You know Florida, it can be cold one day and warm the next. In fact we could go the rest of the winter without another frost or freeze. It has happened before. But I guess what we all want to know is what do we do with the cold damaged plants?
This winter has been different. Many areas have been frosted or frozen and then others are surviving without injury. The line seems to be from Altamonte Springs northward. If you are above this line, you are probably seeing plant injury.
My tomatoes are gone. The cold caused the plants to decline and they are now being removed from the garden. Some plants seemingly affected by just a chill include coleus, marigolds, pentas and such. If they are not frozen, their vigor is reduced. All are being pulled out and replaced in just a month or two. By the way, now is the time to start your new seedlings. It takes 6 weeks to produce a good transplant at this time of the year.
Some plants like the bananas might not produce a crop this year but are going to grow back. Actually they don't like temperatures much below 40 degrees. Mine are full of yellow leaves but the bud inside is alive.
And the hands of banana fruits pictured are not going to mature. Even if they did, they would have the texture and taste of cardboard. This trunk is going to be removed shortly, If trunks without fruit do not receive more cold, the buds inside should send out new leaves and later a flower stalk. That means we could get bananas from these plants during the summer.
The cannas look bad but a good cold snap just sends them into a dormant state. They will be back with the first consistently warm weather. Some foliage plants left outdoors are not happy either. Ones like the pothos and aglaonema don't appreciate a dip below 50 degrees. The leaves are yellowing and I expect some die back. But when given some trimming and warmth they should recover.
Here is the big question. When can I start pruning all the dead away? I personally do not believe the dead portions help to protect the plants. On the other hand, I don't see where there is a need to be in a rush to do the pruning. Give the plants a week or so to see what is really dead and alive. Then you can do the pruning.
And yes, we could get more cold and then again maybe we won't. If you have been in Florida for a while you probably remember it has happened before - The rest of the winter stayed warmish through spring.