She is just pretending to be nice right now.
A quick guide on how to protect your plants from unexpected frosts and unpredictable Spring weather.
Here you can find information on:
A warning on this evil phenomenon known as the Eisheiligen.
3 tips on how to protect your balcony plants from late frosts in Berlin.
Finally the sun and warmer days ahead!
the temperatures in Berlin are looking good over the next week- maybe even longer!
Did you plant something outside? get seduced into sowing some seeds?
These sunny days may tempt us to plant out frost sensitive balcony tomatoes and other tender plants (tender plants are plants that do not have 'Winterhart' written on the label.)
Don't be fooled.
The temperatures will go up and down a lot and dip again in mid May due to the Eisheiligen. The Eisheiligen can frost damage your plants turning their leaves black and crumpled.
She's a chillin and a killin!
It is so tempting on sunny days to forget that the nights can still be really cold- so frosty and barbaric!
and this is what happens...
Above: saggy sad leaves that may never recover.
So what is the Eisheiligen?
The Eisheiligen is a uniquely German party pooper- a series of frosty days that regularly occur during the balmy days of mid May and usually end 15th May. The effect of these frosts is to totally wipe out any plant that isn't totally boring.
Spring is unpredictable in our city- one day sunny all over you and the next day pretending it never happened. Wind and hail storms can knock out expensive plants or kill seedlings you have carefully nurtured for months indoors.
This is really sad!
However no worries- here's what to do if you already planted out your balcony Tomatoes.
3 tips on what you can do to protect your plants from the evil Eisheiligen:
Keep an eye on the forecast and in the case of bad weather protect the plants overnight by covering them with a sheet, plastic bag or frost Schutz fabric (frost Schutz: 5€ for a big bag of protective plant fleece in your local hardware store) take the covering off your plant when the danger is past.
Harden off plants before planting out- this makes them stronger. What is 'hardening off'? this is the process of acclimatising your plants to a new temperature. How to do it? for 4-5 days put your new plants outside in the day time and take them into your house at night. As a rule it is always good to harden off plants if there is a big difference between the temperature in the place you bought them in and the temperature in the place you are planting them in. Hardening off prevents that 'collapsed look' you often get after moving plants to a new home.
Know what you grow- check the label- is it Winterhart? is it tender? is it sold outdoors or under protection? what type of plant is it? this info will help you decide if it is good to plant out right away or if you need to acclimatise it to a new temperature. It will inform you if you will need to put plant fleece or some other protective covering on the plant during the colder weather of crazy hot'n'cold Berlin Spring.
So you get less of this:
Above: Sad Ginkgo
And more of this:
Above: fantastic Tomato