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A Gardners Guide To FROST

Discussion in 'General Outdoor Growing' started by FourTwenty, Sep 23, 2008.

  1. Sep 23, 2008 #1

    FourTwenty

    FourTwenty

    FourTwenty

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    Found this article on frost while i was surfing the net thought i would share it with all of you since its getting close to the first frost again mines usually around mid Nov.

    A Gardener's Guide to Frost

    Clear or Cloudy Sky?
    Frost (also called white or hoarfrost) occurs when air temperatures dip below 32°F and ice crystals form on leaves, injuring, and sometimes killing, tender plants. Clear, calm skies and falling afternoon temperatures are usually the perfect conditions for frost. If the temperatures are falling fast under clear, windy skies-especially when the wind is out of the northwest-it may indicate the approach of a mass of polar air and a hard freeze. A hard or killing frost is based on movements of large, cold air masses. The result is below-freezing temperatures that generally kill all but the most cold-tolerant plants.

    Cloudy Skies: you may be in luck.
    If the temperature is cool, but clouds are visible, your plants may be protected. During the day, the sun’s radiant heat warms the earth. After the sun sets, the heat radiates upward, which lowers the temperatures at or near the ground. However, if the night sky has clouds, these clouds will trap the heat and keep the warmer temperatures lower, closer to your plants, preventing a frost.

    Wind?
    Wind also influences frost. If the air is still and windless, the coldest air settles to the ground. The temperature at plant level may be freezing, even though at eye level it isn't. A gentle breeze, however, will prevent the cold air from settling and keep temperatures higher, protecting your plants. If the wind itself is below freezing, frost may be very damaging.

    Moisture?
    Humidity and moisture are good things when talking frost. When moisture condenses out of humid air, it releases enough heat to sometimes save your plants. When the air is dry, the moisture in the soil will evaporate. Evaporation requires heat, which removes warmth that could save your vegetables.

    Location, location, location.
    The location of your garden can have a tremendous influence on whether or not an early frost could wipe out your garden, but leave your neighbor’s alone. As a general rule, the temperature drops 3°F to 5°F with every 1,000-foot increase in altitude. The higher your garden the colder the average air temperature and the more likely your plants will be hit by an early freeze.

    However, lower isn’t always better. Cold air is heavier than warm air and tends to sink to the lowest areas, causing frost damage. The best location for an annual garden is on a gentle, south-facing slope that's well heated by late-afternoon sun and protected from blustery north winds. A garden surrounded by buildings or trees or one near a body of water is also less likely to become frost covered.

    Soil.
    The type of soil your garden is growing in also affects the amount of moisture it holds. Deep, loose, heavy, fertile soil releases more moisture into the surrounding air than thin, sandy, or nutrient-poor soil. The more humid the air is, the higher the dew point will be, and the less likely that frost will form on those plants. Heavily mulched plants are more likely to become frosted since the mulch prevents moisture and heat from escaping out of the soil and warming the surrounding air.

    Know your plants.
    The plant itself determines its likelihood of frost damage. Immature plants still sporting new growth into the fall are most susceptible-especially the new growth. Frost tolerance tends to be higher in plants with maroon or bronze leaves, because such leaves absorb and retain heat. Downy- or hairy-leaved plants also retain heat. Compact plants expose a smaller proportion of their leaves to cold and drying winds. By the same token, closely spaced plants protect each other.

    Frost on its way?
    If a frost is predicted, cover your plants, both to retain as much soil heat and moisture as possible and to protect them against strong winds, which can hasten drying and cooling. You can use newspapers, baskets, tarps, straw, and other materials to cover your plants. Cover the whole plant before sunset to trap any remaining heat. Be sure to anchor lightweight coverings to prevent them from blowing away.

    Keep the soil moist by watering your plants the day a frost is predicted. Commercial fruit and vegetable growers leave sprinklers on all night to cover plants with water. As the water freezes, it releases heat, protecting the plants, even though they're covered by ice. To prevent damage, the sprinklers need to run continuously as long as temperatures remain below freezing.


    COLD TEMPERATURE EFFECTS ON PLANTS AND VEGETATION

    FROST: Damage depends upon length of frost duration.

    LIGHT FREEZE: 29 degrees F to 32 degrees F / -2 degrees C to 0 degrees C. Tender plants killed with little destructive effect on other vegetation.

    MODERATE FREEZE: 25 degrees F to 28 degrees F / -4 degrees C to -2 degrees C. Wide destruction on most vegetation with heavy damage to fruit blossoms and tender semi-hardy plants.

    SEVERE FREEZE: 24 degrees F / -4 degrees C and colder. Heavy damage to most plants.
     
  2. Sep 23, 2008 #2

    zipflip

    zipflip

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    that was very informative. thanks man
     
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  3. Sep 23, 2008 #3

    Hick

    Hick

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    ..nice post 420!.. thanks :D
     
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  4. Sep 23, 2008 #4

    Puffin Afatty

    Puffin Afatty

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    I was up on the mountain sunday, there was already light frost
     
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  5. Sep 23, 2008 #5

    HippyInEngland

    HippyInEngland

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    Excellent post, the word FROST is also included in the title so very easy to find with a search :)
     
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  6. Sep 23, 2008 #6

    FruityBud

    FruityBud

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    Very nice post, thank you.
     
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  7. Sep 23, 2008 #7

    Thorn

    Thorn

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    great post - should defo go in the grow resources thing ma jiggy :D
     
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  8. Sep 25, 2008 #8
    Thanks for the great post. It's that time of the year again, snow on the peaks and frost coming. Pray for our Ladies.
     
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  9. Oct 8, 2008 #9

    zipflip

    zipflip

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    i just thought i'd bring this back up to the top beins alot of us are experiencin run in's wit the dreaded frost this time year.
     
  10. Oct 8, 2008 #10

    Hick

    Hick

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    Git "R" lit

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    ..:confused2:.. it's a "sticky".. you can't 'bring it back to the top".. :)
     
  11. Oct 8, 2008 #11

    zipflip

    zipflip

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    oh oops my bad. didnt notice. lol
     
  12. Oct 15, 2008 #12

    banjo

    banjo

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    I need to know how much do I have to fear frost? I'm going to be gone for a week and I'm wondering..... would it be better to harvest before leaving or take a chance on it freezing while I'm gone? In other words, how bad is it if it freezes and I can't get to them for a few days?
     
  13. Nov 7, 2008 #13

    malikus

    malikus

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    goood one
     
  14. Apr 3, 2009 #14
    great tutorial qld needs that info at the moment sweet bro
     
  15. May 28, 2012 #15

    Maximlis

    Maximlis

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    Thats true. It depends on temperature.
     
  16. Jun 4, 2012 #16

    smithsupport

    smithsupport

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    great post dude........
    Good keep it up posting like this....
     
  17. Dec 11, 2012 #17
    I have read a great information about gardener's guide over here, I have to say that this is the most important, helpful and very useful to which want to make the new garden. Gratitude a lot for sharing.
     
  18. Jun 19, 2013 #18

    lindseyj

    lindseyj

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    Informative post. It totally depends on temperature.
     
  19. Sep 13, 2014 #19

    bongbuster

    bongbuster

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    very informative
     

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