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Persistent Cold Air in Florida


gsytch
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6:00 PM and we are now at 32*... We should see 20's within the next hour!

34 here right now, and heading to 23. Good luck over there.

In my post I sometimes express "my" opinion. Warning, it may differ from "your" opinion. If so, please do not feel insulted, just state your own if you wish. Any data in this post is provided 'as is' and in no event shall I be liable for any damages, including, without limitation, damages resulting from accuracy or lack thereof, insult, or any other damages

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this coming Tue. the 12th will be my 1 yr "fireverssary" (my home burned down a yr ago). Its rather humorous, I do see the aforementioned analogy. Had more than a few neighbors mention the palms whist offering condolences (what will happen to them, are they ok, etc.). Apparently I am my neighborhood's crazy plant guy... Some perished, as some will this wkend. I've come to take these events as part of the journey, understanding that it is whats important, not the eventual end.

There are much fouler things howling around this earth than frost, if the wind stays up we will witness this firsthand I'm afraid. Based on my 16 yrs here I am less & less confident as the hrs go by. This reminds me of the all nite email marathons we locals used to engage in whilst the cold swirled about. Sh*t, now I miss my friends, or I'm drinking too much, not sure which ...

- dave

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Throw the FORECAST low for tonight out the window it is 1:20 PM here and my temps is 33.9F and still raining, has been below 35F since 7:00AM. How could you have any confidence in tonights predicted temps when they obviously didn't see this coming with a forecast high of 43F today? I have no idea how we will even get to 40F.

I was pretty much toast before today/tonight, but I feel bad for those who had been spared to this point, then have this crap happen!

Scott, you are 100% RIGHT!!! How the h*ll could they POSSIBLY be accurate - our temp a little while ago was 36 (in St. Pete!!!!) and 37 at the St. Pete/Clw airport - and they're telling us our low will be 30 both Sat & Sun night??? What the h*ll are they smokin cuz it sure ain't tobacco.....

This is going to be death for my garden. That's all there is to it. The bottle is protected, but was already showing cold damage from being uncovered last night and exposed to near-freezing rain. The communities to our north and east all had sleet - sleet for crying out loud!

This is so disgusting, I just want to move south! truly. disgusting.

Just saw this from Bren:

I'm not sure I can afford to replace 7 yrs of collecting these tropicals. I don't think I want to after seeing this...I kind of equate it to watching your house burn down. My yard is my living room, I actually enjoy my yard more than my house and spend more time out there. I'm just sick about this. Seeing what damage I have already, I'm pretty sure I'll have huge losses come mid week.

Oh no, what damage have you already had? We'd been fortunate... up to now......

I so know what you are talking about. We have a small home - but it's plenty big enough for us because we like to spend our free time outdoors. Yes our backyard is a disorganized mess - that's what happens when we keep changing our minds as to planning the garden. I love sitting out there around the palmies, the crotons, the selloum, the bougies, the broms. I'm always finding new combinations of plants to try out, new plants to enjoy as one enjoys new friends......

And to think that in two short nights, it could be gone. Yes, it is JUST like watching your house burning down - each plant, lovingly collected, many with memories attached.

I've been collecting for about 10 years, but your garden is so much better arranged, and with so much in it. A lot of thought went into what you did...... for me, my impulsiveness and total lack of patience shows in my yard.

It's just.... I can't give it up - it's too close to my heart.

St. Pete

Zone - a wacked-out place between 9b & 10

Elevation = 44' - not that it does any good

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What would we do if we didn't have Palm Talk as a crying board? It's a great outlet for our frustrations. We didn't have Palm Talk when we had the great freeze of 89/90, so I cried alone. To have freezes like this is not only damaging to our plants, but to our psychological well being. I still have scars in my memory of the 89/90 freezes and that was many years ago.

I was growing and hybridizing Chamaedoreas then. I was away on a trip when the freeze started and when I got home it was to late to protect them. I got home at midnight and the containers were already frozen solid. I ended up hauling away 3 pickup truck loads of dead container palms and lost almost my entire Chamaedorea collection which it had taken years to assemble. To make matters worse, the heater went out in my green house and I lost all of my tropical palms and about 50 cattleyas, some of them speciman plants which had also taken years to collect.

