MASON CITY - North Iowans will want to cover up their flowers, vegetables and other plants Wednesday night as possible record low temperatures sweep through the area.
"It wouldn't hurt to if you want to prolong their life a little bit," said Gary Hall, Iowa State University Extension regional education director.
Cerro Gordo, Worth, Hancock, Winnebago and Kossuth counties are all in a freeze watch late Wednesday night through Thursday morning.
Low temperatures overnight Wednesday are expected to be in the low 30s and will create patchy frost by Thursday morning, said Tyler Roney, meteorologist at KIMT-TV. Some of the temperatures could be record lows.
"It's very much so an early taste of fall," he said.
Some plants, however, might not be quite ready for fall yet.
Many flowering plants are starting to slow down, but for those that are still going Hall suggests covering them Wednesday night.
"What we cover them for is to get a little more enjoyment out of those flowers," Hall said.
Certain vegetables should also be covered for similar reasons.
"The tomatoes you might want to consider covering if you'd still like some more tomatoes," Hall said. "and that goes for other crops that are still producing."
As for corn and soybeans, most are far enough along that it shouldn't hurt the crops.
After the cold blast overnight low temperatures should rebound into the 50s and daytime highs should be in the upper 60s to lower 70s by the weekend.