NC and Regional FREEZE ADVISORY (Jan. 3, 2014)

ALERT:  NC Growers in Areas with Minimums going into low teens and single digits by early next week should apply row covers this Friday afternoon to their strawberry plasticulture crop, or no later than this weekend. Temperatures are expected to be cold tonight (Fri/Sat), and then extremely cold Monday night and Tuesday night. NC AWIS WEEKLY Jan 3-10

Dear Growers, Agents, Agronomists and Others,

Introduction and Grower Discussion:

Strong winds are continuing this morning in much of the state, which is making row cover application difficult!  But, winds should be subsiding this afternoon.  I have been in touch with a great number of growers over the last few days, and “we are all shocked with how much colder it is going to get this Monday night (Jan 6)/Tuesday morning (Jan 7), as well as on Jan 7/8.  It will be significantly colder than was anticipated on New Year’s Day!

For example, I just checked on a grower site in our western piedmont of NC (Yadkinville), and it will be 16 F tonight (Friday, Jan 3), but then on Monday night/Tue morning the bottom is dropping out, and the grower I spoke with in this area will be seeing a minimum  8 F.  Then on Tuesday night/Wed morning it will be only 9 F (according to AccuWeather Pro).  I noted that AWIS is calling for 6 F and 9 F for this same location.

In Raleigh, we may get to 13 F on Mon/Tue, so I think we have a good chance of break the record of 15 F for Jan 7, of 15 F set in 1988.   I am beginning to wonder, like Eric Hunter (below), if this is now shaping up to be one of those kinds of years when we just keep putting new records in the book?  I hope not!!

1. (South Carolina grower): I received this note yesterday from Eric Hunter, Easley, SC:

“Hey Dr. Poling,
Our forecast for low temperatures has changed several times since this morning.  The airport temperature forecast has us reaching 11 degrees on Monday night/Tuesday morning (it has changed between 11 degrees and 19 degrees on several occasions).  Both Accuweather and NOAA are in agreement and both have fluctuated.

Given that information, we can expect a possibility of getting down to 3-5 degrees or 10-12 degrees (depending on what the actual forecast turns out to be).  Pretty scary in either scenario.

We have rain today and expect tomorrow to be windy.  We’re looking at putting covers on Saturday and Sunday.  We have had some covers damaged that we haven’t replaced, so we’re currently scrambling for some covers (it appears that ‘agrofabric’ may be able to supply what I need by Monday.  I think we’re going to go with a 1.25oz.

Our plants have already been subjected to temps this year of 15-18 degrees (around Thanksgiving) and have had many nights in the low 20′s.  I feel confident that they have acclimated and hardened off very well for this, but I don’t think any amount of hardening off is conducive to low single digits.

Going to be an interesting start to the year…
Thanks,
Eric

<Editor’s note:  I advised Eric to consider a 1.5 oz cover for added protection over the 1.25 oz, as he does not normally use row covers for overwintering – just frost and freeze protection.  If that describes your situation, you may wish to invest in a cover that provides more cold protection>

2. (Ohio) Steve Polter from Ohio wrote yesterday: “We are talking about lows approaching – 20 F here next week. We will see what CA varieties can take!  Happy New Year!”

3. (NC) Brian Johnson, Angier sent a text message to me yesterday (my cell is 919.418.9687) and was interested in knowing if he should apply covers today, and inquired about using sprinkling?  I TOTALLY RECOMMENDED AGAINST ANY USAGE OF WATER – that would be an absolute disaster under these arctic freeze conditions.  I evaluated his lows for tonight and early next week, and they were sort of borderline yesterday (upper teens), but now the AccuWeather Pro is saying 15 F in his location for Monday night, so I said it would be well to cover up today.

B. NC FREEZE SITUATION – please review this forecast for tonight issued by AWIS

AWIS Weather Services, Inc.
North Carolina Frost/Freeze Forecast
Produced at  505 AM CST on Fri Jan  3 2014

... Forecast for Tonight ...

