Up and down temperatures affecting fruit trees

Posted at 6:01 AM, Feb 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-20 07:01:00-05

Doug Ritchie says he's been planting fruit trees for years, and although the weather has been nice he's worried about his fruit when it gets cold again.

"I end up with a tree that doesn't produce any apples because all the buds freeze, so that is a big concern for me because the weather has been so nice."

Fruit tree expert Shawn McKee says mother nature has gotten ahead of herself so buds have started to sprout.

"The tree is thinking that spring is here so that's what makes it more susceptible to frost and freezing weather."

This week’s expected temperature drop can weaken these buds and slow down production.

"12 degrees would be a harder frost and anything below is really going to cause damage."

With no real preparation but to just watch and see.

"We are just going to have to wait around and see what Mother Nature gives us."

Although every tree is different McKee says the cold weather headed this way should not stop growth.

"Keep it as healthy as you possibly can, so when it goes through times like this it can adapt and snap back as quickly as possible."

Ritchie says he’s hopeful the cold weather won't bring disaster for his trees.

"I’m not seeing the buds advance to the point where I think there will be a problem."

So he says he'll be watching the weather and his trees closely.

"As long as we stay above 12 degrees I will be happy about that.”