I know "It's not nice to fool Mother Nature," but really--who's fooling whom? Haven't you read the The Old Farmer's Almanac, which says that April 17 is the last frost date for the Springfield, Illinois area and April 22 for the Chicago, Illinois area? Please--give our poor little peas and beans and other early spring crops a break!
Early this morning, my Forecastfox widget alerted me with a big, ugly red stop sign that we had a severe weather alert for Decatur, Illinois. According to Accuweather.com, a
...FREEZE WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 1 AM TO 8 AM CDT TUESDAY...
HIGH PRESSURE FROM CANADA WILL MOVE INTO WESTERN ILLINOIS BY TUESDAY MORNING...WHICH WILL PRODUCE A DECREASE IN CLOUD COVER AND WINDS OVER CENTRAL ILLINOIS. THESE CONDITIONS WILL BE FAVORABLE FOR TEMPERATURES AT OR BELOW THE FREEZING MARK AFTER MIDNIGHT TONIGHT. RECORD LOW TEMPERATURES FOR TUESDAY MORNING WILL ALSO BE POSSIBLE.
A FREEZE WARNING MEANS SUB-FREEZING TEMPERATURES ARE IMMINENT OR HIGHLY LIKELY. THESE CONDITIONS COULD KILL SENSITIVE VEGETATION WHICH SHOULD BE COVERED OR BROUGHT INSIDE.
Argh! I have been so good at getting seedlings started, getting plants in the ground, taking care of them, and now this! A gardener's nightmare.
I dug through my old fabric and old sheets and scrounged as many scraps and old linens as possible to cover the beans and peas. I draped them over the fences to try to keep out the worst of the weather, but we're also supposed to have freezing rain, so I'm not sure how effective they'll be. I may have to start all over. I also covered up the few tulips I had sprouting in a nearby mess of branches and leaves.
C'mon, Mother Nature, give a poor eco-friendly girl a break! Bring on Spring!