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Frost and Rain

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Frost and Rain

Post  Kathy Gizzi on 3/21/2016, 2:01 pm

So, after very carefully researching the weather for the next several weeks, I went ahead and transplanted my zucchini, squash and cucumbers to my outside boxes.  It was about 85 degrees out the day I did it (Saturday).  They had reached about 8 inches, so keeping them in the peat pots was really getting tough.

Now, the dilemma.  ALL day Sunday, we had VERY cold driving rains.  While everything that was direct sowed fared very well, my transplants are looking very "limp".  On top of that, there is apparently a major frost warning for our area now.  Obviously, I will cover them tonight, but, I'm scared I've lost my transplants!

Any tips on how to make sure they survive?
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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  Scorpio Rising on 3/21/2016, 7:37 pm

Kathy, try a cloche, they have worked for me. Sunny days with warmish temps help to heat up the inside:

http://mrbrownthumb.blogspot.com/2010/04/how-to-make-your-own-garden-cloches-to.html

I used 20 oz water bottles, but you can use 2 liters for larger plants. Leave the cap off so it doesn't cook the plant during the day.
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Thank you!

Post  Kathy Gizzi on 3/22/2016, 11:42 am

So glad I covered them last night!  All of my sheets were covered in frost at 9am when I went to remove them.  I have no doubt it saved my babies!

$6 later (and A LOT of Hawaiian Punch that is now in pitchers), I have cloched all of the plants I'm concerned about.  Seems like an easy enough fix to "hopefully" keep them thriving!

Thanks again for the help!
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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  CapeCoddess on 3/22/2016, 12:52 pm

@Kathy Gizzi wrote:
$6 later (and A LOT of Hawaiian Punch that is now in pitchers), I have cloched all of the plants I'm concerned about.  Seems like an easy enough fix to "hopefully" keep them thriving!


funny post
Yeah, you've been bitten by the bug!

I took off the windows I have covering parts of my SFG this morning and they were covered with ice...on the INside! Hope my leafy lettuces made it. I'll know later today.

CC
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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  Kathy Gizzi on 3/22/2016, 2:04 pm

I think I've lost mu cucumbers!  Pretty sure my squash and zucchini will make it, but doubt my cukes are gonna recover.  Sad face.  I'll wait another week and direct plant them outside.
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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  Scorpio Rising on 3/22/2016, 8:31 pm

Weirdly, one of my 2 kales looks really bit by frost, and they are supposed to be hardy! And I had an unexpected terrible thing occur when taking cloches off this morning; much like a cookie cutter, the bottle pulling out also dislodged the entire plant, whole spinach baby up with cloche! Quickly shoved plant back in after getting it out of the bottom of the bottle....we will see Rolling Eyes pale
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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  ralitaco on 3/23/2016, 11:51 pm

A little late, but you could use the Wall-O-Water.
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Temperatures Dropping Unseansoably Low Tomorrow!

Post  brianj555 on 10/27/2017, 9:19 pm

I really need to ask for suggestions.  The large majority (30 +) of my tomatoes are covered with pantyhose, of good size, are damage free and most are within a few weeks of being ripe.  A couple are breaking now and more show signs of getting ready to.  I have about 8 healthy plants and a couple that are struggling. (Fought with corn and cucumbers for space and nutrients.  The weather for tomorrow night is showing a low of 39 degrees. 

Will this brief cold weather , Low is 41 on Sunday, then temperatures will go back to perfect tomato weather for what could easily be 6-8 more weeks, be cold enough to kill the plants and ruin the fruit that are on there now?  Based on what I’ve read, Once the tomato has been frosted, it won’t ripen and won’t be good.  
With the fact that I could very possibly have at least 5 or 6 weeks of quality weather left, I really don’t want to pull up all of the plants to hang them upside down in the garage.  I really don’t want to even have to pick the fruit unless you guys think it’s necessary, but I will if that’s the best thing to do. I could wrap Christmas lights around them but I don’t think I could cover them without the cover touching the plants. I do have a tarp that might be big enough. That would be a lot of trouble , but if needed I could go that route.
What should I do in your opinion based on all the above.  I would hate for all my hard work to go to the compost pile. Y’all always have great ideas and suggestions. Please help!
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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  Scorpio Rising on 10/27/2017, 9:34 pm

Tarps are cold and conduct coolness.  I would throw a nice sheet or blanket over them, you are just gonna get a frost, not a freeze...I think they will be fine.  

Don’t pull stuff, you have too much growing time left!
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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  sanderson on 10/28/2017, 3:47 am

I wouldn't worry too much if it will return to perfect weather. You have the burlap if you want to cover them.

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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  brianj555 on 10/28/2017, 8:47 am

According to the local weatherman. We will get “ light patchy frost”. Low is still being projected at 39.  I do have some non led Christmas lights I could string around and some old sheets, but I can’t figure out how to cover them without the sheets touching the branches/tops. I read that was bad.  I have six plants I want to cover , so I will basically have to cover a 3’ x 4’ x 6’ tall section the way they are arranged. They are too close together to cover them individually and the whole section is larger than any one cover I have .  Can the sheets just be draped over the area?  Is it ok if the burlap/old bed sheets touch the outmost leaves and branches ?  Do the covers need to go al the way and be secured to the ground? Wind is forecast to be 5-10 mph and the sky is going to be clear.
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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  BeetlesPerSqFt on 10/28/2017, 10:06 am

Plastic/tarp touching the plants during cold weather is bad - I think cloth is fine to touch the plants so long as it doesn't get wet before the cold*. You don't need to cover the plants individually, nor with a single cloth - they can overlap. I've been using multiple cloths to drape my multiple pepper plants in a planter on the porch - 1 sheet, two cotton curtains, and one blanket, covering to the top of the planter (i.e. equivalent of to the ground). The upper branch tips are dead, but I think that happened during a surprise frost, before I started covering. I don't worry about securing the sheets if the wind is forecast to be light (I'd say 10 and under is light) but you do need to make sure you have enough of each piece on the top so that the weight/friction holds it in place (so the side pieces don't pull down via gravity.)

*You may find them to be damp in the morning from melted frost, but that's different than rain followed by freezing temps.
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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  brianj555 on 10/28/2017, 4:27 pm

thanks
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Re: Frost and Rain

Post  brianj555 on 10/29/2017, 1:16 pm

Thanks again for your suggestions.  I ended up wrapping the bottom 4’ in burlap , with Christmas lights on the ground in the enclosure and covered the top with a fleece type sheet. I attached the sheet to the burlap.  It appears to have worked well, although the temp only got down to 38, it was a good trial run for the day that it drops even lower. I kind of have it set up now where it will only take me about a half hour to cover it the next time it is needed.  
Amazing how I have come to, in very quick time , strongly dislike cold weather. tongue
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Re: Frost and Rain

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