Community Living | Coupon | Police Scanner | E-News Signup | Archives | Merchant Directory | Dining Guide
Have a HOT TIP? Call 704-276-6587 Or E-mail us At LH@LincolnHerald.net
Advanced Search
Lincoln Herald | Lincolnton, NC


home : community : community September 19, 2020

5/8/2020 10:09:00 PM
Chilly Weekend

Tom Dyson, LC Extension Director
NC Cooperative Extension


With the forecast calling for frost, we asked Lincoln County Extension Director Tom Dyson for some timely advice. Here's what he told us:

Attention gardeners!  It seems hard to believe, but this late in the spring, we are talking about a frost coming!   Current weather predictions for Sunday early morning include clear skies with minimal or calm winds, and some pretty cold temperatures. That is a bad combination that can bring on freeze or frost. Sunday morning, May 10th, low temperatures are predicted to drop into the 30s, with some temperatures getting below freezing in some low lying rural areas.



1 - West Lincoln Vet Regular Ad

Because this event is coming so late in the spring, lots of gardens are already planted and vulnerable to a frost. A frost occurs when temperatures get down to 32ºF at ground level, and water starts to freeze on plant surfaces. If water within the plant cell, or between the plant cells freeze, it can cause serious plant tissue damage.

Frost this weekend is most likely to damage or kill the leaves of warm-season plants like beans, corn, cantaloupe, cucumbers, eggplant, okra, southern peas, peppers, potatoes, sweet corn, sweetpotatoes, squash, tomatoes, and watermelon. If it gets below 31 degrees, we call it a hard frost or freeze. Some cool-season crops can take that for a limited period of time. These include broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, chard, English peas, lettuce, mustard, onion, radishes, and turnips. They will likely suffer leaf damage if it gets too cold, but typically survive.

If the temperature does go below 26ºF in a hard freeze, for any extended period, it will be the cold season crops like Brussels sprouts, beets, collards, kale, parsley, and spinach that make it through. But the worst case predictions I have heard have not been anywhere near that low.

Protecting gardens from these cold temperatures can be a challenge. But it can be done. One method that can help you get your plants through is to water your garden before the expected freezing temperatures. The wet soil will have more ability to hold heat, that will be helpful in getting the plants through the night and early morning. Don’t cultivate between now and the possible frost event. Cultivation actually can encourage loss of moisture from the soil which reduces the heat holding ability of the soil.

Another important method you should use is to trap heat in with the plants by draping the plant with a frost cloth or sheet. You might need to support this cover so that it floats over the plants, depending on how delicate they are. Cover all the way to the ground. Doing this will help trap heat and keep it from escaping from the soil to the surrounding air, while at the same time preventing heat from radiating away from the leaves into the atmosphere. Otherwise, on a clear, still night, as we expect this weekend, the temperature at the plant surfaces can drop below the air temperature measured above the plant as heat radiates from the plant by infrared radiation. Covering plants with a sheet or frost cloth will greatly reduce that radiation heat loss, while it also holds in heat from the soil.

I wish all you Lincoln County gardeners well as we face this strangely late possible frost. Hopefully, the predictions will prove to be incorrect, and we will have an uneventful garden weekend. But just in case, water the garden Saturday afternoon, tuck it in under some sheets, and hang on tight as we all hope for the best!


Click Here
to have us email you
the latest news every day--
 
Sign up for this FREE service and we'll send you an email every day with links to our articles posted since the previous day's email.  That way, you won't miss the latest news, obituaries, and other items of interest.  

Visit our Facebook page at LincolnHerald.net. Follow us on Twitter (@LincolnHerald20).



1 - Alps Mtn - Taking Care Of




Article Comment Submission Form
Please feel free to submit your comments.

Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, who may edit content for appropriateness. There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it.

Note: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number is for our use only, and will not be attached to your comment.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Required
Last Name:
Required
Telephone:
Required
Email:
Required
Comment:
Required
Passcode:
Required
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.
   












HomeNewsState NewsReligionOpinionSportsObituariesExtrasCommunityClassifiedsSubmitLife

Terms and Use | Merchant Directory | Dining Guide
Site Design and Content
Copyright Lincoln Herald, LLC 2011-2019

 


Software © 1998-2020 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved