KUSA - As night temperatures plummet, protect tender vegetation from frost. This includes container plants and vegetables. You'll buy more time to enjoy and harvest them.
Cotton sheets and tablecloths work perfectly well to cover plants and protect them from a few degrees of frost. Spun polypropylene covers are also ideal for protection and don't weigh down the plants under snow or rain. Use bamboo stakes beneath sheets to help prevent them crushing plants if they get wet and heavy.
Covering plants buys time in deciding which plants you may wish to save inside over winter. All you need is a sunny window to house bananas, geraniums, dwarf citrus, angel trumpets, begonia, flowering maple, spike dracaena, asparagus ferns, coleus and many other tropical plants. Cannas and dahlias should be allowed to frost and go dormant before storing them in a cool, dark place for winter.
Some cold hardy annual plants need little protection. These include pansies, kale, cabbage, snapdragons, dianthus and lettuce. Most perennials will also take a light frost with no ill effects.
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