After a few days my garden looked like a blow toarch had been taken to it. It was sickening and it took me the following summer until all the dead fronds were disposed of. I totally lost interest in gardening for about two years, and that's about how long it took my palms to recover. I talked to my palm friends and they felt the same way. We were all devistated and demoralized. I felt like I had lost a close faimly member.

Amazingly I lost only one outside palm and that was a Caryota which I knew would not last in my climate. I remember my Livistona australis, which had a beautiful full crown and about 12' of woody trunk, was totally defoliated and I thought it was dead. It came back like gangbusters and had a full crown by the end of the first summer. It took about 2 years for the Syagrus to grow full crowns again. By the end of the thrid year you never would know that there had been a freeze, so don't dispair as it's not the end of the world, but it may seem that way.

Dick

Richard Douglas

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Looks like tonight is going to be the 'do or die' night for Florida palm lovers. Though I'm now in LA, as someone who considers myself an ex-California and a current Floridian (per my FL D/L), today is one day that I can honestly say I'm glad I lost my nursery in Loxahatchee. I 'm not sure I could deal with all the stress you guys are going through now.

Best of luck to all (and God bless if that helps...)

SoCal and SoFla; zone varies by location.

'Home is where the heart suitcase is'...

_____

"If, as they say, there truly is no rest for the wicked, how can the Devil's workshop be filled with idle hands?"

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I'm not sure I can afford to replace 7 yrs of collecting these tropicals. I don't think I want to after seeing this...I kind of equate it to watching your house burn down. My yard is my living room, I actually enjoy my yard more than my house and spend more time out there. I'm just sick about this. Seeing what damage I have already, I'm pretty sure I'll have huge losses come mid week. :bummed::sick:

Let's hope for the best

currently 36.5 in NE St. Pete @ 5:50pm

Hey Bren,

I sure can understand how you feel - especially after moving down from up north to get away from that ... That's why I'm moving to Ft. Lauderdale when I move down.. .Nothing north of Palm Beach is safe.. and Even Broward is cold right now... My friends tell me just to go to Jamaica and be done with worrying.

Bobby

Long Island, New York  Zone 7a (where most of the southern Floridians are originally from)

AVERAGE TEMPS

Summer Highs  : 85-90f/day,  68-75f / night

Winter Lows     : 38-45f/day,   25-35f / night

Extreme Low    : 10-20f/day,    0-10f / night   but VERY RARE

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Hey Bren,

I sure can understand how you feel - especially after moving down from up north to get away from that ... That's why I'm moving to Ft. Lauderdale when I move down.. .Nothing north of Palm Beach is safe.. and Even Broward is cold right now... My friends tell me just to go to Jamaica and be done with worrying.

Hi Bobby - it sure is nice to see you posting again. And if you have a spare moment it'd sure be nice to see pix of your tropical oasis up in LI.....

If you move to Ft. Lauderale, be SURE you get a place in Eastern Broward. West Broward can have temps not unlike St. Pete. I dunno what it's going to do there tonight (cuz I was too distracted to check), but in our last freeze event many years ago, W. Broward's temps were the same as ours. If you're going to make the big move, be somewhere you won't have these problems. VOE.

St. Pete

Zone - a wacked-out place between 9b & 10

Elevation = 44' - not that it does any good

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Look at the brightside, we are all gonna have the most awesome compost piles this spring. Makes for the most tasty Tomatoes, yummy.

In my post I sometimes express "my" opinion. Warning, it may differ from "your" opinion. If so, please do not feel insulted, just state your own if you wish. Any data in this post is provided 'as is' and in no event shall I be liable for any damages, including, without limitation, damages resulting from accuracy or lack thereof, insult, or any other damages

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I'm not sure I can afford to replace 7 yrs of collecting these tropicals. I don't think I want to after seeing this...I kind of equate it to watching your house burn down. My yard is my living room, I actually enjoy my yard more than my house and spend more time out there. I'm just sick about this. Seeing what damage I have already, I'm pretty sure I'll have huge losses come mid week. :bummed::sick:

Let's hope for the best

currently 36.5 in NE St. Pete @ 5:50pm

Hey Bren,

I sure can understand how you feel - especially after moving down from up north to get away from that ... That's why I'm moving to Ft. Lauderdale when I move down.. .Nothing north of Palm Beach is safe.. and Even Broward is cold right now... My friends tell me just to go to Jamaica and be done with worrying.

