MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) – Farmers in Middle Tennessee took precautions to protect their crops from frost/freeze when temperatures took a nosedive Wednesday night into Thursday morning.
“It’s almost berry-picking time. We’re starting to get a little bit of red on these berries and so with the conditions like we’ve had the last couple of days, we had to pull out our bedsheets and cover about five acres of strawberries,” said Brandon Whitt.
The berries were covered up to keep them protected from any frost using a blanket made of a material similar to cheesecloth. Whitt said they wanted to make sure frost didn’t settle on the berries or the blooms, and the protective cover worked down to 28 degrees.
“In the field here this morning it’s about 34 degrees so we haven’t dipped below freezing which is really important,” Whitt said. “We dodged a bullet here this morning.”
They also used another protective method by watering some of the strawberry plants.
“We can either use the row covers or we can use some overhead irrigation that actually washes the frost off before the sun starts to rise so we’ve got water running on a part of the patch this morning,” Whitt explained. “Since we’re above freezing we’re able to wash the frost off before the sunlight hits it and kills the blooms.”
He said they’re hoping to have the strawberries ready to be picked by next week.