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I'm growing a bunch of trees in pots and have been keeping them in the yard. A storm with high winds is expected (~20mph) and as I bring some items indoors (e.g. a flag, light pots hanging from a railing), I wonder if I should do something for the potted trees.

Right now I brought some of the younger and more delicate (grafted) potted trees into an enclosed porch, and I laid the larger potted trees gently down on their side. I'm hoping this will prevent wind from blowing the trees over (not gently) and in case any overhead branches fall on them, the damage may not be as catastrophic to their long-term growth.

Is there a standard practice for preparing outdoor potted nursery plants for tornado and hurricane conditions?

  • whoa...@cro! A tornado? A regular wind/rain/thunderstorm you have done the best things possible. I'd bring everything indoors that I wanted to protect. But a tornado? Where is it you live? 20 mph is no big deal. I'd still bring my plants indoors. People who throw newbie plants into the back of their trucks to zoom home at 40mph are in for a surprise. I've got wind screen. This black plastic covering that allows some wind through so that the screen material doesn't beat the plants to bits...comes in different thicknesses. What you have done is more than others would even think to do! – stormy May 1 '17 at 23:43
  • NOAA broadcasted a tornado warning for my area but local weather stations predicted ~20mph winds. Turned out to be 20mph max winds but 40mph gusts, which is how the storm got classified as a tornado I imagine. – cr0 May 2 '17 at 15:32
  • Glad to know my method made sense. The trees left outdoors on their side were well-watered but fine, and the indoor ones were of course OK. I may write it up as an answer later. @stormy I'll be posting another question on how to move plants in a pickup truck! – cr0 May 2 '17 at 15:37
  • There is only one thing you need for that. There is fabric, black, plastic type stuff used primarily for shading greenhouses. 20%, 30%, 50%...just need to get yourself a big chunk and keep it in the back of your truck weighed down. Throw that over your plants that are laid down pointing towards the tail gate, or over the tail gate. Tie it down well. Tarps will beat the plants worse than the wind will. This screen doesn't 'catch' the wind, just severely slows it down so the leaves don't beat themselves up. Works wonders. I talked my nurseries into carrying chunks to sell...@cr0 – stormy May 2 '17 at 17:59

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