Friday, January 14, 2011


I always imagined gardening would look about the same all over the world. Plants, tools, digging, watering and such are on the menu for everyone. But, for zone 9ers a big part of the show is covering plants. I would guess people in tropical climates would view the photo below with amused curiosity. Likewise in Canada.
I also figured out something else. Next time we have a close brush with freezing weather, I'm going to make note of the gardens in my neighborhood with the most things covered.  Why? Because it shows that you don't want your tender plants to die. Plus, I'd be curious as to what exactly  they were covering! LOL

I covered about 12 plants this time around. These are tropical plants that are in the ground and are not as hardy as the rest. I can already tell that it was worth the effort.  I have about 100 plants that don't need covering...they've either gone into hibernation or can take colder weather. About 40 of my favorites are indoors or in my greenhouse.  I fear January freezes, but to be honest, February is the month that fills me with the most dread. It's been as low as 18 here in February and that would probably be the end of most of my tropical garden.
But, on the bright side, the weather is rebounding by 10 degrees each day. We'll be back up to 70 by Monday. I can't wait.
A curious sight


  1. Yes I have to admit it is just such a bizarre sight seeing gardeners wrapping up tropical plants to get them through a Winter.

    I suppose a similar situation here would be gardeners putting umbrellas, ice bags and fans around cold-climate plants here in the tropics to get them through a Summer ... or even putting them in their own air-conditioned house.

    But it seems to work for you ... your tropicals seem to come through OK.

  2. Ever since that ice storm in February of 93 or 94, I dread February. Each year that February passes without incident, my dread grows stronger. Sooner or later we're going to get hit! I'd rather live with the dread than the event, though, so here's hoping 2/11 increases the dread!

  3. I enjoyed this cute post. I hope your blankets do the job, but that you don't have to use them often.

  4. I have the same problem; I could cover the entire garden but concentrate on my favorite plants.

  5. Umbrellas, ice, and AC houses? Oh my!
    Up to now....The strangest case I've heard of was a British gardener who ran drip hoses on her tree fern collection because of low humidity in the summertime. Each tree fern was given its own drip hose!
    Cindy...yes, I'm hoping the February Freeze Monster stays away yet again for another season.
    David/ Tropical Texana

  6. From a fellow Zone 9 gardener, I totally get it, as I'm sure you can notice from my blog. My father before me... my grandfather before him... throwing blankets over plants were part of my childhood and seem perfectly normal to me. January is our worst month here in CenFL though, for sheer number of freezes, and it is the month that I dread the most. I'll be so glad when March comes, and we can breathe a final sigh of relief. I think a lot of people don't get why we do this, but we really are more limited in our growing zone than Zones 8 or 10.

  7. I would have to add zone 8ers to your zone 9ers claim...or maybe I should say zone 8ers who want to be zone 9ers! I've got a collection of frost cloth, burlap, sheets and such at the ready at all time. I've done 4 rounds thus far...wondering how much more is yet to come.

  8. Yes...February is a sneaky month. You think...just maybe I could start planting and then you discover after your newly purchased plant froze on an unexpected frost killing evening ....sometimes even March is dangerous:) I hope your plants make it through the next couple of nights.


I always appreciate your comments & questions! Happy Gardening from David/ Tropical Texana

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