Monday, April 16, 2012

How brave are you? Moving up the planting season.

Undercover-pepper, cucumber, basil

Monday, April 16, 2012 

This unseasonably warm weather gets the summer gardening need going at a fever pitch.  
There can definitely be freezing temperatures that blow in this time of year.  So, warm season crops like tomatoes, eggplant, zucchini, cucumbers, squash, peppers, basil can melt overnight with one good frost.
I couldn’t stand it and planted all these warm weather crops!  
What can you do to protect them?  You can throw a sheet or plastic over them when the cold snap comes in.  You can buy “cloches” which are little plastic or glass bell shaped covers and place over each plant.  Or you can put a portable greenhouse over them.
I tried the plastic cloches this year.  They definitely protect the plants.  The watchout for them is that you can fry your little babies if you leave the cloche on during sunny, warmer days.  The ones I bought come with vents that I did leave open, but I had one casualty.  
Since I leave for work right before the coldest part of the day (sunrise), I have to wait until I get home from work to remove the cloche.  This time of year we get some real wide swings in temps.
Surprisingly, I had some peppers under cover and others that were not, and the uncovered peppers did just fine, even when the temperature dropped to 28 degrees.

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