One sure way to mark the start of winter is by taking note of the day of the first frost. If you’re luckily, you’ll have prepared for it ahead of time but if you’re not, you’ll likely be left scrambling to save your sensitive plants and make sense of your half-frozen garden.
Today, we have a list of a few garden-saving tips that you can implement after the fall of the first frost and before the fall of the next. With any luck, some of them will prove to be helpful.
After First Frost
Water, water, water
After the first frost hits your garden, you might be thinking that your plants are ruined and, while that may be true for annuals, other types of plants might still push through. Since the presence of frost often means that the soil around your plants has frozen, your plants likely aren’t getting enough water to survive.
Help them out by watering the area – even if it’s frozen! Doing so will help thaw the soil and give your plant the moisture is needs.
Before Next Frost:
Cover sensitive plants
If you know that a frost is coming, take a few minutes to cover your most vulnerable plants. You should do this before nightfall, as this is when temperature reach their coldest and frost creeps over the ground.
You can cover your plants with anything from garbage bags and tarps to bed sheets. As a rule of thumb, anything that acts as a barrier between your plants’ leaves and the frost will work. Some gardeners even use things like large flowerpots turned upside down!
Warm with water jugs
Like humans, flowers can appreciate a bit of extra warmth during cold nights. So, to keep them warm enough to ward off frost, consider using the water jug trick.
This trick consists of leaving water jugs or milk jugs filled with water out in the sun to warm up. Then, at night before the frost hits, place the warmed water jugs beside your plants and cover both the plant and jug up for the night.
Relocate potted plants
Plants that are in containers can be moved before the frost sets in. Moving them to a location that is covered but not heated, such as onto a covered porch or into a shed is sufficient. There’s no need to bring them inside.
If your potted plants do end up staying uncovered and falling victim to frost, however, don’t rush to bring them inside. Heating them up this quickly can kill the plants; let them warm up slowly as the temperature rises outside.
Even though frost is a silent enemy that creeps in during the night (often without warning!), it doesn’t have to mean the destruction of your plants. By taking some extra care, you can safeguard your outdoor plants and help ensure that they have a long, healthy life.