Bobby,

If being tropical and still being in the USA is a goal the only place is Hawaii. I did live through a few cold spells in South Florida. And, it got pretty cold. I even broke out my long underwear from Montana to use at home. I was thinking about that today while I was sweating a bit. Sweating is a big part of living where I do all year round. It is not too big a sacrifice as far as I am concerned.

dk

Don Kittelson

 

LIFE ON THE RIO NEGRO

03° 06' 07'' South 60° 01' 30'' West

Altitude 92 Meters / 308 feet above sea level

1,500 kms / 932 miles to the mouth of the Amazon River

 

Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil - A Cidade da Floresta

Where the world´s largest Tropical Rainforest embraces the Greatest Rivers in the World. .

82331.gif

 

Click here to visit Amazonas

amazonas2.jpg

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Misery loves company :mellow: I know you guys know what I'm feeling. Thanks for the kind words and encouragement.

Bren in South St. Pete Florida

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Is there any merit to lighting small fires thru the garden? I'd be trying that. I'd stay up all night toasting marsh mallows and keeping them stoked with firewood and anything else combustible.

Best regards

Tyrone

Millbrook, "Kinjarling" Noongar word meaning "Place of Rain", Rainbow Coast, Western Australia 35S. Warm temperate. Csb Koeppen Climate classification. Cool nights all year round.

 

 

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Bobby--great to hear from the far north. It was fun during the Hurricane Bill swell to check on the beach/surfing situation up there. Newsday ran some nice photos of surfing at Montauk, less nice ones of nasty shorebreak at Smith Point.

We'll see how things look on Monday. SunnyFl is rather correct about the problems of living inland. A really big freeze like the ones just behind and ahead of us tends to hit nearly everything indiscriminately, but the immediate coast has enough protection that you can grow things that wouldn't make it on the mainland. You can see it in Elbert Little's classic atlas of the distributions of Florida trees. One good tropical example, gumbo limbo (I've hugged big ones in Panama), sneaks up the barrier islands to Cocoa Beach. Up there, unfortunately, it historically lived in coastal thickets (trees not tall enough to be real forests) and got some shelter from surrounding oaks and such. Gumbo limbos out in the open froze to death in the horrific 1989 freeze.

Thanks to broad lagoons separating it from the mainland, Brevard County's barrier island offers significant cold protection from Satellite Beach south through Melbourne Beach. There are old Royals, happy native gumbo-limbos, other Caribbean native tropicals, fine growing conditions for heliconias, and reasonable house prices. Hurricane risk is quite a lot lower than for Palm Beach County southward. The county's economy is an odd mixture of military retirees, space, and technology.

Right now, the WunderMap shows NW wind with barrier island temperatures no better than the mainland. NWS is predicting 30 F tonite, 33 tomorrow nite for Vero Beach, 28 tonite, 37 tomorrow nite for Melbourne Beach, indicating that the barrier island will have no extra protection tonite but will be back to normal--warmer than the mainland--tomorrow.

Fla. climate center: 100-119 days>85 F
USDA 1990 hardiness zone 9B
Current USDA hardiness zone 10a
4 km inland from Indian River; 27º N (equivalent to Brisbane)

Central Orlando's urban heat island may be warmer than us

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I've got 34.8F at 7:30. After all this rain with an overnight low tonight of 29 forcasted I can't imagine what the garden will look like in the coming weeks. This whole thing makes me sick.

Vero Beach, FL

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Is there any merit to lighting small fires thru the garden? I'd be trying that. I'd stay up all night toasting marsh mallows and keeping them stoked with firewood and anything else combustible.

Best regards

Tyrone

Tyrone,

I believe if you started lighting fires in Florida you would get the fire department and the police pretty quickly.

dk

Don Kittelson

 

LIFE ON THE RIO NEGRO

03° 06' 07'' South 60° 01' 30'' West

Altitude 92 Meters / 308 feet above sea level

1,500 kms / 932 miles to the mouth of the Amazon River

 

Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil - A Cidade da Floresta

Where the world´s largest Tropical Rainforest embraces the Greatest Rivers in the World. .

