Winter Covers for Outdoor Plants
The Winter Covers for Outdoor Plants helps to extend the flowering and harvest seasons. These covers are available in various roll sizes.
Shipping estimates shown on the map pertain to this specific product only. Frost Protectoin Fabric orders typically ship same day if the order is placed before 12:00 noon CST. Transit times displayed in the map are listed in business days, and are approximate. Transit times are subject to stock levels at regional warehouses. The day that the order is shipped is not counted as a transit day.
Weather can be unpredictable from autumn through winter and in some cases even spring! The temperatures can dip bringing in freezing weather than suddenly turn warmer. It can be difficult to plan how to take care of your plants and continue to enjoy the harvest for a longer period of time. It's actually quite normal for temperatures to drop below freezing in late September and early October, depending on your location. When temperatures fluctuate without warning, it can be very difficult to plan ahead.
In many regions, it's quite common for plants to come out of dormancy in late March and early April then followed by freezing weather that will destroy your plants if they are not protected. If you keep up with the weather, you can protect your plants during the first frost or an unexpected freeze event allowing you to continue enjoying your harvest just a little bit longer.
In this article, we will go over some tips for protecting your garden from freezing temperatures in fall and spring.
Frost Blankets Used in Winter
Frost develops when ice crystals form on the surface of a leaves' surface even if the temperature is above freezing. What's happened, the plant surface will cool down to the level of freezing and if plants, especially sensitive plants, break dormancy due to warmer temperatures, buds and flowers can be killed.
A Freeze can be more destructive than frost. Freezing will take place when the air and the interior of the plant drops below 32°F. When a freeze hits, plant cells can freeze damaging the cellular tissue and causing the plant's tissue to turn brown or black, wilt, and then collapse.
Some freezes are not alike. Advection freezes are formed when a mass of dry, cold air mass enters an area followed by windy conditions. A radiation freeze happens during clear, calm evenings. Radiation freeze will occur when cold air settles on the ground and warm air disappears into the upper atmosphere.
Everything from vegetables, to annuals, that are grown outside need a lot of protection during an early frost or if it freezes.
On the other hand, perennials, woody shrubs, roses, small trees, and other woody plants are not that necessary to protect. These plants need to experience cold temperatures in order to enter dormancy. Also, most perennials and woody plants can tolerate temperatures at or just below freezing with very little damage.
Once September hits, it's a good idea to keep an eye on the forecast and pay attention to the temperatures overnight. When the temperatures fall around 30s °F, you will have to bring in plants and cover other plants, using cold frames and hoop tunnels.
When the weather gets really bad, bring your plants inside, it's the easiest way to protect them. Potted tropical and annual containers can be placed in a heated room, an inside porch, or other protected room including a garage to keep them safe overnight.
If you have plants that you cannot move easily, you can protect them with coverings such as sheets, blankets, towels, tarps, frost fabric, or other materials. Plant covers collect heat from the ground preventing frost from forming on leaves and reduce the chance of plants freezing.
While covering, use stakes, posts, saw horses, loops, or other structures to lift the covers so they will not hit the foliage. The next day when the temperature is above freezing, remove the covers.
Cold frames and Hoop tunnels will trap heat from the soil to prevent frost from forming and damaging vegetables and other plants. The covers should be opened or removed during the daylight hours then pulled shut before the temperature drops below freezing.
Garden With Frost
Vegetables and annuals will also suffer from frost or freeze in early spring. Protecting spring bulbs or perennials are not issues you need to worry about. Perennials, tulips, or other plants with bulbs are able to withstand temperatures in the upper 20s and lower 30s. Some of these plants will be fine in cold temperatures including catmint and columbine. Unfortunately, developing buds on flowers and new foliage on fruit trees along with other trees and shrubs can be damaged by frost and freezes. This is even more likely when cold weather is followed by longer spells of warmer temperatures. Warmer temperatures can lead to the growth of flowers and fruits too soon leading to harm and impairing their appearance over the year.
Early spring can give you false hope if you plant too soon. You could experience a late frost or freeze that will harm your plants. You should hold off planting warm-weather vegetables like tomatoes, green beans, and peppers until all threats are gone. Annuals like begonias, marigolds, and petunias should wait until the threat of frost is behind you.
If your heart is set on planting vegetables, choose cool-season vegetables such as cabbage, spinach, beets, collards, kale, carrots, Brussels sprouts, radish, lettuce, chard, and onion for early spring. Cool season annuals should include pansies, sweet alyssum, and snapdragons These annuals and veggies can withstand a light frost with temperatures down to 28°F or 26°F without being damaged.
Annual plants like vegetable transplants, perennials grown in a greenhouse or indoors need to adjust to cooler temperatures before planting them outside. Hardened plants are more likely to survive an unexpected light freeze or a frost without being harmed, unlike plants that have not been hardened.
When there is a forecast for below-freezing temperatures, protect your plants by bringing them inside or covering them with blankets, using cold frames, or growing tunnels.
Plant Covered in Frost Blanket
Gardeners and farmers who live in colder climates are always on the lookout for remedies when planting their spring crops earlier in the year. Unfortunately, nothing is etched in concrete. Gardeners and farmers have spent many years caring for and growing their plants by paying attention to weather forecasts and realizing they will enjoy an abundance of great crops if they apply a little patience.
There are many new products on the market to help you protect your vegetables, flowers, and other plants but caution must play a big part. The best advice, keep an eye out for weather forecasts during early spring or late fall. Be ready to bring plants inside if an unforeseen frost or freeze hits your area, and have plant protection products at hand to ensure you will have a great growing season ahead of you.