COLUMBIA — Old Man Winter will come out of retirement tonight as a freeze warning is in effect for Columbia from 11 p.m. Monday until 9 a.m. Tuesday.
The National Weather Service in St. Louis predicted Monday night's temperatures in the mid-20s to low 30s, as of early Monday morning. The normal low temperature on April 14 is 44 degrees, according to the National Weather Service.
Columbia's average last freeze is April 10, the latest freeze was on May 9, 1906, according to National Weather Service records.
A mixture of rain and snow will fall between 1 and 5 p.m. Monday, according to meteorologist Jayson Gosselin.
“Accumulation will be on elevated surfaces. It won’t come down hard enough to accumulate on pavement and grass,” he said.
Gosselin said the cold temperatures and mixed precipitation come from a strong cold front that moved through mid-Missouri on Sunday and a secondary weather system passing through Kansas on Monday.
Strawberry Hill Farms owner Amy Sapp said the weekend's mild temperatures inspired customers to buy plants, but she cautioned them about planting them given this week's forecast.
"We knew it was coming," she said. "We've been warning our customers this weekend: If they bought flowers they need to cover them and keep them inside as it got cold this week."
Sapp said plants should be covered with a sheet or blanket because they can still freeze when covered by a plastic bucket.
Gosselin said that another freeze warning may be issued Tuesday night, when temperatures are predicted to reach or surpass freezing levels.
Sapp said many customers bought plants anyway, claiming they would store them in garages until the freeze is over.
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