Wow! Central and South Florida had some really cold temperatures this week. It was colder in South Florida than it was here in the Tampa Bay Area.
I don't remember the last time my garden had this much damage. I keep thinking I should remember, but I don't, so it must have been a while back.
Typically, I don't let the media hype affect me too much when it comes to threats of freezing weather. I'm always the one saying, "I'm not buying it", when hour after hour the newscasters repeat their scary predictions of imminent freeze warnings.
Only this week the weather itself convinced me.
On Tuesday night it got very cold... almost freezing temps. Wednesday it was cold and very windy almost all day long with temperatures dropping rapidly in the afternoon as the wind died down. I knew when that wind stopped it was going to be a cold one. Typically I'm all for the cold as long as it doesn't affect my garden. HA!
Losing some of the plants in my garden is really small beans (matter of fact, I did lose some beans, too) compared to what can happen to growers in Florida who are depending on their crops for a living. And when they lose, it filters out to the rest of the country which is dependent on Florida growers in the winter.
I read reports that temps in the 20s were logged as far south as Collier, Glades and Charlotte counties.
According to a USA Today article, "Several days of the coldest temperatures South Florida has seen in years are threatening to ruin orange groves, cucumber fields and tropical fish ponds across the state."
And the article goes on to say, "Florida supplies 70% of domestically grown fruits and vegetables during the winter months, and many of them are still in the field, including oranges, strawberries, blueberries and tomatoes, McElroy said."
The saddest part of a cold snap like this is how it only takes a night or two with a few hours of freezing temps to damage so much that all the other days of the year has grown freely.
Today was beautiful, mild, and sunny just like our tropical Florida winters usually are.
Oh, the life of a Floridian.