Frost Free Dates

April 14, 2006

The following comment from Melissa was made to a post discussing the importance of choosing the correct time to plant vegetables inquired into the best way to determine frost free dates: “How do I find out when the frost/freeze danger is over for my area?”

Many gardeners are curious about their last spring and first fall frost dates in order to determine the window for growing frost sensitive plants, and to determine the length of their growing season. They also want to make sure that they don’t plant frost tender plants like tomatoes and peppers until all danger of frost has passed.

Of course the frost free dates vary widely depending on your growing region and even the specific conditions surrounding your landscape and the orientation of your garden.

For example if your garden is situated on a southern facing slope or close to a large body of water you may benefit from natural frost protection that others in your growing region don’t enjoy and be able to safely plant warm weather crops earlier without fear of damage.

The web site at the following link offers a list of frost free dates for selected cities throughout the United States: USA Frost Free Schedule. If your city isn’t listed use the closest location and add or subtract days depending on whether you are further north or south.

Another good reference for obtaining frost free dates in your local area is to contact your Cooperative Extension Service, they usually can provide you with the average date of the last spring frost date for your area.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Lisa July 24, 2006 at 10:18 am

How’bout us up north? I have been searching for some indicator to give us frost dates but all I seem to get is information about major cities. Believe it or not, we got a frost this year on the 24th of June.I am glad I covered my plants but I imagine alot of people lost their plants. I would love to be able to have some handle on frostdates. Even the “Farmer’s Almanac” is useless if you don’t live close to a city indicated on their list. Where can we go to get information on our specific area, there must be a website out there? I live in Canada.

Erin April 10, 2009 at 6:16 pm

Thank you, this is great information.

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