Frost Predicted


Those who don’t garden probably wonder about the sanity of those who do, particularly when they come upon a scene like this. At this time of year, why attempt to postpone the inevitable? Protecting tender annuals from a late frost in the spring makes sense, but at the end of the summer?


Sheets, drop cloths, old bedspreads lay in hodgepodge patches throughout my garden this evening. Even without a meteorologist’s warning, I know from experience that when the temperature is 47-48 degrees at sunset, we’ll likely get a frost.

Some gardeners may be more resigned than I am to the end of the season, but I must make some attempt to preserve summer and postpone what I do accept as a fact of life: Winter will come! However, often over the years, I’ve found that we may get a night or two of frost late in September and then have another few weeks of warmer weather into October where I can continue to enjoy the exuberant beauty of my tender annuals. So I cover, cross my fingers and pray for a warming trend.



About Eliza Waters

Gardener, writer, photographer, naturalist
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28 Responses to Frost Predicted

  1. You are a good caretaker of the children of Mother Earth!

  2. Kina says:

    Love love it! I had forgotten about those days.

  3. Oh yes I remember those sheets and blankets and drop cloths and anything else you can get your hands on, but I never thought to use them in autumn! Hope the frost is chased away by an Indian summer

  4. mk says:

    An L.A. viewer sees all those sheets & drop cloths, and sees — a crime scene! And then I read your story, and I see a mother’s blanket tenderly covering her little beloveds.

    What a sweet post, Eliza. I hope your prayers are answered.

  5. ladyfi says:

    Hope your garden keeps on giving joy and is spared the frost.

  6. Of course you have to do this! It would be too sad to be basking in warm October sun with dead annuals all around because of one frosty night. I say this because I have done exactly the same.

  7. In so many ways, this is so symbolic. it shows such care in preserving what matters to us 🙂

  8. seedbud says:

    I covered my beloveds two nights ago and dug up the coleus in the hopes I can nurse it through the winter inside. “the laying of sheets” feels like a ritual that summons Indian summer – and the time to put the whole garden to bed for the winter.

  9. I love this post! It is so… YOU. 🙂

  10. I am not ready to say goodbye to my blooms yet, but they are getting lanky and tired. 😦

  11. So happy to see your efforts paid off, Eliza 😉 I have the seeds you asked for, and plan to finally get them in the mail to you tomorrow. May you enjoy a few more glorious weeks in your garden before it is touched by frost. (mid-80s here today, and mid-70’s at the moment. We are hoping for a cooler day tomorrow) Best wishes, WG

  12. Robbie says:

    no frost here yet..we are having warm days in 70’s and nights in 50’s my favorite weather…buttttt…you know it is coming soon! I agree so worth the effort when you get that warm which can last into october!Love seeing the flowers this time of year:-)

    • Eliza Waters says:

      I think knowing the end of the season is near makes us appreciate every bloom that much more. I walked around this morning and everything looks so beautiful! The fall colors are emerging more and more each day.

  13. You remind me of what I should be doing…you have a beautiful blog, Eliza!

  14. Sharon K. says:

    Good for you for covering! I do that for spring veggies.
    What are the orange and gold flowers, Eliza?
    Your garden is just as I imagined. Lovely. 🙂

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