Cold weather cover plants (copy)

Protect your tender and tropical plants when there's a freeze in the forecast.

It's time to layer up and protect your plants and pipes. Cold temperatures are expected in the Baton Rouge area, and could even dip into a freeze. 

The National Weather Service has issued a freeze waarning for Sunday night, forecasting a low of 31 degrees, though it warned 29 degrees is possible. If that happens, it would be close to a record. The lowest temperature ever recorded in Baton Rouge on March 19 was 30 degrees in 1923, according to data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. 

The National Weather Service said those in southeast Louisiana and parts of Mississippi should protect plants from the cold. 

Garden columnist Dan Gill says plastic is a lightweight and easy-to-use cover. Use stakes to hold the plastic up and off of the plant, especially during rainy weather when the plastic can become weighed down with water. 

It's also important to protect your indoor and outdoor pipes. To prevent freezing and potential bursting of pipes, they should be wrapped, drained or allowed to drip slowly. Faucet covers, wrap rags, and paper or trash bags all work well as insulation. 

Temperatures are expected to stay chilly through Monday, with a daytime high in the upper 50s and a low of 38 degrees overnight. On Tuesday, things will warm up dramatically. The National Weather Service predicts a sunny high near 70 on Tuesday, and temperatures climbing into the 80s as the week goes on.  

Email Rebecca Holland at or follow her on Twitter, @_rebeccaholland.