|Harvest from yesterday-peppers, tomatoes, eggplant|
Sunday, November 2, 2014
Well, we had our first hard frost this week in our Zone 6 garden. The temperature got down to 27 degrees F. It was cold enough to bite the tomatoes, eggplant, dahlias, and pepper plants.
I could have used a fabric cover to protect these cold sensitive veggies and they would have been fine for this temperature.
There was not enough damage to the tomatoes, eggplant or pepper plants to halt the fruit production. The next 10 days do not show any temperatures down to freezing so I will leave them growing. The next time the forecast has the temperatures going into the 20’s, I will harvest all the peppers, tomatoes, and eggplant fruits and call it a season for these summer veggies.
You could bring the pepper plants indoors and they will continue fruiting for weeks and put them back out in the spring to get a head start on summer. I get enough hot peppers off each of the plants to freeze for the winter and spring that I don’t do this. If I had a pepper, eggplant or tomato plant that was just superb, I would consider bringing it inside for the winter. All are tender perennials.
You could also put the potted tomatoes, eggplant and peppers in a greenhouse and lengthen the season for at least another 4 weeks.
The cold season crops like lettuce, cabbage, kale, broccoli, cultivated dandelions, spinach, onions, mustard, sorrel are very happy. The celery is still going strong. It doesn’t seem to be affected by heat or cold. We harvest from it year round.
The basil and stevia turned black with the first frost. They are a very cold sensitive. The rest of the herbs are doing very well-thyme, oregano, chives, dill, rosemary, sage, bay, parsley, mint, tarragon.
Don't forget your local Farmers Market if you want local and freshest produce in season. Many are open all winter long!