Monday, October 30, 2017

First Frost

Woke up this morning to a light frost in the yard -- the first frost of the year for my yard. My mom texted me yesterday that a freeze warning for my area had popped up on her phone, so the frost was not a huge surprise. Also, we are at the end of October, which is a usual time for a first frost in my yard.

When I visited my mom and stepdad in Oklahoma a couple of weeks ago, I carried a lot of her tender potted plants into her sunroom, knowing that cold weather would soon be there, too. Mom used to have a lot more begonias, but now at least half of the potted plants are Bromeliads. All of hers have toothed edges like saw-blades, so the sister who would have had to carry those in was really happy that I was there to help. She had someone to share the scratches and scrapes with!
Leaves coated with a light frost in my garden. PHOTO/Amygwh

In my yard, there are no potted plants for me to carry indoors, and there are few frost-tender plants in the garden to worry about.

The leaves on the bush beans look pretty rough this morning-- darkened and wilted -- but they already had finished producing beans for the season.

Cool-season crops that had been planted with winter in mind look just fine.  Frost bowed some of the leaves early, but as the day warmed, the leaves all perked back up.

I checked the radish section of the garden closely, looking for signs that the roots are beginning to expand. All the salad radish roots are looking good and will be ready to pull over the next couple of weeks. It may be awhile before the winter radishes are big enough to pull, though. Most of them still have that thickened-stem look, instead of being round roots.

This weather also signals that the time for planting garlic and shallots is at hand. If you are not prepared, with garlic and shallots ready to plant right this second, that is ok, because the window for planting these is large.

Some years, I don't get the garlic planted until January, and the crop still comes out fine.


  1. Good suggestions! I always look forward to the first frost. It acts as my permission slip to allow the summer veggies to fade away. Bring on the greens!

    1. Hi Brian -- Fall is a great time for gardening because so much of what a gardener needs to do is follow the advice in one of my husband's beer-making books -- "Relax. Don't worry. Have a homebrew."


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