Although Arizona can become quite hot over the summer months, plenty of areas get cold enough during the winter that you should know how to adequately protect your plants from deadly frost. Fortunately, a little preparation goes a long way.
First, some plants will survive a freeze. If you have pansies, hostas, primroses, lilies of the valley, or Siberian irises, you can focus on protecting plants that are less hardy during the winter. These are also good plants to consider when it comes time to redesign your landscape.
Of course, you can bring small potted plants inside for the winter as long as you have room. For the rest of your lawn and garden, however, covering plants or wrapping trees can protect them from the encroaching frost. Just like a blanket keeps you warm, a cover keeps cold air away from your delicate flora. Many people refer to all plant coverings as cloches, but they’re also sold as plant covers or protectors.
Cover Your Plants to Protect Them From Frost
Many people go the DIY route with blankets or sheets. Although it may not be aesthetically pleasing, this is an excellent answer for large plants or bushes. Similarly, plastic sheets are a convenient way to protect plants if you don’t want to sacrifice your comforter. Tough trash bags may work in a pinch, but thinner materials easily tear, allowing the frost to get in. Burlap is more durable and affordable.
Your local lawn and garden center has options, too. You can buy plant protectors in various sizes. Some are even designed to fit snugly over potted plants! These solutions work well because they’re made from rigid plastic and won’t collapse on your plants. However, their higher prices are a drawback for some. If you’re on a budget and your plants are small, everything from a soda bottle to an empty milk jug can serve the same purpose.
Some people make frames for their DIY setups to keep the soft material from squishing plants. You can create frames out of any of the following variety of materials to cut down on costs.
- Flexible tubing
- PVC pipe
- Hula hoops
These frames can also support netting that protects your plants from pests during the warmer months too.
Other Steps to Protect Your Plants from Frost
Aside from covering your plants, you can insulate plants by adding a thick layer of mulch around the base. But don’t expect this to offer protection for much more than a heavy frost. Old-fashioned lights that emit heat can also be beneficial for your plants. Finally, make sure your plants are hydrated before a frost, especially if there’s no incoming rain.