Sunday, December 5, 2010
Grandpa, Why are their Christmas lights weird?
This was the question posed by my neighbor’s grandson. He couldn’t wait to tell us how he tried to explain that we were protecting the citrus trees from freezing, but his grandson just couldn’t process the information.
That’s okay. I’m used to being misunderstood. But you can bet that the same grandson will be presented with an orange next summer.
Frost protection is a tricky business. I’ve often joked with Ed that what I really need is a couple of smudge pots. There’s nothing like the aroma of burning oil on a frosty morning. It smells like victory.
Instead, I use plastic and lights to ward off the cold. I drape 6 mil clear plastic over bent PVC pipe hoops, and then fasten it with clips I made so it doesn’t blow off. To protect my trees I used the same idea of forming a frame over them then added floating row cover or plastic. The trees are still small enough that this contraption works. I’ll have to come up with a new strategy as they grow.
Finding lights has not been easy. We go to the thrift stores to try to find the old fashioned kind that emit heat. The trouble is that you can't find replacement bulbs. Eventually I think I’ll just have to hang a heat light.
I wonder what the grandson will say about that?