Nerine casualties

Ernie O'Byrne
Sat, 04 Mar 2006 08:37:22 PST
The Nerine were in gallon pots in a block of about 10 by 10 (pots). When
cold weather was predicted, I dragged out our frost protection blanket,
which hadn't been used in a number of years because we have been having
"normal" temps, mostly, or even a bit on the warm side.

Anyway the blanket is 1/4" foam sandwiched between two pieces of plastic. It
is designed to breath and even to admit water. It was clear when we had the
frost, but I think a large part of the problem is that in this area, we get
heavy winter rains and the pots were saturated going into the freeze. In a
drier climate, I think that they would have been fine.

The blanket was held down around the plants with weight, so air movement
around the pots would have been minimal. In the promotion blurb about the
material, they claim about 7-8 degrees F. protection, so with temps of 16
degrees, they still would have been getting 23-24 degrees.

I don't know about the parentage of the plants and would have to check to
see where we got them (Northwest Bulbs?), but the colors offered were
salmon, white, red and a cultivar called 'Magenta Princess'. Perhaps they
were just not very hardy, especially in a pot.

Ernie O'Byrne
Northwest Garden Nursery
86813 Central Road
Eugene, ORegon 97402

-----Original Message-----
[]On Behalf Of Jim McKenney
Sent: Saturday, March 04, 2006 7:16 AM
To: 'Pacific Bulb Society'
Subject: Re: [pbs] Nerine casualties

I'm sorry to hear about your Nerine losses, Ernie. Can you explain in more
detail what you did to protect them? The reason I'm asking is that I put my
Nerine outside several weeks ago; since then, there have been several
overnight dips, one down to the 12-15 degree F range. So far, there has been
no significant damage.

The Nerine are in pots near a house wall. The proximity of the wall no doubt
ameliorates the temperature dips, and the plants are covered nightly with a
double layer of plastic tarp. They are not only covered, the edges are
sealed so that there is little if any air movement. So far, this has worked.
I doubt that this system of protection will work in a normal winter, when we
sometimes go for days or even weeks at a time when the daytime temperature
does not go above freezing. But this has been an exceptionally mild winter.

I'm amazed and very happy that this has worked here, but obviously I'm
skating on thin ice. Understanding in greater detail what you did may help
all of us come to a better way of protecting these plants.

Jim McKenney
Montgomery County, Maryland, USA, USDA zone 7, where nights are still cold
enough to freeze bowls of water solid.
pbs mailing list

More information about the pbs mailing list