Live Somewhere Cold? Here’s How To Effectively Grow Produce
Whether you live somewhere in the UK that’s cold every month of the year, or you’re fortunate enough to only have to deal with the coldness in the winter months, it can be difficult to grow produce.
Even in general, growing produce isn’t as simple as putting it in the ground and coming back to it by the end. There’s much care and work that needs to be done, and when you add factors such as the bitter cold weather, it gets more complicated.
Start Growing Before Winter
If you’re new to growing produce, a good rule of thumb is to start your growing before the winter season hits. Even if what you’re growing will be mainly around during the cold weather, allowing your plants to grow naturally before the cold hits, will allow them to strengthen beforehand.
Weak and younger plants are usually the ones that suffer during the cold season, not to mention that frost covered soil is extremely hard for seeds to start sprouting in.
Usually, if planting in a pot, its best to aim for around September to April, as this is when you want them to be dominant, leaving little stress for them.
Sometimes, damage is inevitable, but all you can do is your best to minimise disruption, and this mainly comes from planning in advance.
Use Frost Protective Netting
One of the best methods you have of protecting your produce from harsh winter weather, is to invest in frost netting.
Frost netting helps protect sensitive plants from damage, both internal and external. Some plants, if left to the harshness of winter, will end up with water freezing inside their stems, expanding their cells and causing irreparable damage.
Likewise, frost on the outside will stop water and nutrients from getting in effectively, as the soil can also be damaged.
If you’re looking for garden netting that will protect your produce, then check out Little Fields Farm, they offer fleeces, jackets, blankets and tunnels coated in protective thermal polypropylene. This not only does no damage to crops when placed, but also is lightweight and can help promote natural sustainable growth.
You can order your nets in a variety of different sizes and shapes, catered towards your individual garden needs.
Be Wary Of Snow
Weirdly, snow can sometimes act as an insulator for plants, keeping them warm inside, much like an igloo.
However, heavy snowfall can damage leaves and cause branches to break. So, prepare for incoming snow and know how to deal with it afterwards.
Try to shake off excess snow to help prevent them from becoming disfigured. If you own a greenhouse, remove the snow to allow sunlight to shine through.
When the snow melts, it could cause branches to be forced into different shapes, consider using string or other support measures to branches to stay correct.
If your plants do end up damaged from the snow or frost, they can still be saved. You could use fertiliser to help support natural and healthy growth. The main thing you should do is constantly check on them, especially newer plants, to see if they need to be moved.