Northeast NC Coast                      
Currituck/Camden/Pasquotank/Tyrrell Counties      

**** HARD FREEZE ****
**** LITTLE IF ANY FROST **** 

Lowest Temperatures:      18 - 27
Elizabeth_City Min          18 
Durations at/below 32:    15 - 22
Durations at/below 28:     5 - 18
Range Dewpoint Temps:      7 - 24
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     17 - 31
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:   N  7                          
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   35 - 43   45 - 52   14 - 24   14 - 22   22 - 31   36 - 44
--------

East Central/SE NC Coast                
Carteret/Pamlico Counties                         

**** HARD FREEZE ****
****    PATCHY FROST  ****

Lowest Temperatures:      18 - 22
Morehead_City Min           22 
Durations at/below 32:    16 - 18
Durations at/below 28:    13 - 16
Range Dewpoint Temps:     10 - 17
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     17 - 25
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:   N  7                          
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   37 - 40   48 - 51   19 - 21   13 - 18   26 - 29   36 - 41
--------

Southeast NC                            
NWS FORECAST ZONES 87-90,96-101                   

**** HARD FREEZE ****
**** LITTLE IF ANY FROST **** 

Lowest Temperatures:      15 - 21
Elizabethtown Min           19 
Durations at/below 32:    16 - 19
Durations at/below 28:    14 - 17
Range Dewpoint Temps:      1 - 15
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     17 - 26
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  NE  5     Long Periods of Calm 
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   31 - 40   40 - 49   13 - 19   10 - 18   21 - 27   34 - 42
--------

North-Central NC                        
Franklin County Area                              

**** HARD FREEZE ****
**** LITTLE/NO FROST DUE TO DRY AIR **** 

Lowest Temperatures:      14 - 21
Louisburg Min               14 
Durations at/below 32:    17 - 20
Durations at/below 28:    15 - 17
Range Dewpoint Temps:     -2 -  8
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     14 - 21
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:   V  2     Long Periods of Calm 
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   26 - 34   29 - 43    7 - 16    8 - 14   18 - 25   28 - 36
--------

North/Central NC                        
Alamance County Area                              

**** HARD FREEZE ****
**** LITTLE/NO FROST DUE TO DRY AIR **** 

Lowest Temperatures:      16 - 21
Graham_AG Min               18 
Durations at/below 32:    18 - 23
Durations at/below 28:    16 - 18
Range Dewpoint Temps:     -6 -  7
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     15 - 21
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  SE  3     Long Periods of Calm 
AVG Sky Condition:     Partly Cloudy

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   28 - 33   30 - 35    9 - 14    9 - 14   20 - 25   29 - 35
--------

South/Central NC                        
Richmond County Area                              

**** HARD FREEZE ****
**** LITTLE/NO FROST DUE TO DRY AIR **** 

Lowest Temperatures:      16 - 20
Ellerbe Min                 18 
Durations at/below 32:    18 - 19
Durations at/below 28:    16 - 16
Range Dewpoint Temps:      0 - 12
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     16 - 24
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  NE  5     Long Periods of Calm 
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   30 - 34   30 - 43   10 - 16   11 - 13   22 - 24   32 - 37
--------

For more detailed information visit www.awis.com or call 888-798-9955.
Copyright 2014 AWIS Weather Services, Inc. All rights reserved.

C. NC MINIMUM TEMPS OVER NEXT WEEK -NC AWIS WEEKLY Jan 3-10

D. AWIS MINIMUM TEMP MAP FOR NC ON TUESDAY (JAN 7)

7daytemp.nc.8

E. AWIS MINIMUM TEMP MAP FOR NC ON WED (JAN 8)

Wed min.nc.10

F.  Virginia freeze update

This is just a sampling of what our grower friends in the “Old Dominion State” are in for next week:

va lows

Here is the AWIS max/min table for the whole state of VA: Old Dominion AWIS Weekly Jan 3-Jan 10

  • We have not seen temperatures this cold in many many years!  (I sure hope that no one Central Va planted any muscadines this past late fall/early winter – could be looking at a replant situation – these vines can generally handle about 10 F, and that’s it)

Virginia minimum temp map for Jan 7:

VA Jan 7daytemp.at.8

Virginia minimum temp for Jan 8:

VA Jan 8temp.at.10

G. South Carolina freeze update on Jan 3rd (noon):

AWIS does not provide a freeze report, as such, for SC (similar to Sect B for NC), but this weekly max/min table provides just the information you need to make an informed decsion about whether you may need to be applying some row covers this weekend, like Eric Hunter will be doing with his family in Easley.  Growers who have row covers available, and will be experiencing temperatures in the low teens or single digits, should consider applying covers. And, even if the temperature is only expected to be in the mid-to-upper teens, they can provide some “good insurance” in case it gets any colder than what is currently in forecast for SC growers.  It is hard to believe that Clemson will hit 10F on Tue.

SC AWIS Max/Min Table: SC AWIS Weekly Jan 3-10

H. Tennessee freeze update

Boy!  Growers in Savannah, GA, should be very thankful they will not be getting as cold as Savannah, TN, next week (6 F on Jan 7):  TN AWIS WEEKLY Jan 3 – 10

I.  Georgia freeze update: GA AWIS Jan 3 to 10

Savannah strawberry growers will see a minimum of 21 F on Tue (Jan 7) and Wed (Jan 8), so that’s not too worrisome.  But, check out the rest of the state!

