After two months of winter, we have finally had our first frost! It was a chilly 1.9°C (35.4F) at 7am this morning, which was our coldest day of the year so far. Certainly brass monkey weather!
So when I arose, I inspected the garden for frost damage, and found these lovely frosty cabbages in all their glory. Don’t they look just beautiful?
Cabbages are frost hardy plants, as are most of the Brassica family of vegetables. All of the kale and sprouting broccoli was similarly frosty, but recovered as soon as the sun hit their leaves.
Whilst inspecting this crop I found a few dead cabbage moth caterpillars that didn’t make it through the frost. I suppose that is one advantage to frost.
These purple cabbages will be delicious in coleslaw in summer salads!
As you can see the cabbage heads are forming well and beginning to harden. By the end of this month, I should be swimming in cabbages. We like it steamed, or cooked with a little bacon and garlic. If we have too much, we will probably make some sauerkraut. We are yet to try making out own, so it will be an interesting experiment in fermentation.
You can see what remains of the potatoes around the edges of this smaller cabbage.
Potatoes are not frost tolerant and die off at the first sign of a freeze. I won’t pull them out just yet, because I am hoping they may come back if we manage to avoid another frost until the end of winter. I know there are spuds under the plants because the soil is swelling around the base of the stem.
I have read somewhere that quite a few plants taste better after a frost, as it helps the vegetable develop sugars. Looking forward to harvesting this lot in a month or so. Thankfully, they are all developing at different speeds because I planted three varieties. This way we should avoid a glut, and have to find somewhere to store them all!
So who else got a heavy frost this weekend? Did you lose any vegetables that you were trying to nurse through the winter?