A skim of ice
The creatures' water bowls are lightly iced over this morning, not frozen solid, and the ones on the south side of the house have thicker ice than those on the north side. It's a good thing that we thought to bring tomato seedlings indoors last evening. We may be sorry that we didn't do the same thing for tiny pots of violas. It's likely that four o'clocks will have collapsed by the end of the day. Before last night, despite all the warnings about cold temperatures, the only damage had been to one hyacinth bean, in a hanging pot. We'll know more by tomorrow about any damage suffered this time around. Flowers still looking fine are cosmos, fennel, a tithonia, milkweed in pots (two kinds of asclepias), pink oxalis, and some calendulas. All in-ground seedlings, including hollyhocks and everything else, seem to be fine. On the north side of the house, various plants that winter indoors but that are still outdoors seem to have suffered no damage. Even potted basil appears just as it did yesterday. Lantana plants in some places may be affected around the edges of the leaves. Mockingbirds have been depending heavily on their berries this year. Loquats appear to be unaffected; on them some fruits are in formation, and the flowers continue to attrct clouds of honeybees. Peas and sweet peas continue to flourish; whether various lettuces are in good shape remains to be seen. Yesterday, pecan and fig leaves began falling in good earnest. Monarch butterflies have been gone for about a week and a half ago. Two stalks of paperwhite narcissus have been open for three days. Their perfume is strong, but loquat flowers are still outdoing them.