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amazondk
Screw it, I am moving to Brazil. Gileno, can I sleep on the beach outside your Sirenhaem place?

You can put a hammock up by the chicken coop at our place up the river and take care of my palm trees if you like. The nights are always nice for sleeping out there. It is never to hot nor too cold.

dk

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