Published On: Thu, Dec 30th, 2010

Cold front affects winter fashion–citrus crop

By Jennifer Ortega

With a blast of cold weather and a massive dip in temperatures–winter for South Florida continues!

In Florida, it’s a rarity when winter jackets and scarves become our new best friends. But that was the case last week as temperatures dropped to the 60’s and below. Boca Raton experienced its own version of a white Christmas.

With another winter system sweeping through the east coast carrying cold Arctic air behind it, we will be affected throughout the week and into 2011. So, look forward to a cold New Years–and don’t forget to bundle up!

Even Florida’s crops are feeling the freeze. Low temperatures this week have shattered records across the state, some of which have stood for over fifty years. Walking into a local grocery store, I noticed the decrease of fruits and vegetables; the weather has definitely affected our produce.

Apart from affecting clothing options, the recent Florida freeze had a far more devastating effect on the citrus crop.  Fruits like oranges, tangerines, and Minneola tangelo have had the most damage. Additionally, because of extensive damage to the juice crop, less orange juice will be available.

Other produce like celery, tomatoes, cucumbers, strawberries, green bell peppers, green beans, and summer squash have also been affected by the temperatures, slowing down crop production and increasing prices.

Although a lot of us are enjoying this cold weather for the excuse to wear fashionable winter wear, it’s not exactly peachy for our farming neighbors as our crops freeze and become damaged. For the time being, though, South Florida will remain cold, but hopefully, in 2011, weather in Florida will get back to normal and we can put the pea coats and gloves back in the closet.