82331.gif

 

Click here to visit Amazonas

amazonas2.jpg

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Is there any merit to lighting small fires thru the garden? I'd be trying that. I'd stay up all night toasting marsh mallows and keeping them stoked with firewood and anything else combustible.

Best regards

Tyrone

Tyrone,

I believe if you started lighting fires in Florida you would get the fire department and the police pretty quickly.

dk

Indeed so. We need permits from the Dept of Forestry to light any fires outdoors. We have severe brush fires during dry season. And the winds can easily whip them out of control, despite the rain.

Meg

Palms of Victory I shall wear

Cape Coral (It's Just Paradise)
Florida
Zone 10A on the Isabelle Canal
Elevation: 15 feet

I'd like to be under the sea in an octopus' garden in the shade.

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I would build a fire myself if I could but we are under a burn ban because of the cold has killed vegetation and will burn easily. We are forecast for 29 degrees tonight and if things are as they usually are we will be a little warmer than that close to the lake Okeechobee. I hope anyway. This front is nasty for sure. Good luck to everybody affected.

David

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7:30 pm Norwest Florida Gulf Coast 34 degrees, wind north at 10 mph, 5 Bizmarkia spears area and bases wrapped in Christmas lights and sheets. All of my queens are wrapped in sheets......expecting lower 20's tonight.

David Simms zone 9a on Highway 30a

200 steps from the Gulf in NW Florida

30 ft. elevation and sandy soil

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7:30 pm Norwest Florida Gulf Coast 34 degrees, wind north at 10 mph, 5 Bizmarkia spears area and bases wrapped in Christmas lights and sheets. All of my queens are wrapped in sheets......expecting lower 20's tonight.

Hope the wind remains through the night. Moving air beats dead calm.

A buddy in Broward said its blowing down there as well.

SoCal and SoFla; zone varies by location.

'Home is where the heart suitcase is'...

_____

"If, as they say, there truly is no rest for the wicked, how can the Devil's workshop be filled with idle hands?"

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there is a point where the wind helps mix the air,but if it becomes an advective event above 10 MPH, then even CANOPY doesn't help you like it would in a radiational event!!!

Edited by gsn

Scott

Titusville, FL

1/2 mile from the Indian River

USDA Zone COLD

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25.9 here @ 8:29PM.

Holy Crap! That's way low for Florida. It's 24 here in South Carolina!

Good luck!

I'm in a major cold sink though. Even though we're technically central florida and only about 10 miles from the coast, we're usually one of the coldest spots in florida besides tallahasse, gainesville and maybe ocala or some spots near georgia. The 'nature coast' of florida is a weird area.

Jon

Brooksville, FL 9a

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25.9 here @ 8:29PM.

Holy Crap! That's way low for Florida. It's 24 here in South Carolina!

Good luck!

I'm in a major cold sink though. Even though we're technically central florida and only about 10 miles from the coast, we're usually one of the coldest spots in florida besides tallahasse, gainesville and maybe ocala or some spots near georgia. The 'nature coast' of florida is a weird area.

Same deal where I am right off the island from Hilton Head Island, SC. We're like the freezer part of the refrigerator for some odd reason. We're almost always surrounded by warmer less frosty conditions. Pretty aggravating, huh?

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25.9 here @ 8:29PM.

Holy Crap! That's way low for Florida. It's 24 here in South Carolina!

Good luck!

I'm in a major cold sink though. Even though we're technically central florida and only about 10 miles from the coast, we're usually one of the coldest spots in florida besides tallahasse, gainesville and maybe ocala or some spots near georgia. The 'nature coast' of florida is a weird area.

Same deal where I am right off the island from Hilton Head Island, SC. We're like the freezer part of the refrigerator for some odd reason. We're almost always surrounded by warmer less frosty conditions. Pretty aggravating, huh?

As far as the Northern Gulf Coast goes, Louisiana is not much better.

In my post I sometimes express "my" opinion. Warning, it may differ from "your" opinion. If so, please do not feel insulted, just state your own if you wish. Any data in this post is provided 'as is' and in no event shall I be liable for any damages, including, without limitation, damages resulting from accuracy or lack thereof, insult, or any other damages

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Bobby,

I think the Hakalau Forest National Wildlife Refuge on the Big Island might be able to use a few volunteers.

cobra,

Mebbe you need to get interested in camellias?

bluffton,

you're in the far north, so far as wild saw palmettos go. Botanists from the Carolinas have tended to scour your area for tender native plants at the north ends of their distributions.

