Attention Houston: This is your once-a-decade reminder that you don't quite live in the deep tropics.
— Eric Berger (@SpaceCityWX) January 7, 2017
Oh man. We left town Friday evening prepared for the weekend deep freeze with what we thought was going to be mid to high 20s and instead woke up Saturday morning in Dallas with Chris checking the temperature for our town to find out the low was 20*. There’s a good chance it was a little lower than that, too, but either way, the damage was done. Saturday night was more of the same, a double whammy. Chris has prepared by putting up all of the orchids, bromeliads, and other tropicals, and covered the sensitive cactus but we left everything else—including the vegetable garden—up to its own devices because our previous experiences with the mid 20s and high 20s had left everything else in decent, if not a little nipped back, shape.
Needless to say, that 5-8* difference was enough to ruin several things in the vegetable garden and severely nip back several plants in the flower bed. It remains to be seen what will and won’t recover. My hopes of the African blue basil, which had several branches surviving the freeze in December, pulling through until spring are completely toast. Other plants, we won’t know for a few weeks or until spring. The citrus appear to be affected somewhat but they should pull through just fine. I’m most heartbroken about all of the tropical milkweed plants that had germinated from seed in the garden as well as had already started resprouting from being cut back. I was hoping for a thicket for the monarchs this year. I only took six cuttings, well, six are what rooted, so I am hoping the pull through and the rest of the sprouts can recover enough for the caterpillars this summer.
I have a lot of work to do in the next few weeks. This weekend I need to start tomato seeds and a few other things including resowing some greens in the vegetable beds. I want to get the flower beds completely weeded in mulched before the end of January so they are ready to go into spring and there are seeds to sow in there, too.
Lots of garden chores among many other things I need and want to do!