Average last freeze still weeks away

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It’s been nine days since temperatures dropped below freezing in Dayton. Anyone itching to start digging should be wary. The average last freeze in Dayton is April 19.

The last freeze has happened before April 1 only three times. The last time that happened was March 31, 1969. The earliest last freeze was March 13, 1945.

Over the last 10 years the last freeze was after April 19, three times, 2013, 2015, and 2018. The earliest was April 2, 2019. The latest was April 29, 2018.

The outlook from the Climate Prediction Center does suggest average temperatures will be above normal in April.

We are currently in a warming trend right now, but another cool down is on the way next week.

According to an article by the Michigan State University Extension, Lettuce, peas, and spinach have a better chance at thriving early in the season. These are known as cool season veggies.

Spinach and lettuce require a soil temperature of at least 35 degrees for seed germination. Beets, carrots, peas, and radishes need a temperature at least 40 degrees.

Other plants such as corn, beans, melons, peppers, and tomatoes need warmer soil temperatures for seed germination. The optimal range is anywhere from 60-95 degrees.

Warm-season crops are very sensitive to late-season frosts such as Tomatoes, peppers, and melons.

You can find more information on smart gardening with the MSU Extension here.

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