Keeping Your Plants Safe from Frost Damage
Is frost damage inevitable? No.
Is it likely? Perhaps, especially if you fail to take a few steps to keep your plants safe from it.
As a gardener, frost damage prevention should be one of your key tasks over the colder months. But if an early frost caught you off guard, never fear because we’ve also got some great tips on what to do when frost damage has already occurred.
How to Keep Your Garden Safe from Frost Damage
When Jack Frost comes nipping at your garden gate this year, you can send him on his way without fear of any damage. That’s because you are going to be super prepared and ready to go by following these nifty frost damage prevention tips:
- Keep an eye on the sky – a cloud free evening is more likely going to result in a frost than not. So, if the clouds are absent, spring into action before sunset.
- Move it or lose it – place your container plants somewhere sheltered, such as next to the house or in the carport when a frost is likely.
- Lay mulch – mulch does more than keep moisture it – it also keeps the cold out, or at least tries to. Mulch helps to insulate the soil and reduce heat loss, helping plant roots continue growing.
- Cover up – frost burn is a real thing, so cover up susceptible plants with blankets or tarps at nightfall. Just remember to uncover the next morning.
- Take note of frost pockets – there is likely to be areas within your garden that are more frost prone. Watch out for these frost pockets and ensure that only frost hardy plants are present.
How to Manage Frost Damage in Your Garden
If you are too late or forgetful, and Jack Frost has already paid you a damaging visit, there are a few things you can do to minimise the consequences:
- Keep the secateurs holstered – as tempting as it may be, avoid pruning away damage foliage after a frost. Pruning encourages new growth, and frost and new growth just don’t mix.
- Forget the fertiliser – your plant may look sad and droopy, but it does not need feeding yet. Wait until warmer weather to bring out the fertiliser.
- Get watering – as strange as it may sound, keeping the soil wet under frost damaged plants can help them to recover. Just don’t go overboard and turn it into a lake.
- Tender loving care – your plant will be fragile for a while, so make sure you give it some additional protection from future frosts by remembering to keep it covered on colder nights.
As prevention is better than cure, when selecting plants such as our single trees for your garden, be sure to check if they are frost hardy or likely to get easily damaged. This way you’ll be forewarned and that is certainly the best policy.