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Protect your plants from freezing temperatures

Keeping plants protected from the cold / Eric Mock (WGXA)

MACON, Ga. -- With colder days ahead, many people will want to protect the fruits and vegetables they are growing.

Karol Kelly with the Macon UGA Extension Office said some plants like collard greens and broccoli thrive in the cold, so growers don't have to worry about them.

However, people will want to cover up plants like basil and other herbs with a bed sheet or piece of plastic overnight to keep them going for a few more weeks.

That traps the heat from the soil and helps keep them warm.

Kelly warns not to keep the cover on too long, though.

"Things like plastic make sure to get it off your plant in the morning so it doesn't cook your plant if the temperatures warm up, but that might extend these plants lives if you want to keep them around for another few weeks," Kelly said. "If you were interested in keeping this basil for another few weeks that might help prolong it, otherwise there's a good chance it's going to get hammered in the days to come."

She said people should also use heavy mulch on the plants to protect the root system.

For things like peppers, harvest them before the cold comes in. Kelly said those types of plans won't last through the night.

Bring in any potted citrus plants because those are especially vulnerable to the cold.

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