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Frost damage plants?

  1. Dec 28, 2006 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    Plants when exposed to frost can be badly damaged as the frost melts. Why? Explain how the damage can be minimised by spraying the plants with water.

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution
    It could be due to frost expand when in cells (i.e. from liquid water to ice, the volume of ice is larger than water) hence when turned it melts, the plant cells are ruptured. So spray water will fill the ruptured cells and so they look fresher or not saggy.

    Or it could be as frost melts, heat energy is absorbed so the surrounding air becomes cooler. The water sprayed on plants contain heat already so heat is sucked out of the added water instead of the plants themselves.

    Which is correct? Any other solutions?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 28, 2006 #2


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    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor


    http://www.elmhurst.edu/~chm/vchembook/122Adensityice.html [Broken]

    http://www.thermexcel.com/english/tables/eau_atm.htm - see density from 0 to 5°C.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  4. Dec 28, 2006 #3
    So my first answer is correct? The added liquid will fill the expanded cell walls so that the sight of damage is not made apparent.
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