Last Saturday morning, I went right outside (before coffee, even!) to see what Jack Frost had left me, and what he'd taken out. It was so early, the moon was still up.
The Old Blush rose bush was covered with long, icy splinters of frost.
Finer frost covered the Bright Lights cosmos, like a dusting of sugar.
The zinnias had been on their way out; the frost merely sealed the deal.
Frosty black raspberry plant...
...frosty mutabilis rosebuds...
...and slushy bird bath.
I rather liked the look of frost outlining every detail of this Red Carpet sedum.
The late summer and early fall veggies bit the frosty dust. Here's a green bean, frozen on the vine, despite being covered with floating row cover that promised 6 to 8 degrees of frost protection. (Clarence Birdseye would be proud.)
The winter vegetables, like the bok choy and collards here, did very well in their snug, covered beds; their companion plants, the marigolds...um, not so much.
In the same covered bed, the zucchini turned to mush: blossoms, fruit and all.
In the next bed over, tiny cold-weather veggie seedlings were no worse for wear, like this radish. The lettuce, spinach, turnip, carrot and beet seedlings did fine too, as did the strawberries and bunching onions (covered, of course).
The nasturtiums (not pictured) suffered the same fate as the marigolds: mush city.
The roses couldn't be covered (too many, too big), but they survived the freeze, as did this little crab spider. She was moving awfully slowly, though.She's been living on this rose bush for about two weeks now. Unfortunately, her immediate residence is falling apart, petal by petal.
Luckily, once the frost melted, the rose buds seemed just fine. Miss Crab Spider will have plenty of new apartments to choose from.
Alas, the butterflies have lost their favorite flower. I pulled these sad stalks up on Sunday afternoon, along with the zinnias and warm weather veggies.
The potted plants enjoyed a balmy evening indoors, like this spiderwort, a passalong plant (from Jenny at Rock Rose, if I recall correctly).
I just love its tiny white flowers! They're such a bright white, that they're difficult to photograph without 'blowing them out'.
Other Austin bloggers have mentioned an odd phenomenon after the frost melted; many trees shed all their leaves in a matter of hours after the sun rose. In our neighborhood, it was the hackberries. I tried to capture the rate of the drop in this short eight-second video.
According to Colorado State University extension agent Carol O'Meara, this is a normal phenomenon for many trees. Read more about it on her blog, Gardening After Five.
Dead: basil, zucchini, green beans, cucumbers, nasturtiums, marigolds
Died back/gone dormant: salvias, lantana, Turk's cap, passion flower, milkweed, bougainvillea, purple fountain grass, blue daze, rock penstemon, hibiscus, clock vine, Philippine violet. (Those last 4 look the worst. They may be beyond dormant. The last 2 were recent purchases)
Damage to new growth/tips: aloe, chard, bulbine, flame acanthus
Unaffected: roses, rosemary, cruciferous vegetables, root vegetable seedlings, bulbs, lettuce and spinach seedlings, columbine, sedums, cool weather herbs
How'd your garden fare, Austin bloggers?