When a freeze warning goes into effect for Central Arizona, temperature lows are expected to hit below 32. To prepare your landscape for the icy nights, be sure to take a few key precautions to avoid dying plants. Below are some recommendations.
Some species of plants are more susceptible to frost damage than others. Bougainvillea, citrus trees, hibiscus, ficus and non-native cactus are some of the most sensitive. Be sure to understand which plants are frost-sensitive.
It’s fairly common knowledge that covering plants is the best way to protect them during a freeze. But many may not realize that choosing the right fabric is very important! DO NOT USE PLASTIC! When plastic is in direct contact with your plant leaves, it causes more harm than not using anything at all. Recommended fabrics are landscape tarps,bed sheets, light blankets or burlap are a much safer options than plastic covers. Choose something with pores to allow moisture to escape.
When night time temperatures reach below freezing, be sure to leave the cover on all night long and through the morning. If possible, don’t remove the tarps until late morning as some of the coldest temperatures of the day occur right after sunrise.