Protecting your plants from frost

FRESNO, Calif.

"Just little Christmas tree lights."

That's right. The Bakers set Christmas lights on the jade plants to add heat.

"We usually put lights on it anyway. And we just turn them on at night and leave them on all night long." said Eloise Baker.

The Belmont Nursery in Fresno County offers several options for people to help guard their plants. Owner Jon Reelhorn says customers were buying burlap sacks, frost cloths, and chemicals to protect their landscaping. He adds using plastic can also be an inexpensive alternative to fight the frost.

"If you do put it on the plants and it touches the foliage you might lose the tip of it. But at least the plants going to live. A good way to keep it off the plant is a simple little tripod. Get three pieces of bamboo, 50-cents a piece and tie them up. Put the plastic over it. Works really well." said Reelhorn.

Valley growers endured a night of below freezing temperatures Saturday night. Kevin Clark grows several varieties of fruit in Reedley. He's watching the temperatures again Sunday night. He says the extreme cold this time of year can have devastating effects on some of his crops.

"This time of year it's anything that's blooming. Any of the stone fruits, almonds, cherries. Anything like that. The oranges can take it better now. They've got more sugar. They've gone through a lot of cold weather so they're a lot more cold hearty now." said Clark.

Stone fruit and almond growers will try to keep the dew point above 28 degrees by adding warm water to the ground. This should help keep temperatures around the crop above 30-degrees.

Plant expert Jon Reelhorn tells me another easy way to cover your plants is to use an umbrella. It's not fancy but if you set it above your plants -- the umbrella will act as shield from the cold.

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