Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Update on the frost

Sunday night's frost was minor enough that I didn't lose anything except a few leaves on some plants along the outside edge of the garden. But, it was a wake-up call, preparing me to take precautions for last night.

I checked the temperature at 9:00 PM, it was 49º F. I checked again at a little before midnight; it was 40º F and clear. If it had been cloudy, the temperature would have stabilized. But, because it was clear, I knew the temperature was headed toward a hard freeze. So, I turned on the garden light on the back of the garage (I installed it about 2 weeks ago for such nights), grabbed the row cover that I just got from Pine Tree Seeds two weeks before, and headed for the garden. Oh, I grabbed a bag of clothes pins, too.

I mainly covered the tomatoes and peppers. Because the tomatoes are all on hog feeder panels (4 feet high), I had to use two sections of row cover per bed (the row cover is 6 feet wide). I attached the top to the panels with clothes pins and staked the bottom in with garden staples. As I worked, my fingers got quite cold.

When I looked at it from the outside of the garden, it looked almost ghostly with the white row cover draped all over the plants. It was at varying heights, as the peppers are shorter than the tomatoes. A picturesque sight in the semi-darkness of the bug lights.

This morning, I was glad I had done all that work. It was 34º F by the house and well below that in the garden. I had covered some marigolds in the front yard. When I removed the cover from them, it was stiff with frost. I decided to leave the garden covered :)

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