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Name: John S.
Status: other
Age: 30s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: Thursday, June 06, 2002


Question:
As part of a science report on the differences in climate zones, my kid is trying to determine the temperatures necessary to freeze common plants and weeds.


Replies:
This is not an easy experiment for several reasons: 1. Are you willing to donate the use of your family's refrigerator for several weeks. I think the answer is no. The alternative is to purchase a small "dorm" refrigerator for $80-$150 from a discount store or maybe second hand. 2. There are a number of variables that need to be decided. A. Type of plants. B. The temperature(s), which must be set and kept constant for some period of time (to be determined) -- or will the temperature just be a "cold snap" in the freezer for an hour or so. C. The age of the plant -- young plants are more likely to be sensitive than older ones. D. What is the criteria of passing/failing? E. If the exposure time is more than a day or so, you may need to water the test plants to distinguish freezing from dehydration. Your son/daughter will need to think these things.

Vince Calder


Each of the following includes a table with frost tolerance/sensitivity of different plants:

http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/hort/hil/pdf/hil-552.pdf

http://www.hort.purdue.edu/ext/fallgarden.html

Also possibly of interest:

http://www.earthsky.com/2002/esmi020104.html

Anthony R. Brach, Ph.D.



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