During this upcoming cold snap here in Texas, you should take care in protecting young trees to the extreme temperatures that will get down to around 5 degrees or less in some places around Abilene, Brownwood, and Weatherford, TX. The Texas Freeze that’s forecast will be nothing like 2021 but it will impact small saplings.
Covering the root zone will help insulate the soil, retain moisture, and regulate the soil temperature.
The recent rains we’ve had in the Abilene area have resulted in the soil being able to retain heat better than dry soil.
You can wrap small trees with blankets, towels, burlap or purchase frost cloth from local nurseries. You need to cover the trunk and vulnerable branches if you can. Make certain the cover reaches the ground to trap head. DO NOT USE PLASTIC! Plastic actually transmits cold to whatever part of a plant that is covered.
Small tree trunks can also be wrapped with burlap or tree wrap to protect the bark from damage and the freezing temperatures.
If you are looking to plant some new trees on your property, make sure you choose trees and species that are well adapted to the local climate and more resistant to cold temperatures. Trees that grow well in south Texas will not survive here in West Texas.