Fla. climate center: 100-119 days>85 F
USDA 1990 hardiness zone 9B
Current USDA hardiness zone 10a
4 km inland from Indian River; 27º N (equivalent to Brisbane)

Central Orlando's urban heat island may be warmer than us

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The only thing I can add here is that it sounds like a mix of our normal winter AND our Jan 2007 freeze event. (But worse at your end) Anyway, since most of the "Freeze data" was from So Cal at that time, a lot of the info could inform you well. We had a lot of surprises.

Best of luck to all.

Bill

Zone 10a at best after 2007 AND 2013, on SW facing hill, 1 1/2 miles from coast in Oceanside, CA. 30-98 degrees, and 45-80deg. about 95% of the time.

"The great workman of nature is time."

"Genius is nothing but a great aptitude for patience."

-George-Louis Leclerc de Buffon-

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25.9 here @ 8:29PM.

Holy Crap! That's way low for Florida. It's 24 here in South Carolina!

Good luck!

I'm in a major cold sink though. Even though we're technically central florida and only about 10 miles from the coast, we're usually one of the coldest spots in florida besides tallahasse, gainesville and maybe ocala or some spots near georgia. The 'nature coast' of florida is a weird area.

Same deal where I am right off the island from Hilton Head Island, SC. We're like the freezer part of the refrigerator for some odd reason. We're almost always surrounded by warmer less frosty conditions. Pretty aggravating, huh?

Pretty much, but I handle it well. I just grow some ultra-tropicals in the sunroom and protect what I do put in the ground.

Bobby,

I think the Hakalau Forest National Wildlife Refuge on the Big Island might be able to use a few volunteers.

cobra,

Mebbe you need to get interested in camellias?

bluffton,

you're in the far north, so far as wild saw palmettos go. Botanists from the Carolinas have tended to scour your area for tender native plants at the north ends of their distributions.

I dunno, palms are my thing. Camellias just don't look tropical enough for me. Orchids I love, but they're not exactly known for their hardiness (at least not the popular ones).

Edited by cobra2326

Jon

Brooksville, FL 9a

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I gave up on trying to be a tough guy and decided to cover the palms last night. Hoping I could get a few extra degrees of protection I covered the shadehouse with a tarp. It coupled with a couple work lamps usually gets me about 4 degrees of difference from outside temps.

DSC05184.jpg

DSC05191.jpg

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Decided to use my noodle a bit. Usually I just aim the lights off into space and hope it helps to heat things up a bit. This year I decided to remember a bit of physics regarding thermal mass. The RO water is stored in the green and blue tank and I'm raising a few tilapia for the table in a kiddie pond. There's over 800 gallons of water in my little shadehouse. Water is awesome for storing thermal mass! So I aimed the really bright lights at the masses of water, and used the water for heat storage.

DSC05187.jpg

You can't see it in the pics, but there is a small amount of steam coming off the water as it cools into the night... ;)

DSC05186.jpg

Pretty pinangas keepin warm! B)

DSC05185.jpg

So what did I get out of this? Well it's currently 36.5F outside of the tarp... Check the thermometer! Sure does beat the 4 degrees F I usually achieve! B)

DSC05189.jpg

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I gave up on trying to be a tough guy and decided to cover the palms last night. Hoping I could get a few extra degrees of protection I covered the shadehouse with a tarp. It coupled with a couple work lamps usually gets me about 4 degrees of difference from outside temps.

DSC05184.jpg

DSC05191.jpg

Hey Bill, looks like a revival tent. Start preaching, my man.

In my post I sometimes express "my" opinion. Warning, it may differ from "your" opinion. If so, please do not feel insulted, just state your own if you wish. Any data in this post is provided 'as is' and in no event shall I be liable for any damages, including, without limitation, damages resulting from accuracy or lack thereof, insult, or any other damages

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Decided to use my noodle a bit. Usually I just aim the lights off into space and hope it helps to heat things up a bit. This year I decided to remember a bit of physics regarding thermal mass. The RO water is stored in the green and blue tank and I'm raising a few tilapia for the table in a kiddie pond. There's over 800 gallons of water in my little shadehouse. Water is awesome for storing thermal mass! So I aimed the really bright lights at the masses of water, and used the bodies of water for heat storage.

