Beware the Winter Fourties

Agrotica > Miscellaneous  > Beware the Winter Fourties

Beware the Winter Fourties

Everyone awaits it and anticipates what it has in store
Every year, it pours down different and fresh
It means abundant yields and copious seasons
It is also drought and earth drat its most desolate

What are Winter Fourties?

Winter fourties is a period that extends from the last quarter of December and the end of January, hence its naming. It is considered an important and critical period, especially for farmers and agricultural lands.

How does it manifest?

The main characteristics of winter fourties are as follows:
1. Very cold and temperatures that drop below zero
2. Frost formation as a result of low temperature
3. Heavy thunderstorms and snowfall, whether on high altitudes or coastal areas

Most vulnerable agricultural areas

Coastal areas are the most affected by this weather as greenhouses are heavily affected by storms which can lead to their partial or complete destruction. The danger lies in the formation of prolonged frosts that kill plants, sweeping away seasons and wiping out yields.

Most affected crops

Greenhouse Plants: Tomato – Eggplant – Pepper – Cucumber
Open Field Plants: Onions – Garlic

Tolerant crops

Plants: Flower – Cabbage Carrot – Potato
Trees: Evergreen Trees
It is worth noting that deciduous trees need a specific cold period (chilling hours) to ensure that the proper budding and growth process takes place.

How does frost destroy plant cells?

The drop in temperatures below zero leads to damaged plant tissues, which appears in the form of leaf yellowing. This damage is attributed to the freezing of the plant sap inside the tissues as a result of the low temperature. This freezing leads to an increase in the volume of the sap, which quickly leads to tissue destruction and death of the plant.

Are there any upsdes?

  • Winter Fourties does not only bring negative impacts on agriculture. This climatic phenomenon can carry some agricultural benefits, including:
    Preventing the formation of diseases on crops (viral and fungal diseases) as a result of temperatures dropping below zero.
  • Eliminating insects at all stages.
  • Sterilization of soil that is devoid of harmful organisms due to the formation of frost and snowfall.
Maryse Bou Zeid

No Comments

Post a Comment