The silk frost, or hair ice, is not actually formed like frost, which is deposition of air moisture as ice on a surface. Hair ice forms on the surface of wood underneath the bark or on bark-free areas. It is believed to be the result of supercooled water emerging through the surface of the wood and freezing, thus pushing the thin water crystal further out. Supercooled water is liquid water below its freezing point, which can happen if it was cooled off very quickly so it doesn’t have time to create seed crystals from which ice grows; such water normally exists in certain types of clouds.
You can see the chemical composition behind the process here:
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