Temperatures have struggled to warm up today as clouds are slowly exiting the area. As the clouds depart, little time is left for us to warm, but the clear skies will allow temperatures to drop off very quickly after sunset. The result will be a very cold night with lows dropping to record levels across the area. Frost will develop in outlying and colder locations tonight, so you will want to protect sensitive plants. Some tips are listed below from the University of California.
We warm up through the weekend and into the mid 70s for next week before our next rain chance on Wednesday. Most of the energy with this system looks to remain to our north, so severe weather is currently not expected.
Tips to Protect Plants Tonight:
Water the soil thoroughly (except around succulents). Wet soil holds heat better than dry soil, protecting roots and warming air near the soil.
Bed sheets, drop cloths, blankets and plastic sheets make suitable covers for vulnerable plants. Use stakes to keep material, especially plastic, from touching foliage.
Remove the coverings when temperatures rise the next day.
For a short cold period, low plantings can be covered with mulch, such as straw or leaf mold. Remove once the danger of frost has passed.
Place a 100-watt lamp designed for outdoor use in the interior of a small tree. It can emit enough warmth to reduce frost damage. Holiday lights (not the LED type) serve a similar function, but be sure they don’t touch any covering materials.
Spray an anti-transpirant, available at your local nursery, on the foliage of cold-sensitive plants to seal in moisture. One application can protect up to three months by coating the leaves with an invisible polymer film.
Cluster container plants close together and, if possible, in a sheltered spot close to the house.