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Late hard freeze threatens San Antonio, farther south

Late season freeze expected according to map from NWS-San Antonio.
NWS-San Antonio
Late season freeze expected according to map from NWS-San Antonio.

San Antonio's last freeze of the winter is usually around March 1, so the freeze expected to come early Saturday morning may have caught a few gardeners off guard.

If you have already planted in the ground, you'll definitely want to cover those plants by Friday night. Bring established container plants inside or cover them, too. Temperatures will dip to freezing or below for five hours before and just after sunrise on Saturday, even in the city center. Colder temperatures are expected across the Hill Country.

Cover faucets and let dogs and cats in.

The National Weather Service reports wind chills will be in the 20s through Friday night due to wind gusts up to 35 and 45 mph. A wind advisory is in effect through midnight Friday.

Forecasters said gusty winds could blow around unsecured objects, like patio furniture. Tree limbs could be blown down and a few power outages could happen.

Drivers of high-profile vehicles, like tractor-trailers and even pickups, will be jostled by the winds.

There is a danger of grass fires due to dry conditions, gusty winds and low humidity, especially west of U.S. 281. The Texas Forest Service reports a grass fire in Burnet County consumed 17 acres on Friday, but is now 90% contained. A large grass fire in Bexar County just last week scorched around 200 acres at Camp Bullis.

Several cold fronts this time of year usually bring some rain, but 2022 remains off to a dry and brittle start. This cold front is also dry. The U.S. Drought Monitor reports the entire southern quarter of Bexar County is now considered to be in severe drought condition, while the upper three quarters of the county are in moderate drought conditions.

LaSalle, McMullen, Live Oak, Bee and Goliad Counties will see their first hard freeze early Saturday. A freeze warning is in effect for those counties from 3 a.m. to 8 a.m. Saturday.

The weather service reports frost and freeze conditions in those counties will kill crops and other sensitive damage. It also called on residents to protect outdoor plumbing from the hard freeze.

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