Frost and Freezes

Meteorologist Josh Fitzpatrick answers viewer questions about frost and freezes.

Well here we are entering late October.  A time for brilliant colors on the trees (not so much this year), Halloween, longer nights, cooler days and of course frost. 

Melanie from my hometown of Gallipolis, OH asks: "What's the difference between a frost advisory and a freeze warning?" 

A frost advisory is issued by the National Weather Service when frost is possible.  Low temperatures are expected to fall into the low to mid 30s during a frost advisory.  

Freeze warnings are also issued by the National Weather Service.  Freeze warnings are issued when the temperature is expected to fall below freezing for an extended period of time during the growing season.  As you can imagine, frost and freezes are more serious in the spring as the growing season gets underway.  In the fall, after the first killing frost or freeze you will not see another frost or freeze advisory or warning since the growing season's over.  As always if you have plants you want  to protect cover them with plastic or newspaper.  But be sure to uncover them once the sun rises.  If they're in pots, just simply bring them inside.

My next question comes from Sarah in Ashland, KY.  She asks: "When is the average first frost?"

Well it varies from year to year but on average, those of you from Athens, Parkersburg, Elkins, Summersville and Beckley, the average first frost is in late September.  But not always!  Sometimes you have to wait until October like most areas.  For most of you here in the Ohio, Big Sandy and Kanawha Valleys, typically we have our first frost in early to mid October and many of you have already had frost this fall.

One other question just in is from Regina, she asks about about allergies and the cooler weather.  Since we've had a frost, seasonal allergies from plants will certainly be less now.  Ragweed season's over.

Keep those great questions coming in!  If you have a weather related question that you would like me to answer either e-mail me directly at or post it in the comment section below.

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