Freeze Tolerance & Cold Sensitivity of Fruit Trees

I live in an area that sometimes gets a freeze, but in the last 3 winters I have only had to protect my plants on two overnight occasions. (Thanks global warming? eek, what a thought)

Freeze tolerance and cold hardiness of fruit treesThese are my personal notes for the plants I own and my own guide organized by temperature so that I know which plants to protect depending on the forecasted temperature.  The names for these hard to find numbers are numerous: Cold hardiness/tolerance/damage and Freeze hardiness, tolerance, or damage.

*Please note, there are many variables that effect whether a plant will survive a freeze.  An older tree can often survive a hard freeze of short duration.  If you live near a large body of water you will have a buffer effect that will create your own microclimate to protect your plants.  Plantings closer to your warm house will generally survive.  I scavanged the internet for most of these numbers which are only guidelines, please don’t be upset if you lose a plant in a freeze.  New growth is more susceptible to damage than mature growth.

Freeze & Cold Tolerances of Subtropical Fruit trees

Plant Name

Low Cold Tolerance/

Sensitivity (Older Trees)

High Cold Tolerance/

Sensitivity (Young Trees)

Sugar Apple?32
Peanut Butter Tree?32
Grumichama ?30
Barbados Cherry2730
Coconut Palms2630
Passion Fruit2430
Governors Plum2628
Surinam Cherry2428
Mysore Raspberry?27
Emerald Bamboo?25
Mulberry? (very low)25 (new growth damage)
Gumbo Limbo?25
Citrus TreesUpper Twenties31
Brogdon Avocado?22
Natal Plum?20
Guadalupe Palm?20
Capulin Cherry?19
Prickly Pear Cactus?15
Canary Island Date Palm?10
Pindo Jelly Palm?10
Crape Myrtle?0
Wax Myrtle?0
Red Maple?0
Raisin Tree?-10

Any of the subtropical fruit trees above that dip below the high limit (old or young) will likely loose their fruit in a freeze.  Some fruit, like citrus, have improved taste in a near freeze.

I hope this guide helps, leave a comment below if you have a suggestion for the table!  Find out how I protect my fruit trees during a freeze.

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