How to Keep Vegetable Plants Warm Where the Nights Are Cold


When planting a vegetable garden, care must be taken with each season. Some vegetables can be planted and grown in the cooler weather of fall and others will survive even cold winters in some parts of the country. If you plant vegetables that don't tolerate cold weather well before the nights have warmed up enough to please them, you can help to insulate them from the cold using a thick layer of mulch.

Step 1

Choose a type of mulch that will help protect your vegetable garden from cold. Bark, straw and hay are three of the best types of mulch to use for insulating your plants, and a combination will give you the best results. Other types of insulating materials include sawdust, newspaper and compost.

Step 2

Spread a layer of sawdust, newspaper or compost on the ground around your plants to create the first insulating barrier. For sawdust or compost, make the insulating layer at least two inches thick.

Step 3

Add three to four inches of straw, hay, bark or wood chips to cover your newspaper or sawdust with a thick top layer of mulch.

Things You'll Need

  • Newspaper, sawdust or compost
  • Straw, hay, wood chips or bark


  • AZ Master Garden Manual
  • Oregon State University: Growing Your Own Vegetables
Keywords: keep vegetable plants warm on cold nights, protect vegetable garden from cold, prevent frost damage on vegetable plants