It's Getting Cold in the Tri-Cities, Tips to Prepare for Winter - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

It's Getting Cold in the Tri-Cities, Tips to Prepare for Winter

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KENNEWICK, Wash.-- Temperatures have been getting cooler at night, so that means it's time to get ready for winter. Two essentials are lawn/ garden care and car maintenance.

KNDU spoke with Bob Brown, a WSU Master Gardner.  He says with the right garden care, he can keep his tomatoes growing through December.  Brown says you need to start winter care for your plants as soon as temperatures get down into the 30s.  He explains, "Like you want warmer clothes on during the winter months, the plants do too."  So put tarps and blankets over your outdoor plants every night.  Brown says covering your plants works until it gets down to about 15 degrees.

Before it gets that cold, you also need to take care of your sprinkler system.  Once your irrigation water has been shut off, get the system blown out.  Tom Perkes, Corporate Marketing Manager of Senske Lawn Care, says, "Basically they're just blowing all the water out of the system so that you have just air inside there because as water freezes, it expands, and can crack the pipes." 

Perkes also says, make sure you give your lawn the proper nutrients.  "Like a bear does before it gets ready for winter, it gets itself stocked up on its minerals, gets itself fattened up.  You can do the same for your lawn. You can operate certain types of fertilizers."

Another thing to keep in mind before the winter is your car. Assistant Manager at Jiffy Lube, Cody Moore, says, "Change the coolant in the vehicle, so that you can have the protection you need for the coming winter months and the cold.  It's going to lubricate all the working parts of your coolant system."

Cars always take longer to heat up in the winter, but you don't need to warm up all types of cars for a long time.  Moore says only the ones with carburetors need to be warmed up for a while.  When you're warming up your car, don't leave  it unlocked and running in your driveway, that makes it an easy target for car thieves.