Thursday, January 19, 2012

Signs of spring

This shouldn't be a topic for reflection in mid-January, but we're definitely seeing signs of (premature) spring in the Piedmont. 

All of the Asian species that normally flower in winter are in full swing and the early-spring flowering shrubs and trees  (Japanese apricot, Prunus mume, for example) are also in full flower, almost a month ahead of 'normal.'

More interestingly, native birds are following the cues, and behaving more like it's February rather than January.  Vocalization, flocking behavior, courtship, and probably all sorts of things that I haven't noticed seem much more evident than usual in January.   The last two winters were quite severe for the SE and spring came late, providing a (maybe significant) contrast.

A radio show colleague remarked that the Farmer's Almanac predicts a cold February.

National Weather Service Climate Predication Center map
I haven't looked at that (nor do I know how the Almanac comes up with their predictions), but we'll see. 

I like to periodically look at the National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center's outlook maps for drought.  I think that their temperature outlook might be interesting as well.  Hmm, they're suggesting above normal temperatures for February (check out the graphic above).


  1. We are finally getting seasonable weather here in Massachusetts. Fresh snow this morning. Beautiful.

  2. Here on the Front Range of Colorado, we're definitely having unseasonably warm weather... interspersed with the odd plunge into single digits!

  3. Persistant drought conditions isn't very encouraging. Hope they are wrong.


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