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Frost


by Jane Moore

I was starting to wonder if we would get a frost this October. The weather's been so meek and mild of late, with winter looking a far way off.


Frost on red cabbage leafI was starting to wonder if we would get a frost this October. The weather’s been so meek and mild of late, with winter looking a far way off. Global warming, I thought, has led to unseasonally balmy weather on the hillsides of Bath.

But now we’ve had our first real frost of the season. I woke the other day to frosted cars sparkling in the morning sun, and crisp autumn leaves that were crunchy underfoot.

Until it all thawed out that is. Before long everything looked dull, damp, blackened and mushy – especially on the allotment. Overnight my nasturtiums, courgettes, squashes and pumpkins perished. Their remains looked messy and certainly didn’t reflect my autumnal efforts at weeding and tidying. Poor Ron next door has lost his rows of cutting dahlias. They looked stunning last week and now they’re a forlorn sight of drooping foliage and faded, floppy flowers.

At least it didn’t take long to clear up, and all that sodden decomposing plant material will work wonders on the compost heap. And it’s good to finally clear the ground of summer crops so I can start making plans for next year's plot.



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Gardeners' World Web User 01/11/2008 at 16:14

Jane what you've said about the allotment looking damp and everything blackened is true. My chilli peppers in my garden all look black with drooping folliage. should I take them out?

Gardeners' World Web User 04/11/2008 at 12:55

Mine too - garden's all gone mushy :(

Gardeners' World Web User 28/11/2011 at 18:37

This is my first year as a novice vege gardener and I have 2 raised beds in my miniscule back garden in the South East. I have plenty of lettuce, rocket, white chard, spinach, mixed mustard leaves, and bulb fennel still going strong. They seem to have bounced back after the frosts of the last few nights. Should I invest in (caravan) hoops and fleece advertised in a popoular horticultural catalogue to protect my crop? Or would this be money wasted at this time of year and something to purchase in early spring? How long will salad leaves keep going for as winter approaches?