10 Tips To Protect Plants From Frost

Frost is a hazard that all gardeners face, but luckily there are steps you can take to avoid being caught out and suffering damage to your plants. The first requirement is to keep an eye on the weather so you will be ready to take the necessary action. The ten easy ways to protect your plants from frost are described by Jill Spencer in her article which I found on the Dengarden website.

One day it’s 65 and sunny. The next, it’s 32 with snow on the ground. Yep, that’s spring?a magical time of year filled with burgeoning life and fluctuating thermometers.
For many of us, spring presents one of the year’s greatest gardening challenges: protecting tender new growth from damage due to cold. Frost damage, freezing death, root damage and frost cracks on bark are four primary negative effects of severe drops in the temperature.
In early spring, when the threat of frost is especially great, closely monitoring weather conditions via weather radio, TV, and/or websites for reports of expected cold spells is imperative. That way, when frost is predicted, you can prepare for it.
Here are 10 easy, practical methods I’ve used to reduce frost’s impact on my garden. One or more of them might easily work for you, too.
Sage in bloom against a background of Reemay over spring vegetables in our raised garden bed.
Sage in bloom against a background of Reemay over spring vegetables in our raised garden bed.
Source: Jill Spencer

Cover plants before nightfall.

If you?re going to cover up your plants before a hard frost, do so before dusk. If you wait until darkness falls, most of the stored heat in your garden will have dissipated.
No matter what type of cover you use, make sure that it extends down to the soil on each side. In the morning, after the frost has thawed, remove the covers.

Warm plants with water jugs.

Fill plastic milk jugs with water and place them in the sun, allowing them to soak up heat during the day. Before dusk, set the jugs around your plants and throw a cover over them. The water in the jugs will lose heat more slowly than the soil and the air, and the warmth it emits will keep your plants warm.

Water before a frost.

It may sound crazy, but watering around plants the night before a spring frost can actually protect them from freezing. During the night, the wet soil will release moisture into the air, which will raise the temperature and keep plants warmer.

See more at Dengarden
Feature photo: Jill Spencer