When to Expect the First Frost in Pennsylvania?
Fall is in full swing, as Sept. 23 marked the first day of autumn. The first frost of the season is always a big deal, especially if you’re someone who does farming or even gardening. This year, we’ve been given lots of different predictions about what kind of winter to expect, but what about the first frost? When can we expect the first frost in Pennsylvania?
During the fall months, daytime temperatures can still get pretty warm, but the temperatures definitively go down when the sun goes down. Hence, even on warmer days, areas could get frost overnight. Then, you wake up with that light dusting on the lawn, and if you’re a cold weather fan, you’re happy.
According to the Old Famer’s Almanac, “A frost date is the average date of the last light freeze in spring or the first light freeze in fall. The classification of freeze temperatures is based on their effect on plants: Light freeze: 29° to 32°F (-1.7° to 0°C)—tender plants are killed.” So, gardeners and farmers need to pay attention to frost dates to make sure their plants don’t get hurt.
It’s good to have a rough idea of when to expect that first frost. Thankfully, the Farmer’s Almanac has an online tool that allows you to look up the average first frost date in your area for this year. The tool employs data from the NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information. To use it, just go here and enter your ZIP code into the yellow search bar.
I’ve already done this for some Pennsylvania areas, to find the first frost in Pennsylvania. In Philadelphia, we’re looking at Nov. 1. So, get ready. In Pittsburgh, it’s Oct. 21, so even sooner. Also, let’s look ahead to the last spring frost. For the Keystone State, it’s the end of April. Find the online tool here.