Good reminder for people to protect the four P's as cold weather hits Central Texas

Cold weather hits Central Texas which is a good reminder for people to protect the four “P's.”

Rolling in this week is an arctic cold front, which means temperatures are dropping and people need to be prepared. For many Austin residents like Susanna Havens, that’s her garden, “I have an olive tree and a lemon tree which I had to bring in, because it's too cold for the lemons,” she said.

Plants are just one of the 4 P’s people need to remember during cold weather. They are people, pets, pipes, and plants.
For people, you want to    check on anyone who may need help. Avoid activities outside when there's extreme cold and if you do have to go out, bundle up.  Check furnaces and space heaters to make sure they're working properly. 

During extreme weather our four-legged friends should be kept indoors. Try not to shave your pets and keep their fur short, this can lead to hypothermia and frostbite. If you have a short haired animal, think about getting them a sweater.

Pipes usually do not freeze until the temperatures drops into the 20s, but pipes in windy areas could experience cracking. Keep your pipes insulated, and you can let faucets drip inside and outside which prevents freezing.

Lastly plants if you've waited until the last minute, you need to pick the citrus fruits off your trees.  Tom Tinguely of the “Great Outdoors Nursery” said you should know your garden and which plants need to be taken indoors or covered. “This is called insulate, it's a frost fabric. It allows air and water through, it doesn't really get wet, it allows the moisture in the air to pass right through, the plants do very well underneath and you can leave it on, you can leave it on for weeks if you'd like,” Tinguely said.

Despite that cold chill coming, Susanna said her garden is what gets her through these sometimes cold days. “It makes me feel really really good and at peace. If I've had a chaotic day or a bad incident happens in my life, if I am out in the garden, gosh I feel so much better,” she said.

A fun tip, for those plants you are hoping to get just a little more life out of this season, Tinguely said you can try using Christmas lights under the covers; they give off just the right amount of heat.
               
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