It's the middle of April, but tonight the Tristate faces a freeze warning.
"I'm putting a layer of straw on top of the strawberries to protect the blooms, because those blooms are going to be strawberries, if the frost doesn't kill them." Cecelia Garrison and her husband bought High Hill Orchard & Farm in Henderson County last July. The first time orchard owners find themselves in the middle of a battle against Jack Frost over staying his welcome. "I'm thankful they are not calling for it to be any worse, but it's right on the edge," says Garrison.
It's the calm before the storm. Today Garrison prepares for the chilling night ahead. "Tonight, because it is going to get so cold, they are recommending at the state level that strawberry growers put a double layer." Garrison says she's doing all she can to protect the orchard's numerous berries and peaches by covering them in hay and taking any precautions she can. "We're just going to lay low, say a prayer, hope that it's just taken care of because I cant change the weather."
Garrison knows she can't change the weather, but she's doing what she can to stay ahead of it. Chief Meteorologist Wayne Hart tells us tonight the Tristate faces a freeze warning, and says it's not the first time for this freeze.
This orchard owner says she does have a backup plan, bringing out this machine called the 'Frost Dragon,' to warm up the orchard if the weather puts up a fight. "You pull it up and down the orchard all night. It creates kind of a micro-climate around the trees. It can actually prevent frost from forming, and it can keep the temperature three, four, or five degrees warmer than the rest of the area," says Garrison.
The freeze warning starts around 1 a.m. into the morning.
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