Locally grown microgreens

First Frost Micro climates-part three

First Frost Micro climates-part three

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We did indeed have our first frost in Eastern Kansas a few nights ago.  Temperatures dropped to 29 degrees.  Would that technically be called a freeze?  I’m not sure but there is a nice explanation of the difference on this blog  I mentioned in part one of this series that I put some of my herbs up against the house.  This spot on my deck is a micro climate or a small place where the conditions are different from the surrounding area.  You can see the shinny frost on the cover of the hot tub but it doesn’t come all the way to the corner.  All kinds of things can create a micro climate: materials (like rock), foliage (that blocks the wind or the sun), direction (south vs north) and elevation.  Here is another example of a micro climate:

Example of micro climate
Example of micro climate

The photo above is cold hardy corn salad  or mache that germinated in the rocks surrounding my cold frame.  Last winter I had a few of these plants that survived the entire winter uncovered except when the plastic haphazardly overlapped the cold frame.  Temperatures got down into the single digits and we had several double digit snow falls.  The rocks retained heat from the sun and the surrounding raised beds created some shelter.  This is also a very cold hardy plant and I’ll share more about this amazing salad green in a future post.

January 19, 2013-mache' outside the cold frame
January 19, 2013-mache’ outside the cold frame

 

If you have favorite plants that struggle through the winter, take a look around your yard and see if you might be able to find or create a micro climate where your plants can spend the winter or move for good.  If you have a great example of a micro climate in your yard, I’d love to hear about it.

 

Oh, and by the way, we have caught 3 mice and the geriatric dog is none the wiser.



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