Temperatures are dropping here in South Carolina, which means one of the biggest dangers to our precious crops is frost. The freezing cold conditions that create frost cause ice to form inside plant tissues. As we all know, water expands as it freezes into ice, so this expansion within a plant can cause its cell membranes to burst. This is physically damaging to a plant and can result in its death.
Clearly, frost is not good when it comes to keeping your crops alive and healthy. Irrigation methods, such as sprinkler systems, can help prevent frost from hurting your crops.
The method by which irrigation saves crops from frost is actually quite simple. Water is sprayed on the plants, covering the exterior of the crops. The water freezes in the cold weather, and in the process the heat inside the water is released and transfers to the plant, keeping its temperature from dropping below 32°F.
However, the ice that forms on the outside of the plant has to remain wet in order for the plant to stay at the freezing point. This is because if no more water is added to the ice, its temperature will drop below freezing and no more heat will be transferred to the plant, allowing its internal temperature to drop below freezing, as well. As long as water is added to the ice, the mixture of ice and water will remain at 32°F and will keep the plant’s temperature from dropping any further.
Here at W. P. Law, Inc., we specialize in fluid handling equipment for farmers and workers in other industries. We have some of the best irrigation equipment in all of South Carolina, and our agricultural engineering designers will set you up with whatever’s best for you. Find out what we can do for you by contacting W. P. Law’s experts. You can count on us to help you defeat the dangers of frost.