Cold weather makes it tough for plants and some people to survive in Wilmington

Reported by Lynda Figueredo - bio|email
Reported by Jon Evans - bio|email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Some of the coldest conditions in years are about to settle in over southeastern North Carolina.

The arctic blast could make it tough for some plants and people to survive without some help.

Workers at Lloyd's Greenery in Wilmington covered their crops Thursday afternoon.  They won't know what they've lost until the cold front passes through the area.

They say the plants may not die during the cold blast, but they fear the leaves could wilt.

"So, if it's really cold, it stays more tempered right below the tarp and it will keep the leaves from freezing and crop from freezing and dying," said designer Thomas Herzog.

Herzog advises gardners at home to cover their plants with tarps or bags, and try to bring smaller plants inside for shelter.

The frigid temperatures could also be life-threatening for people who don't have a place to call home.

The Good Shepherd Center is a place where individuals and families can find a hot meal and a warm bed.

The center usually houses more than 100 of Wilmington's homeless each night.  They expect to see even more as the temperatures drop.

The shelter's 118 beds are already full, so they have set up mats in the common area for new arrivals.

"Being at or close to capacity is not unusual to us, but when the weather is especially hot or cold like it has been the past few nights, we are expecting additional folks," said director Katrina Smith.

The Salvation Army shelter on 2nd Street in Wilmington has made room for about 20 extra people to spend the night.  They have also extended their hours.  They will be open around the clock throughout the weekend for people to get out of the cold.