EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSFirst Frost Calls For Taking Steps To Protect Plants
from Eyewitness News Online
Reported by: Taisha Walker
Videographer: John Tincher
Web Producer: Bethany Simmons
Reported: Oct. 25, 2013 12:38 PM EDT
Updated: Oct. 25, 2013 1:13 PM EDT
Charleston , Kanawha County , West Virginia
It may read fall on the calendar, but it sure feels like winter outside. If you spent most of summer beautifying your garden, chances are you will want to save your plants from the frost expected to hit Friday night.
John Porter, West Virginia University extension agent for agriculture and natural resources in Kanawha County, said there is not much people can really do to save certain plants from frost. A majority of plants will die because it's the end of the season for those plants.
Porter suggests pulling summer annuals out of the ground now. Vegetables and mums are safe to keep outdoors, Porter said, as long as you cover them with a sheet or frost guard.
If you plan on pruning your evergreens and roses this season, Porter suggests waiting until late winter. The gardening expert said February is the best time to trim rose buds because you will get rid of the damage left behind from harsh weather.
Porter said despite what some people might think mulch is not the answer, at least not yet.
"You want to apply your mulch when it's much colder because you want to keep things cold," Porter said. "What mulch does is keeping things cold, keeps them from getting damaged in the winter from the warming up and cooling down. So you actually want to wait until much later in the season to apply your mulch."
Pansies, mums and ornamental cabbage are good with frost. In addition to those fall flowers, Porter said it's also a good time to plant garlic now. Herbs -- such as thyme, sage and oregano -- also are good to keep outdoors with the exception of basil.
If you have any indoor plants sitting outside, bring those inside as soon as possible. Porter said be sure to spray them with insecticide first so that you are not bringing bugs inside, which will likely hatch when they come in contact with heat.
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