We may be almost finished with the first month of 2014, but for many of us the cold temperatures of winter will linger well into March. With that in mind, it’s important to keep your gardens protected from frost and cold temperatures that would otherwise form ice crystals in plant cells and put a damper on your spring gardening plans. Below are a few examples of ways you can help your plants survive the cold, winter months.
Planning ahead and protecting your plants from cold weather and potential frost will increase the likelihood of your plants’ survival and save you time and headaches.
- Mulch will insulate your plants and protect them from experiencing the effects of frozen soil. Frozen soil inhibits a plant’s ability to properly absorb water. If you plan to use mulch, keep it around 2-4” deep.
- Consider the location of your plants before they are even planted. Fences or rocks can protect nearby plants from heavy winds, and plants near sidewalks can absorb extra heat.
- Cover your more delicate plants with a blanket or tarp if the weather forecast calls for a short spell of cold days. This should only be done at night so the plants can get as much Sun and air exposure as possible.
- Think about using raised beds for your plants. Not only will this make covering your plants easier, but it also prevents them from collecting too much cold air as it usually congregates in areas with lower elevation.
- Pot some of your plants and bring them in from the cold. Just make sure to get them as much sunlight from windows as possible since many may not be indoor plants by nature.
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