Sunday, December 8, 2013

Baby It's Cold Outside 2013

We are in day 5 of freezing temperatures at night.  Tonight we are suppose to get record low temps for this time of year.  It should be about 27F.  So I suppose you folks on the East coast are going to laugh at me but, I'M FREEZING MY BUNS OFF AND MY SUCCULENTS ARE TOO!
And you all know how much I care for my babies.  And this year I acquired some new ones so I hope they do OK.  But the forecast calls for another 5 or more days of this weather.  I don't know if they will make it and I believe that I will have many succulent casualties.  I thought the winter of 2012 was bad.  It may look like easy street compared to this one if we continue with this cold into 2014.

But I wanted to show you the steps I have taken to protect my plants and maybe it will help you or give you some ideas for protection.


First thing we needed to accomplish was to turn our gazebo into a greenhouse.  We had to move all of the succulents out from under the gazebo and try to get them out of the way so my husband could wrap it in 4 mil. plastic.


Pots, stands and succulents were put all around the gazebo but it sure was hard to walk around.


I decided to add more shelves inside the gazebo than in previous years.  In that way I could stuff in more succulents.  So these shelving units had to be cleaned off.


This is a view of the sidewalk leading to the front of the house.  Such a mess.  You can see Scout if trying to stay out of the way!


Stan was finally able to duck tape the 4 mil plastic all around the gazebo.  It is quite an undertaking and he is such a great husband to help with this.

You can tell how thrilled he is to be doing this job again.  LOL  I love this photo!


So here is the finished product but we still need to add the plants.  And it's starting to get dark.  Such a lot of work to do!  But the end result is worth it.


We cleared this bakers rack and put it inside also.  As long as you weigh the shelves down with lots of heavy pots the wind is not a problem.


Plants were everywhere but as they were added inside it gave me a chance to inspect them for bugs and give some a nice trim.


Can you believe this mess.  And believe it or not most of these made it in or were put in the garage.


Here is a photo just as we were beginning to put in the plants.  I filled up these two shelves and the bakers rack is to the left.  The plastic is 10 feet long so we curl it under and weigh it down with whatever we can find.  So you can see the brick and lava rocks on the right.


Here is the left near the entrance with the bakers rack full.  You can see the temperature gauge in the pot to check the temps in the greenhouse.


I wanted room to walk around but it just isn't possible.  You know I am a plant hoarder!


The gazebo is wired for electricity as you can tell by the lights so we added a small heater and it keeps the inside above freezing.


This is the other gazebo after the Sweetstuff tornado finished the greenhouse.  Lots of straightening up to do.


We keep jamming potted plants in and moving things around.  But for now we have to quit.  This was all completed a couple of weeks ago, thank goodness.  Just in time for the cold weather.  In my next post I will show you the garage, extra room upstairs and planter cover ups.

Until then remember:

It's Another Beautiful Day!

10 comments: said...

Candice, I've very impressed by your greenhouse. I hope your babies will be OK. Looking forward to the update! Stay warm! Kurt

Julie said...

oh my gosh! what a job!!! well worth it as you have such gorgeous plants!!!!! that gazebo works well for a greenhouse! cant believe how cold it is there!!!!! stay warm!!!!!

michaele said...

Amazing and impressive effort. I sure hope all your "babies" reward your heroic intervention and live on!

Anonymous said...

Candice, I am new to your blog. What an inspiration. With all your efforts, I'm sure your succulents will be ok! Great job, Stan! Mimi

Jessica said...

Your plants are having a party!

I have a jade plant on my south facing front porch. I planted it the day my friend had her now 9 nine year old son. It has offspring too now. I cover it with a cloth each night then it gets the morning sun. Do you think it will be OK?


Candice Suter.....Sweetstuff said...

Thank you so much for joining Mimi! Really glad to have you! And Jessica, sounds like what conditions mine is in. Except that mine is fulling under a porch. Is yours? And sometimes I cover it with frost cloth. It is worth the investment and does much better than just a towel or sheet. When it is sunny take it off so your plant can get the sun. If any parts looks translucent or turn black cut them off. It should grow back as Jade plants bounce back pretty good. Good luck!

Liza said...

Fun blog. I love what you did with the gazebo, it's nicely done! Thanks for sharing.

Katie from Gardening Succs said...

I am so impressed! This took a lot of work. I'm STILL in the process of moving mine in. I have a lot of little guys, and some of them have FROZEN SOLID. I had a flapjack popsicle on my hands recently. Then, of course, it thaws and turns into this lifeless, drooping THING. Depressing. Is it better for me to cut off those leaves or leave them?

These freezing temps are making California virtually uninhabitable right now, in my book! Brrr!

Candice Suter.....Sweetstuff said...

Hi Katie! I'm working on part 2. Definitely cut those off when they get mushy and start turning black. That means a bacterial or mold is getting in and can hurt the rest of the plant. And yes I agree with you. I don't even like to venture outside! Brrrr!

soupinella said...

Oh My! I can SO relate. I'm a bit new to growing succulents but I'm learning fast. As the cold weather approached, I new I had to protect my babies! My husband and I built a "greenhouse" lean-to against our back fence using 4 mm plastic sheeting and 2x2's....loaded the plants undercover but by the 2nd night of 28 degree weather(I live in the SF Bay Area), some of my plants were going to mush! So now I've moved them ALL into a spare bedroom and out of the cold! I've cut off all the "mush" and hoping to save them!
Good luck to us ALL......Sue