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Thread: Any suggestions?

  1. #1

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    I've had my plants in my garage for about 3 weeks now and they're sleeping soundly. The Western NY area just got slammed in the last 2 weeks with cold weather and tons of snow. Unfortunately temps got the lowest the last 2 days, around 15F and my guys in the garage froze in their pots. Should I move them to my basement which is at about 60-63F? What other means could I take to keep them from dying? Thanks.


    PS - Sorry I've been a stranger here lately. With dormancy kicking in I got wrapped up in other hobbies to pass the time until Spring... [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile_m_32.gif[/img]

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    indymental's Avatar
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    What plants are you referring to? Sarras and vfts will be fine, they can stand being frozen and will survive 15F with no problem.

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    Nepenthes Specialist nepenthes gracilis's Avatar
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    The deal with dormant CP's is they can take a hard freeze like that as long as it doesn't last for weeks. I live in Alexandria Bay, NY just North of Watertown, I'm sure you know where I am, and we get quite cold due to the fact we are just 1.5 miles away from the Canadian border! Anywho, I had and still have an S. leucophylla and let it freeze to -20F for a week then thawed it out to around 33-35F which is opt. temperature at which I aim to keep dormant plants happy, and it came back just fine, didn't hurt it a bit. Now, it also depends on the health of the plant. This was a very healthy specimen and probably was ok with the freeze, if it had been sick when it went dormany it probably would have died.

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    I'm have close to 2 dozen vfts, Sarracenia, and Darlintonia all of which were very healthy going into dormancy. Thanks for the tips (wow NG... -20F? Now that's cold), however I'm still concerned about the freezing temps as it's not even December. I fear we'll have more than just a few weeks of freezes here (more like 3 months). About how long could these guys remain frozen? I have them well shielded from any harsh winds. If temps drop for a long perod of time would it be OK to bring them inside temporarily?

  5. #5
    Nepenthes Specialist nepenthes gracilis's Avatar
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    No doubt you'll be subjected to much more freezing weather. This is only the beginning my friend for you and I! I would bring them in to thaw out, aim for just above freezing. Also, it helps if you can put styrafoam sheets around them, like the pieces that come in large TV set boxes, they help insulate.

    PS- -20F was a "heat wave" last winter, the lows were one week for every night, at least -35F up here, supposedly the DOT where my father works was recording a temp of -45F where the complex is located!




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    herenorthere's Avatar
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    My Sarrs freeze solid for the winter and do fine. There has to be a low temperature they can't go below but, as long as they stay above that, I think they're damaged more by repeated freezing & thawing than by one continuous freeze. So I bury the pots in a raised bed, cover them with a pile of leaves, and put a lean-to overhead to keep snow off the leaves. They freeze once, thaw once, don't sit in standing water, and get the light that filters down through the leaves.

    I've never tested this hypothesis, but I think plants in peat mixes won't survive the long freeze as well as plants like mine, which are in a mix of LFS & sponge rock. My first Sarr, which I had in a standard recipe peat mix, lost a lot of roots its first winter. That never happened again after I began using the LFS blend. A frozen peat mix is a pretty impervious place and even dormant roots want oxygen.
    Bruce in CT

    Madness is something rare in individuals but in groups, parties, peoples, ages it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

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    Tropical Fish Enthusiast jimscott's Avatar
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    I had some VFT's freeze in the screened in porch, so I moved then to the butter keeper of the fridge. They survived just fine and flowered for me in the spring. But this was in Reading, PA. Can you put them in the attic? Do you know how cold the attic will be in the dead od winter? When I actually move to East Aurora (within the next 2 weeks), I will put the dormancy plants in the attic. Can you gather pine needles to help insulate?

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    If they freeze, don't thaw them out or bring them inside. VFTs in particular can die if taken from freezing into 70s heat.
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