GA Jan 7 minGA Min Jan 8

I.  Arkansas freeze update:  AR AWIS Weekly Jan 3 to 10

AWIS Weather Services, Inc.
Arkansas Frost/Freeze Forecast
Produced at  505 AM CST on Fri Jan  3 2014

... Forecast for Tonight ...

Northwest Arkansas                      
NWS Fcst Zones 1-3, 10-12, 19-21                  

**** HARD FREEZE ****
**** LITTLE IF ANY FROST DUE TO WIND **** 

Lowest Temperatures:      25 - 30
Fayetteville_AG Min         27 
Durations at/below 32:    12 - 20
Durations at/below 28:     0 - 11
Range Dewpoint Temps:     10 - 32
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     23 - 32
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  SE 15                          
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   12 - 25   -1 -  9    4 - 10   21 - 25   25 - 32   23 - 30
--------

North Central Arkansas                  
NWS Fcst Zones 4-7, 13-16, 22-24                  

**** HARD FREEZE ****
**** LITTLE IF ANY FROST DUE TO WIND **** 

Lowest Temperatures:      18 - 28
Mountain_Home_Ag Min        23 
Durations at/below 32:    13 - 21
Durations at/below 28:     2 - 19
Range Dewpoint Temps:     10 - 27
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     22 - 27
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  SE 13                          
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   17 - 30    0 -  9    3 - 10   15 - 24   25 - 30   24 - 31
--------

Northeast Arkansas                      
NWS Fcst Zones 8-9, 17-18, 25-28                  

**** HARD FREEZE ****
**** LITTLE IF ANY FROST DUE TO WIND **** 

Lowest Temperatures:      20 - 23
Alicia Min                  21 
Durations at/below 32:    21 - 21
Durations at/below 28:    16 - 21
Range Dewpoint Temps:     13 - 27
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     20 - 27
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:   S 10                          
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   30 - 34    6 - 10    6 - 10   16 - 20   27 - 32   27 - 31
--------

West Central Arkansas                   
NWS Fcst Zones 29-30, 37-38, 40-41                

**** HARD FREEZE ****
**** LITTLE IF ANY FROST DUE TO WIND **** 

Lowest Temperatures:      22 - 31
Fort_Smith_AR_AP Min        29 
Durations at/below 32:     5 - 16
Durations at/below 28:     0 - 13
Range Dewpoint Temps:     12 - 24
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     25 - 29
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:   E  8                          
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   25 - 29    8 - 12    7 - 13   19 - 27   31 - 35   29 - 33
--------

Central Arkansas                        
NWS Fcst Zones 31-33, 39, 42-46, 54-56            

**** HARD FREEZE ****
** PATCHY FROST COLDEST PROTECTED AREAS **

Lowest Temperatures:      21 - 28
Searcy Min                  23 
Durations at/below 32:    14 - 19
Durations at/below 28:     2 - 15
Range Dewpoint Temps:     10 - 19
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     19 - 28
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  SE  6                          
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   29 - 37   10 - 15    8 - 14   20 - 25   28 - 37   27 - 34
--------

East Central Arkansas                   
NWS Fcst Zones 34-36, 47-49, 57-58                

**** HARD FREEZE ****
**** LITTLE IF ANY FROST DUE TO WIND **** 

Lowest Temperatures:      21 - 26
Marianna Min                21 
Durations at/below 32:    16 - 21
Durations at/below 28:    10 - 16
Range Dewpoint Temps:      8 - 27
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     22 - 27
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:   S  9                          
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   33 - 37   10 - 14    9 - 13   19 - 23   29 - 33   30 - 34
--------

Southwest Arkansas                      
NWS Fcst Zones 50-52, 59-60, 70-71                

**** HARD FREEZE ****
** PATCHY FROST COLDEST PROTECTED AREAS **

Lowest Temperatures:      24 - 30
Hope Min                    26 
Durations at/below 32:     6 - 14
Durations at/below 28:     0 -  9
Range Dewpoint Temps:     12 - 22
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     25 - 32
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:   S  8                          
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   27 - 34   10 - 16    9 - 15   21 - 27   34 - 42   31 - 38
--------

