Snow is coming to Denver on Monday, so let's talk about how to protect your plants

Posted at 8:15 PM, Oct 05, 2017

DENVER – I’m no weather wizard (that’s Mike Nelson), but if you’ve lived in Colorado for some time now, you know there are signs announcing the coming of winter-like weather.

Such a sign would be temperatures rising to the low 70s on a pretty neat weekend afternoon in October, as its forecast to happen this Sunday, later bringing a fast-moving cold front that will drop into the state giving us temperatures in the upper 30s by Monday morning.

Did I forget to say it’s also likely to drop some measurable snow in the Denver metro area? Yeah, you read that right – the first snow of the season is happening Monday.

Cool, right? Sure. But your plants might actually hate it.

So, what can you do to protect them? Denver7 spoke with Andrea Ayers of Garden Patch nursery, who recommended the following:

Frost blankets over plastic tarps

Ayers says you should put frost blankets or even your bed sheets over your plants to protect them from getting cold-shocked.

Also: Avoid. Plastic. Tarps. At all. Times.

Ayers said using plastic tarps is detrimental to plants, as the plastic acts as a conduit to transmit the cold temperatures to the leaf of the plant that the plastic is touching.

Contain those petunias

Take any containers you can find to put over your plants – even if its mixing bowls you’re using to do so.

For smaller, fragile plants, you may want to put some sort of structure over them that is not a blanket or a sheet.

Plastic containers are the way to go, Ayers said, adding you should cover fragile plants "within an inch of their life.”

If you follow these tips, you should be good.

This could be the earliest snow since 2012

In Denver, the earliest first snow was Sept. 3, 1961; the latest first snow was Nov. 21, 1934 and the average date is Oct. 18.  Last year, the first snow was not until Nov. 17. If we do get measurable snow on Monday (at least .10") it would be the earliest since 2012, according to First Alert Weather Chief Meteorologist Mike Nelson.

By Tuesday morning, temperatures will tumble to the mid-20s in the metro area and across the Front Range and northeast plains. If you have not winterized your sprinkler system, it will be a good idea to expedite the job this weekend, Nelson said.

Warmer and drier weather will quickly return by the middle of next week with nighttime lows back in the upper 30s to low 40s and highs in the 60s to near 70 degrees by Wednesday and Thursday.


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