When Taiwan is struck by a cold front, even the people lived in usually-warm Taitung County can feel the effects. Before the cold front coming, Taitung Forest District Office covered the ground in the nurseries with rice, rice husks and sawdust, adding insulating shade mesh and protective canvas on top to protect the vulnerable young seedlings. The measures were completed for the 300,000 seedlings before the cold front coming.
The first cold front of the year began moving southwards on the evening of February 8. The strength of the cold wave could be felt in the daytime and it was forecasted that temperatures would drop to 10 Celsius degrees. There are three nurseries, namely Taitung, Ruiyuan and Longquan in the Taitung Forest District Office. At present, the number of seedlings totals over 300,000. The seedlings are provided to governmental agencies of all levels and the general public in Taitung County for greening purposes, as well as for afforestation in short-term economic forests, flatlands, coastal forests and national forests. Due to the fragility of young seedlings and their susceptibility to cold, various prevention measures were adopted by the Forest District Office including covering the nursery beds with thick shade nets to protect the seedlings against the cold.
Liu Chiung-lien, the director of the Taitung Forest District Office, who reminded farmers to take precautions in advance to minimize losses. The Forest District Office also provided tips for protecting crops against cold, such as preparing cold covers (shade nets, plastic sheets and black canvases), covering the nursery beds with rice, rice husks or sawdust for insulation, and loosening frozen soil early or covering grass and soil. By preparing in advance, damage can be reduced to a minimum.