As I am sure all of you are aware, last week was not kind to North Central Florida with freezing nights and days routinely in the 40s.
As always, Butterfly Rainforest staff members were up to the task of protecting the exhibit from the longest stretch of cold weather our area has seen since 2010. Enduring a constant drizzle, staff worked all day to ensure that as much vegetation as possible survived the low temperatures, including climbing into waterfalls to cover them with cloths to capture and radiate the heat from the water. By 5:30 p.m., all plants that could be reached were covered, leaving only our tallest trees and all plants on the center island, which is also protected by the warm water that surrounds it.
After six days, staff uncovered the exhibit on Sunday, Jan. 7, to see that all of our efforts paid off. A handful of plants have shown some damage, but it appears that as of this writing, the vast majority of the exhibit survived with little or no serious damage.
The Rambles would like to thank the Butterfly Rainforest staff for doing such an amazing job, and I hope you all get a chance to see just how well they did by taking a stroll through the exhibit in the coming days. Let us hope that this is the worst this winter has to offer.