South Central Arkansas                  
NWS Fcst Zones 53, 61-62, 66-67, 72-73            

**** HARD FREEZE ****
** PATCHY FROST PROTECTED AREAS **

Lowest Temperatures:      24 - 27
Camden Min                  24 
Durations at/below 32:    11 - 15
Durations at/below 28:     3 - 10
Range Dewpoint Temps:     12 - 19
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     24 - 32
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  SE  6     Long Periods of Calm 
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   33 - 38   13 - 16   11 - 14   23 - 26   37 - 41   34 - 38
--------

Southeast Arkansas                      
NWS Fcst Zones 63-65, 68-69, 74-75                

**** HARD FREEZE ****
** PATCHY FROST PROTECTED AREAS **

Lowest Temperatures:      24 - 26
Monticello_AR_AP Min        25 
Durations at/below 32:    13 - 15
Durations at/below 28:     7 - 12
Range Dewpoint Temps:     13 - 19
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     21 - 32
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  SE  6     Long Periods of Calm 
AVG Sky Condition:         Clear    

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

  01/05/14  01/06/14  01/07/14  01/08/14  01/09/14  01/10/14
  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------  --------
   33 - 44   13 - 17   11 - 15   21 - 24   33 - 39   34 - 37
--------

For more detailed information visit www.awis.com or call 888-798-9955.
Copyright 2014 AWIS Weather Services, Inc. All rights reserved.

J. Kentucky freeze update: KY – AWIS WEEKLY Jan 3 to 10

K. Maryland freeze update: MD AWIS WEEKLY Jan 3 to 10

L. Ohio freeze update: Ohio AWIS Weekly Jan 3 to 10

Unbelievable!  It could be that these northern OH temps will put CA varieties to the test!

ohio

M.  Are you interested in receiving SkyBit?  Just contact me at strawberrydoc@gmail.com if you are interested.  My wife and I are assisting growers in getting this set up, and running for the late winter/early spring bloom season of 2014.  There is really a fair amount  of work involved in getting this set up for the first time, so I would have to hear from you by NO LATER than next Friday morning (Jan 10).

This is an example SkyBit that I received this morning from Skybit for the Clayton Central Crops Research Station (below).  These are sent out twice daily.

20140103st1.NCCLY

This is a companion product that is sent to you each morning from Skybit

companion skybit

N.  Deer control pointers from a SC grower, Clyde Gurosik (this was originally sent to Dr. Powell Smith, Clemson.  Clyde was happy for me to share this with our readership!

Dr. Smith,

Seems that from about this time of year thru February usually requires more rigorous efforts to preclude browsing type crop damage.  We employ a technique similar to what another farmer shared during this years expo tour, as we also actually BAIT our electric fences.  Some important considerations we’ve learned over time along with pictures of everything needed are as follows:

Heavy duty aluminum foil
Peanut butter & spoon
Small nylon tie wraps
cutter pliers and regular needle nose pliers & scissors

Normally the heavy duty aluminum foil comes in an 18″ width, which is perfect to cut into 3 total, 6″ long strips, 1″ wide.  We cut a section about 3.5″ wide, so we can fold it over 3 times to increase strength before cutting it to the 6″X 1″ strips. You don’t want strips any wider or longer, as you don’t want them to blow in the wind and tear, or be so long that they can short to an adjacent ground wire. We’ve found that single small nylon tie wraps can be locked down on the wires and then cut short very easily to permanently lock and keep the foil from moving down the smooth wire to a post and shorting out during wind storms.  We use 7 strand fences with 3 hot wires, and always place the baited Al strips on the lowest Hot wire. We usually wrap the Al foil over the cut tie wrap, punching it, then wrap it several more times tightly, as indicated in the photo.. This assures that many smaller deer, purposely not harvested, can easily reach the baited foil with their wet nose or tongue.  The hoof marks usually confirm a good lesson for young deer that would otherwise just go under the fence for a nightly feast. By this time of year, most of the fall acorns are deteriorating or souring and cold weather will soon burn down other normal preferred browse making strawberry plants even more desirable.  We try to place the baited strips at all observed entry points and refresh them about every 10 days. Hope this info and pictures are helpful. Happy New Year.  What a blessing it is to FINALLY have great plants this year.
Sincerely,
Clyde
clyde 1 comp

peanut butter compr

Boy, this is making me hungry for some lunch!

Have a good afternoon and weekend!

Barclay

p.s. I spoke to Ashley Porter in nearby Willow Spring yesterdat about the deer situation, and he has never seen as much deer pressure as this past Dec/early Jan!

Dr. E. Barclay Poling
Professor Emeritus
Department of Horticultural Science

Campus Box 7609, 162A Kilgore Hall

NC State University
Raleigh, NC 27695-7609

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