Freezing temperatures already?! But it is just the first week of November. What is a plant lover to do for cold-sensitive plants?

If you are like me, I push the envelope on the plants I can grow in my garden. Each year I think certain plants will be just fine only to find that come March, I am basically starting over. One of my favorite cold-sensitive plants is the Star Jasmine :

Delicately frilled, star-shaped flowers, against a dark glossy green backdrop, offer a lovely floral fragrance throughout the summer.

Star Jasmine is also a vining plant that is relatively easy to manage. Can you tell why I put in the extra effort to keep it safe through the winter?! This plant can survive as long as we don’t have “The Big Freeze” which usually takes place for a week in mid-January. How can you protect it?

A technique I have found that works wonderfully and adds a sense of joy to the garden, is to wrap my Star Jasmine with holiday lights. It seems that the tiny bit of heat that the lights give off is just enough to protect my plants from dying back due to freezing. The key is to buy non-LED lights, as the LED lights are not as warm as the original lights of years past. This technique is also effective if you have built cold frames to extend the season for your vegetables. I have also used it over some sensitive ground covers.

So, get busy and get your holiday lights out early this year and you’ll be doing double-duty by making your place festive while also helping your plants overwinter.

While we are on the topic of winter plant protection, be sure your plants have a good layer of mulch over the root zone and the soils are not overly dry. This is particularly important for plants in pots because while our normal rainfall is usually enough to keep our garden soils hydrated, many times our pots dry out more quickly. Proper soil hydration is important to root protection.

Cheers to the end of a successful growing season and a fabulous winter  🙂