In some areas, there is a risk of frost which has the potential of harming your plants, especially if gardeners push the boundaries and plant tender plants too soon in the spring or leave them in too long in the autumn.
The first thing to keep an eye on is the weather forecast. Have frost cloth at the ready, so you are prepared if the temperatures decide to take a plunge.
Avoid planting out warm loving seedlings until the risk of frost has passed. There is little advantage to starting them too soon as it won’t be warm enough for them, and they may struggle.
At the end of the season, if a frost is imminent, bring tender plants indoors or into sheltered locations and harvest what you can from the vegetable patch to avoid losing the harvest.
Protect at-risk dormant perennials in the garden with a covering of mulch, leaves or compost, but remember to clear away the covering as the plants begin to grow again.
If plants in the landscape become damaged by frost, just leave them alone until the warmer weather. Pruning off the frost damage and/or feeding the plant can encourage new growth that can also be hit by frost. The damaged plant material can act as protection from further harm.
Frost isn’t all bad though. It can kill pests and diseases, putting a dent in their populations. The freezing and thawing of the moisture in the soil throughout winter can break up clumps and lumps in the soil and help achieve a loose soil with a fine tilth. Most surprisingly, over-wintering vegetables are made sweeter with a hit of frost.
Adverse weather is never welcome, however knowing what to do before, during, and after can help the garden recover and go on giving joy.