Have you ever heard of something called “water vapor”?? Water vapor refers to water when it’s in the form of a gas instead of in the form of a liquid (like drinking water) or a solid (like ice cubes). It might be a little hard to understand, but it plays a big role in our weather!
One thing that happens when water vapor freezes is that snowflakes can form, but another thing that can happen is frost! Frost refers to the white or clear ice crystals that cover surfaces such as plant leaves, windows, sidewalks, and more!
Unlike snow, which forms in the air and then falls from the sky, frost grows closer to the ground on cold surfaces. Frost is the result of water vapor in the atmosphere that freezes directly into its solid state (ice) without first passing through its liquid state (water). – Neat!!
Frost can be harmful to certain plants because sometimes the plant won't be able to handle the cold of the ice!
Why do you think it might sometimes be a problem for people if a plant is harmed by frost? For example, if a person is trying to grow a certain plant in order to grow fruits or vegetables, do you think that frost could make that more difficult??
What have you learned about the way that plants grow? Are there some characteristics of certain plants that you think would help them when it's cold outside? How do plants prepare for winter??
Sources & links
Libbrecht, Kenneth G. “Guide to Frost.” SnowCrystals.com. California Institute of Technology. 8 Jan. 2010 “Winter Storms.” Weather Wiz Kids. 8 Jan. 2010 "water vapor." Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary. 2010. Merriam-Webster Online. 8 January 2010 "frost." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2010. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 08 Jan. 2010