Saturday, 2 May 2015

Frost damage

May has started where April left off, a bit on the cold side. The temperature fell just below freezing (-0.3°C 31.5°F) again early on Friday morning. I shouldn't be surprised as we often have a frost sometime in early May. The average temperature for the day was 5.9°C (42.6°F) lower than any day in April and becomes only the third day in May in 5 years with an average temperature below 6.0°C (42.8°F).

I looked through my weather records to see when the last frost dates have occurred over the last five years. From my records 2012 was the worst year providing all the last frosts of spring and earliest frosts of autumn.
Another week and we should be past any danger of below freezing temperatures and by the middle of the month free of any temperatures below 3°C too.

On the plot the frost on Friday morning has caused some damage.
The top photo shows the frost damage to our Kiwi. It suffers some frost damage almost every year. It normally goes on to recovery well and there’s no lasting damage. Of course we've never had a kiwi yet but that’s down to a pollination problem rather than the cold weather. Any strawberry flowers in bloom have had their centres blackened by the frost which is a sure sign that it won’t go on to form a strawberry.

Of course we've no idea if it’s done any damage to the tree fruits in blossom. Hopefully we’ll still get some apples, pears, gages, plums, quinces and cherries which are all in blossom or just setting tiny fruitlets.
Our tulips growing underneath the pear trees have escaped without any damage to the flowers at all. And of course the weeds have survived intact. As usual it must be the year of the dandelion yet again. 
The stems of our dandelions get shorter and shorter as the grass is strimmed until they manage to flower almost below the top of the grass to avoid having their flowers cut off by the strimmer. If only our fruit and vegetables were so adaptable!


  1. Yes, I have that dandelion pehenomenon in my lawn too. I went round and pulled off all of the flowers and buds the other day. It seemed like two days later they were all back. Lots of frosted potato tops at the allotment. At home I'm down to nine tomato plants. Hoping for warmer weather next week.

    1. Damp and cold here on Saturday. Think it might be a bit warmer next week. I've some sweet pepper seedlings that need to move from our indoor growlight into the greenhouse. Maybe next week?

  2. Beautiful blooms and much promise of great things to come. our garden is looking really good, there is something special about the garden in spring

    1. Our garden's looking good too but on the allotment there's not much to see at this time of year.


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