Just a few hours ago I learned that at a certain point in September, Environment Canada stops issuing frost advisories for Alberta. Incidentally, that happens to be today, despite the fact that Edmonton has yet to experience a hard frost. Apparently we’re to fend for ourselves now.
To be fair, the system is fairly straightforward. If the predicted nighttime low is between 5 – 1 then there is a “risk of frost” while if it hits 0, in Edmonton, we get “patchy frost.” Below 0, it is simply “low -2 with frost.”
So tonight I am crossing my fingers that it is indeed a night of patchy frost and not a hard freeze. I have a few events I need flowers for this weekend and the rest of the week is supposed to be beautiful. We’ve already survived one night of similar conditions, surely tomorrow will see us safe again? Ah, fall in Edmonton. Always toying with my emotions and cluttering my counters with flowers clipped haphazardly in the dark on particularly chilly nights.
The frost has been good for my creativity though. Since I can’t rely on garden flowers for events at this point in the year, there’s no real reason to save them. Instead I am trying to cram in as many creative projects as possible, and any orders that go out get extra garden flowers. It’s a bit of a rush, but I’m happy to keep it up until October, when I have to settle into serious garden maintenance routines.
Yes, October will be a month of digging. There are trees and bulbs on order for a garden I’m helping to design, set to arrive the first week of October. Plus my own bulb orders and baby perennials that were too small to go into the garden in the spring waiting to be planted, ideally sooner rather than later. The annuals will need to be composted, the dahlia tubers harvested, and the perennial beds mulched.
I suppose the date of our first hard frost isn't really the end of my season. Gardening only ends when the ground freezes solid.