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Frosty Days


It has been particularly cold in these last few weeks. With regularly clear night skies and sunny but cold days, much of the frost hasn’t melted and just keeps on frosting more. Even the inside of the smaller greenhouses has frozen – which does worry me a little as they hold young plants and cuttings. The larger greenhouse is still above zero, but not by much. There are semi-tender plants in there such as the lemon, lemongrass, abutilon and the canariensis palms, all of which will be feeling the chill.

The Banksia Rose is also snuggled-up in bubble-wrap but it’s more of a thin blanket and the wind sometimes does whip through it and take it off. Fortunately, it’s still green at the moment, but there’s the rest of winter still to come.

I hope the temperature moves up a nudge so I don’t have to wonder how I can add heat to the larger greenhouse to keep it from freezing inside. Perhaps hanging a hot water bottle from the inside roof each day might be enough to keep the frost off the air.

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Sunil Patel

I'm Sunil Patel, this is me. I created the Garden at 13 Broom Acres and I open it to visitors. I also bake and write blog posts giving a "behind the scenes" look into what it's like to maintain such a garden.

Visit the blog, then come and visit the garden. We can have a good sit-down, a jolly chinwag and a relaxing cup of tea with a sinfully generous slice of home made cake.

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gardeninacity 12/12/2012 - 9:02 pm

Lemon, lemongrass, abutilon … sounds nice. How big is the lemon?

Sunil 13/12/2012 - 2:41 pm

The Tesco Lemon is only small, it’s about a foot high. It was started from a pip a year or two ago. We’re not expecting lemons from it, as with most of these things, it was an experiment that I haven’t got round to throwing out yet.

gardeninacity 13/12/2012 - 4:55 pm

Oh, don’t throw it out. At least wait until it gets bigger.

Sunil 15/12/2012 - 11:21 pm

Hi Jason, don’t worry, it’ll be some time before I do (and so might get pretty big). I should have started with a Meyer Lemon but wanted to see how the pip would do.

Claire 15/12/2012 - 10:51 am

It’s warmed up quite a bit around here. Do you have somewhere unheated indoors you could move things in a really cold snap? I am using a yet to be decorated room without the heating on. Not sure about the hot water bottle trick, hopefully more experienced people can advise. I don’t really have room for a greenhouse, only a small cold frame for my sweet peas.

Sunil 15/12/2012 - 11:25 pm

Hi Claire, the greenhouses should be OK (I hope). The smaller plastic ones do freeze the water on the inside but there’s no frost on the plants themselves and the larger one has been staying above zero (I think). There’s not room to bring all the plants indoors unfortunately and having a heater is a bit dangerous. Instead, I have put a large lidded pan full of boiling water in there at times when it has been particularly cold but I don’t want to be doing that too often. It seems to be managing for no, but there’s February to come yet.


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