Well, all I can say is it’s about time! Usually we get our first freeze the third week in November, and now here it is the second week of December!
So what to do to prepare?
I’ve been out today, getting my garden, chickens and faucets ready for the next three nights which it’s going to dip way below freezing.
First, I made sure the chickens have some additional straw in their coop. No, I don’t really worry about them keeping warm unless it dips into the ‘teens. They have down and feathers and fluff up rather nicely in the cold, and do quite well. (Our comforters have down in them, remember?) I also gave them an extra ration of corn late this afternoon. The carbohydrate helps them get the body fires going and helps keep them warm.
The garden? I mulched with some old straw around the plants that may have a hard time. I’m generally of the attitude that if a plant can’t handle it, then I’m not going to worry. Like chard, that can have ice on it, wilt a bit and come back within a day or two in the thaw. But my kale, mustard, broccoli raab and peas, now that’s another story. You can see the kale all mulched up in the picture. I gave the plant feet a nice 3″ of straw on the ground. I didn’t have to water, because the rains during the last few days took care of that.
Now… the hoses and faucets. I disconnected both garden hoses. Then I covered the faucets. The one in back, that sticks straight up I covered with a 5-gallon bucket. The one in front, coming out the side of the house skirting I wrapped with bubble wrap and duct tape. That worked last winter quite well.