Preventing Frost Damage
Since we have a large number of plants that are leafed out about a month early, the chances of most people experiencing a freeze or frost with vulnerable plants is pretty high. Next week here in MA we have temps of 29 forecast for Monday and Tuesday night. Most of my Hosta are sleeping the way they should, but I do have a few that are starting to unfurl. I know many of you have a large number of fully leafed out plants. So what do you do when faced with a freeze or frost. Last week I was at a talk by Roger Swain (former Victory Garden host) and he addressed this issue. Here's what I got:
1. Bring in those plants that you are able to move. Put them in the garage, on a 3 season porch, or in your basement, but if you can move it, do it.
2. Get out the lawn sprinker (still have that Rainbird, Ken?) and leave it on overnight. Ice releases heat when it freezes.
3. Cover plants. Don't use plastic sheeting. Frost will go right through it. Use newspapers, old bed sheets, quilts, pots, whatever you've got. Don't take it off until the temps are above freezing in the morning. Get your stuff ready now and put it in a place where you can get it easily.
4. Pulling mulch back from around the plant will allow the soil to release heat during the night.
What else have I left out? What will you do if you get a frost/freeze?