York County farmers said Thursday their strawberries were fine after temperatures dropped into the 30s earlier in the day.
But the farmers were bracing for another cold night after the National Weather Service posted frost warning for the early morning hours Friday.
Susan Hall’s husband owns the Bush-n-Vine on Filbert Highway in York.
“It definitely frosted,” she said. “We don’t have any problem with the strawberries because we were able to irrigate those and keep the frost off of them.”
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Irrigating the berries, which involves spraying them with water to prevent frost, is one of the methods Bush-n-Vine Farm workers use to protect the crop.
“Hopefully, we won’t have to implement anything else,” she said.
Most local strawberry crops are further along than normal because of the unusually mild winter and warm spring.
Other farm crops, including blueberries and peaches, were checked later in the day and don’t appear to have been affected, although Susan Hall said the peaches might take a few days to show any damage.
The farm also has tomatoes, corn and lettuce in the ground, but Hall said cool weather typically doesn’t bother them.
Hall said workers planned to cover the berries with row covers Thursday night.
It’s another method used to help ward off frost, said Spring Farms manager Ron Edwards. Their strawberries are available at the Peach Stand on S.C. 160 in Fort Mill.
“We covered everything up with row covers, even our blackberries and cucumbers,” he said. “We did fine.”
The row covers are made of a cloth and come in different ounce sizes, depending on how much sunlight the farmers want to let touch the crops.
“We have strawberries now,” Edwards said, “but it’s the blooms we were trying to protect. It’s hard to have (Fort Mill’s annual) Strawberry Festival without any strawberries.”
The strawberry festival runs May 1 through 5 in downtown Fort Mill.