Thursday, October 28, 2010

Hard freeze strikes late

When the first widespread freeze finally came, it froze hard. Officially it was 20 degrees F at 6:30 a.m. at DIA. Considering the average first fall frost is October 7, the 28th of the month is nothing to complain about.

Hopefully you rescued what you could from the garden before the freeze. Somebody commented to me that tomatoes they’ve harvested in the last few weeks have had little flavor. Forty degree nights are flavor killers for this warm weather vegetable. It’s a good lesson in harvesting earlier for fresh use, or using the late proceeds in soups or sauces.

The squash and pumpkins should be in by now. This Carnival acorn is kind of spooky looking for Halloween and pretty ornamental in the garden. Good flavor too.

All that remains tucked in to the side of the frozen tomatoes are the cold-hardy greens such as kale, and the root vegetables such as carrots and beets. They will be good for another month or more. The root vegetables are particularly adapted for in-ground storage late into January if they are mulched.

Photo credit: Tomato harvest, Carnival acorn, Frozen tomato and pepper plants – All Carl Wilson

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