Tuesday, December 21, 2010

More snow!

December certainly got off to a freezing start. After the last round of cold weather finished we had a welcome thaw, and temperatures even reached the dizzy heights of plus 6 degrees. Nice! Now we are back to the cold again, and it is here with a vengeance! A few nights ago, the temperature dropped to -12 degrees. This is colder than anything I've experienced in my gardening to date.

Yesterday morning, I woke up to find a fresh covering of snow had fallen overnight. In fact, we had almost 8 inches on the lawn!




Woodbury looked picturesque under its fresh covering. Despite the problems that the snow brings for many, it is hard not to appreciate it's beauty. Who knows what other surprises the rest of the winter may bring?

Friday, December 3, 2010

Cold enough for you?!

This satellite photo taken last night sums up the weather situation right now. The temperature dropped to -9 last night at Exeter Airport (my nearest weather station just a few miles away) and is not due to rise above freezing all day. If nothing else, it shows the typical East / West temperature split of the UK rather nicely. The extreme West coastal areas are just about the only places with no snow.


Satellite picture from University of Dundee, taken from the bbc website

-9 is desperately cold for Devon, especially in early December. For me though, it is the duration of the cold that is of most concern. A brief dip to -9 is one thing, but when combined with weeks of below zero, things get more serious for the plants. The ground has been frozen hard for well over a week now, and any pots will have been frozen right through. How this translates to plant survival remains to be seen over the coming months. Interesting times.

The forecasts are showing a slight respite this weekend with temperatures above freezing for Saturday. Lets hope we are over the worst!