Freeze Extent – Apr 5

Day 1 of our 2-day freeze event is more or less in the books. The preliminary morning low temperatures (via Mesowest) are in and included via the link below. Most folks in the central and eastern piedmont were ~ 27°F, +/- 2°. Farther north and west it was colder.

Preliminary morning low temperatures for April 5, 2016, from MesoWest.

For tonight (Tuesday night into Wednesday morning), models show a replay of these values across central and nrn MD/srn PA, but not as cold south of Baltimore… especially along and east of I-95. So if you live in the Piedmont, one more night of this fun.

As far as damage, anything that is really susceptible to a freeze (summer ornamentals, tropicals, tomato plants, etc) will be wiped out by temperatures that low. Otherwise, I think most of the major hitters are OK.

As far as the more advanced indigenous growth (fruit trees, grapes, strawberry plants), it all depends on how far along the plant is. Most blooming apple trees are good down to ~ 28°F, while peaches are good down to ~ 27°F. I don’t think our peach and apple trees were quite that far along… and consequently they were more freeze tolerant. In order to really impact tree fruit prior to flowering, you’re talking low to maybe middle 20s… and thankfully we didn’t see that. Strawberries and blueberries are fine… not far enough along to be impacted. Grapes should be able to tolerate readings down to ~ 25°F before seeing some impact, assuming they haven’t started to leaf out. For all these, you’d need to maintain the critical temperature for 30 minutes before seeing damage.

Will keep an eye on the weekend and keep you posted.

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