How to Protect Trees From Frost: 4 Tips

The Sunshine State might be synonymous with balmy breezes and sun-drenched beaches, but don’t let that fool you into complacency. Every so often, the mercury dips a tad bit too far and wreaks havoc on our arboreal specimens. 

As Gainesville’s top-rated tree service, we at Top Tier Tree Specialist know how to protect trees from frost. Keep reading to learn more about how to help preserve your living landscape.

how to protect trees from frost

1. Keep a Close Eye on These Varieties

Unlike pines and spruces with built-in defense mechanisms for the winter months, certain species have the opposite fortune. From thin-barked varieties to fleshy foliage, stay extra vigilant about the following kinds of trees:


  • Citrus
  • Jacaranda
  • Catalpa
  • Oleander
  • Eugenia
  • Other tropical or subtropical flora

If you have plenty of these types in your yard, don’t worry. Knowing how to protect trees from frost and a little preparation can go a long way in ensuring their survival.

2. Act Before the Big Freeze

Prevention is always better than a cure, and this holds true in gardening as well. When the forecast predicts a cold front, implement these strategies as soon as you can:

Install Protective Coverings

Shield susceptible flora and young trees with burlap, sheets, tarps, and other similar materials, and make sure it extends to the ground to trap the soil’s accumulated warmth. We recommend using frames or stakes to minimize contact between the foliage and the cover, reducing the risk of excessive moisture accumulation.

Water Your Plants Thoroughly 

Believe it or not, a well-watered tree is less likely to become frostbitten because of two mechanisms. Moist soil retains heat better than dry, acting like a thermal blanket for the roots. Next, regularly watered plants are healthier overall, and thus better equipped to withstand a freeze.

3. Help Your Trees Recover

Even when the weather returns to its habitual warmth, the silent effects of frost can linger in your garden, potentially leading to tree death. Follow these steps to nurse your green friends back to health:

Hold Off on Pruning

You might feel the urge to break out those garden shears and gently snip off the frostbitten branches, but resist this impulse. Premature pruning may accidentally remove live tissue, causing more harm than good. 

Remove Damaged Fruit

Frosty or mushy fruit will eventually rot and attract unwanted pests. It’s best to pluck them off the tree and use them to make snacks, juice, or compost. 

Protect Weakened Specimens from the Sun

If some of your trees have experienced excessive dieback, shield the trunk with a plastic tree guard or whitewash (1:1 ratio of water and latex paint).

4. Consult a Local Arborist

Our hardiness zones might not face the chilliest winters, but our plants can still get frostbite. Safeguard both your older and newly planted trees by partnering with Top Tier Tree Specialist!

We know how to protect trees from frost and save you from unnecessary stress and expenses — dial (352) 472-8733 today!

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