Definition - What does Cold Tolerance mean?
As the name suggests, cold tolerance is the ability of a plant to tolerate cold conditions. While the hardiness of a plant illustrates the ability of a plant to tolerate all types of weather ranging from heat to cold, cold tolerance is specifically the ability of a plant to withstand cold climate.
MaximumYield explains Cold Tolerance
Most plants do not grow during extreme cold conditions. Plants have two parts: above ground and underground. The parts above ground are under chilling stress in temperatures between 32°F-59°F and frost stress when the temperatures drop below 32°F. The roots can survive these temperatures because the leaves fall before winter and the soil insulates the roots.
Given that different plants are native to different regions, there is a cold tolerance limit for each plant. This should be kept in mind while planting them in natural environments and even while planting them in controlled environment.
For example, plants like cucumber and corn have a different cold stress temperatures than apple twigs. Understanding the hardiness of plants, their growing condition and their cold tolerance will provide better yield and maximize the plant life.