You can't see it in the pics, but there is a small amount of steam coming off the water as it cools into the night... ;)

Pretty pinangas keepin warm! B)

DSC05185.jpg

So what did I get out of this? Well it's currently 36.5F outside of the tarp... Check the thermometer! Sure does beat the 4 degrees F I usually achieve! B)

DSC05189.jpg

Good work, Bill!

Zone 10a at best after 2007 AND 2013, on SW facing hill, 1 1/2 miles from coast in Oceanside, CA. 30-98 degrees, and 45-80deg. about 95% of the time.

"The great workman of nature is time."

"Genius is nothing but a great aptitude for patience."

-George-Louis Leclerc de Buffon-

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I gave up on trying to be a tough guy and decided to cover the palms last night. Hoping I could get a few extra degrees of protection I covered the shadehouse with a tarp. It coupled with a couple work lamps usually gets me about 4 degrees of difference from outside temps.

Bill,

I'd have hoped you were doing all you could to protect your investment!

To me, people who don't do what they can to protect their plants (except, perhaps, where data is being collected to assess cold-tolerance or microclimates, or simply have too large an area/too big of trees) in the face of the probable are fools. There are always those who want to "prove" that their yard/city/area are somehow "immune" to the cold that surrounds them. Let them be the first to freeze, IMHO.

Best of luck!

____________

From NWS-- WPB expected low 28F, MIA 31F.

SoCal and SoFla; zone varies by location.

'Home is where the heart suitcase is'...

_____

"If, as they say, there truly is no rest for the wicked, how can the Devil's workshop be filled with idle hands?"

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Truth is, I was caught a bit off guard and a bit lazy about getting cold protection up for the first round of cold we had... turned out it was colder than we've ever had since I've been growing palms. :rant: That was dumb... Cost me a batch of Socratea, Mauritia, and probably my teeny Pigafettas. Nothing bigger than 1g so things could have been a great deal worse.

Things are good now. Just need to figure out a cost effective way to create some pitch in the roof of my shadehouse, rain sag is a real bummer on the tarp. I built a flat roof shadehouse like everyone else in Florida with wind and shade in mind. I wasn't planing for cold. :rolleyes: That too was dumb, but not too bad for an ambitious amateur! :D

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To Meg and others who have mentioned lighting fires ---

Many years ago I lived in a place in CA which was usually winter mild, but would occasionally drops below 20 Deg F.

What helped me a lot was a kerosene burning orchard heater, or am I too out of date for that. I had no prroblem back then finding one at an orchard supply house. It really worked wonders, made no smoke (it had a stack return burner) and was not visibly hot. But it sure radiated out a tremendous amount of warmth throughout my (smallish) garden. The only bad aspect was that it made a noisy whoosh, whoosh sound all night that was quite audible to my nearby (very close) neighbors. But no one complained; they were all shut up tight in their houses keeping themselve warm.

garrin in hawaii

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To Meg and others who have mentioned lighting fires ---

Many years ago I lived in a place in CA which was usually winter mild, but would occasionally drops below 20 Deg F.

What helped me a lot was a kerosene burning orchard heater, or am I too out of date for that. I had no prroblem back then finding one at an orchard supply house. It really worked wonders, made no smoke (it had a stack return burner) and was not visibly hot. But it sure radiated out a tremendous amount of warmth throughout my (smallish) garden. The only bad aspect was that it made a noisy whoosh, whoosh sound all night that was quite audible to my nearby (very close) neighbors. But no one complained; they were all shut up tight in their houses keeping themselve warm.

As far as I know, orange growers (IE--The Irvine Co) in OC used them (along with large fans) until the last of the groves were cut down. They may still use them for avos down in SD Co.

Large propane heaters (available at Home Depot or Lowes), common for heating outdoor eating areas of restaurants, could also help.

SoCal and SoFla; zone varies by location.

'Home is where the heart suitcase is'...

_____

"If, as they say, there truly is no rest for the wicked, how can the Devil's workshop be filled with idle hands?"

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