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Nursery Owners Do What They Can To Protect Plants From Cold

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APEX — When you head to the local nursery this spring to buy plants for your yard, you can only hope that they'll be in good condition.

From spraying the plants with water to covering the plants with a tarp, nursery owners are doing everything they can to protect the plants from the chilly air.

Ronald Copeland is working to protect his 35-acre-large Apex Nursery. Recently, his staff removed the white plastic tarps that covered the plants over the winter. With this week's cold spell gripping North Carolina, the tarps are being put back on the plants.

Copeland says that the tarps protect the plants from the cold air, and they also allow the plants to dry out. He says that homeowners who want to try the tarp idea should water their plants first.

Nurseries also use irrigation to put a protective coating of ice on plants which are especially vulnerable to freezing temperatures, like trees.

Bring plants inside the house when you can. If you can't, then water the plants, and use a white tarp to cover them. The tarp has to be white -- if it's clear, then more sunlight will get through, and it could dry the plants out too much. Then, you need to take the tarp off the next day, once the temperatures are above freezing.

Repeat as necessary, and Old Man Winter may pass you by.

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Amanda Lamb, Reporter
Keith Baker, Photographer
Brian Shrader, Web Editor

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