Preparing for the first frost can help prevent the unnecessary loss of your fall garden. Don’t let the first cold morning catch you by surprise. Follow Commercial Bag & Supply’s guide to prepare your garden for the first frost, and you can protect your flowers and autumn crops.
How to Prepare your Garden for the First Frost
-Cover your plants with a nursery cover before the sun sets. This will help retain heat underneath the cover and prevent frost from affecting your plants.
-If you use a plastic cover to retain heat, make sure to remove it in the morning as it might “cook” the plants by retaining too much heat in the daytime.
-If you’re growing cucumbers, cover them with newspapers. You can also use old bed sheets or straw since they are low-growing.
-Use paper grocery bags or trash bags to cover caged tomatoes, peppers, or eggplants.
-Vegetables that don’t need to be covered include cabbage, Chinese cabbage, brussel sprouts, broccoli, and cauliflower.
-Vegetables that can handle some frost include chives, peas, carrots, lettuce, and spinach.
-When a freeze is forecast, bring potted plants and flowers inside.
-Spread 2-2.5 inches of mulch around rock garden plants, perennials, alpine, strawberry, or plants with shallow roots after the soil has frozen. This added mulch will help protect your plant roots by preventing the soil from freezing.
After the First Freeze
If you’ve already experienced the first freeze, not all hope is lost. You’ll know when your plants have been damaged by a frost if the leaves have turned dark brown or black, or if they appear shriveled or look water-soaked. You can also protect plants from impending frost damage by watering them. This seems somewhat contradictory, but the water will help to maintain the internal temperatures of your plants above freezing.