Thursday, April 10, 2014

Are we safe from frost? What about Easter weather?

The two questions I've been hearing a lot in recent days concern frost and the advance outlook for Easter weekend.

As you well know, there are dangers in giving definitive answers in either case.  The date of the last frost is an average, with wide variations. And predicting the weather for Easter, which is 10 days away, taxes the limits of meteorology.

But let's talk about it.

The average date of the last frost in Charlotte is April 2, according to numbers I found, although I also discovered a listing that said "somewhere between April 1 and 10." By either of those averages, we are safe.

But you'll be taking a chance, as you know, by planting anything tender vegetation now.  It's a small chance, but we've had freezing temperatures as late as April 25 in recent years (31 degrees on April 25, 2005). And it doesn't take freezing temperatures at Charlotte Douglas International Airport for frost to develop. If it's in the mid 30s at the airport, there easily could be frost nearby.

Looking at the last several years, here are the last dates of chilly temperatures:

2013 ... April 20 (39 degrees)

2012 ... April 24 (39 degrees); also April 13 (34 degrees)

2011 ... May 5 (36 degrees)

2010 ... April 29 (38 degrees)

Computer models show some chilly air infiltrating the Carolinas next week after the current warm spell is broken. If skies are clear at night, we easily could see some mid and upper 30s in the region. However, there are signs that the period from Wednesday through Good Friday, the three-day period of the coolest weather, could be cloudy. That would keep overnight readings warmer than they otherwise might be.

About Easter ...

Several long-range forecasts show the same thing next week -- cloudy and rather cool temperatures from Wednesday through Saturday, the day before Easter.  Predicted highs are in the mid and upper 60s, and there could be some rain around Good Friday.

But the good news is that most of those forecasts show clearing skies and much warmer temperatures for Easter Sunday, with highs around 80 degrees.


Anonymous said...

I've lived here all my live, my Grandmother always told me to never plant your garden until you see the leaves of the pecan tree emerge,she has never been wrong

Anonymous said...

The garbage weather that has been the norm since April 2013 continues. Endless downpours. Endless flooding. Endless cold. Endless wet mess. Two days of sun, five days of flooding rain.

Bring back the years of drought, oh bring back the dry, cracked earth!!!

Anonymous said...

Its all the spraying "they" are doing in the sky. Looks like a tic tac toe board up there sometimes. That's what I believe has been fouling the weather up the last 15 years or more. Whatever "they" are doing, it can't be good for us....

Anonymous said...

Endless rain. Endless flooding. Endless garbage weather. April is over half past, temperatures 20 degrees below normal, and still running heaters. Two days of mild sun, then flooding rain. Twelve months now of garbage weather.

Anonymous said...

Yes, absolutely continuous s--- weather.

Let's have a couple years of dry, cracked-earth drought, please.