Sunday, 11 April 2021

The Only Way Is Up - Isn't It?

It has been another cold week for April. In the early morning sunshine everything looks rosy.
This was taken on Sunday morning after another frosty night. The temperature mid morning was hovering around the 4°C (39°F) and the water left in the birdbath overnight was frozen solid. The forecast is for the temperature to reach around the 7°C (45°F) mark well below average as we approach the middle of the month.

Having looked back at previous cold Aprils, I think it should start to warm up now as we get into the second half of the month.
April Average Temperatures
The purple line, on the chart above, shows how the average temperature for this April has progressed to date. The blue dotted line shows the average temperatures for April 2013 which was even colder at this stage of the month but warmed up considerably in the second half but it's the coldest April I've recorded. Looking further back and using the Central England Temperature Records April 1989 finished up even colder but at this stage of the month, the average April temperature was about the same as this year.

The cold weather has meant we've put doing any jobs at the allotment on hold but that's going to have to change.
Early brassica plants

These brassica plants have been in the cold frame for a couple of weeks now and they need transplanting out or they will quickly be past their best. The forecast is for more dry, sunny weather next week with a gradual improvement in temperature as the week progresses. Hopefully, the forecast will be correct as we've potatoes, onions, shallots and broad beans, as well as the brassicas, all ready to be planted.

Wednesday, 7 April 2021

Summer Last Tuesday But Winter Returns This Tuesday

It seems hard to believe now that only a week ago we were basking in summer-like temperatures. Of course, I realised then that sort of weather wouldn’t last but I never expected a return to temperatures more suited to January.


Through Tuesday afternoon we even had a few snow showers to help with the illusion that winter had returned.

 I’ve overlaid the temperature records for last Tuesday and this Tuesday in the image below.


Temperature Records for 30 March & 06 April 2021

The average temperature for Tuesday 06 April 2021 has become the lowest April value I’ve recorded in the last 12 years. It takes over from 01-April-2013 when the average temperature for the day was 2.4°C or 36.3°F. That lowest value has now become 2.1°C or 35.8°F.

Although the forecast is for a slight improvement in the temperature as we head through the week, the weather models are suggesting a return to lower and very unseasonable temperatures by the weekend. Any serious gardening activities are on hold until there's a change in the weather.

Saturday, 3 April 2021

March 2021 - How did it turn out?

I’ve now sorted out the temperature and rainfall records for March 2010 to 2021. Despite having a very warm end to the month with some record breaking temperatures this March didn’t finish as the warmest I’ve recorded.


Warm days, above 20°C (68.0°F), are a rare occurrence in March. In the 12 years I’ve been keeping records the temperature has only reached 20°C (68.0°F) on six occasions. We managed three days in a row in late March 2012, one day in 2019 and completing the six days are the two days at the end of March this year. That’s just 6 days in 372 days of March records.


March this year finished fourth in the temperature table, a degree or so above average. We needed a dry month to help the garden and allotment recover from the winter rain and fortunately the weather obliged and March finished up drier than average and down in ninth place in the rainfall table for March.

We made a video of a walk around our plot on one of the lovely warm days at the end of the month.

Wednesday, 31 March 2021

A Record Breaker for March

It’s been an excellent spell of weather over the last three days resulting in Tuesday becoming the mildest March day I’ve recorded in the last 12 years. The temperature made it to 23.5°C (74.3°F) smashing the previous record of 21.9°C on 28th March 2012.


We made the most of the weather with an afternoon at the allotment although we tended to enjoy the conditions rather than do any serious allotmenting.


We did manage to harvest a red cabbage and some broccoli in between cups of coffee.

 Copyright: Original post from A Gardener's Weather Diary author M Garrett

Tuesday, 30 March 2021

Another mildest day

Sunday’s record for the mildest day of the year didn’t last long with Monday setting a new warmest day of the year as the temperature reached 19.7°C or 67.5°F.


What’s more with much lighter winds than Sunday it was a much pleasanter day altogether.


Temperature Records 28 - 30 March 2021

We’ll have to wait and see, but it’s possible that Tuesday might be even warmer. My record high temperature for March is 21.9°C or 71.4°F set on 28/03/2012. After Tuesday the weather is forecast to turn much cooler.

Copyright: Original post from Our Plot at Green Lane Allotments author S Garrett

Monday, 29 March 2021

Warmest Day of the Year But.....

Sunday became our warmest day of the year with the temperature reaching 17.0°C or 62.6°F in the afternoon. However, it wasn’t a very pleasant day as accompanying the mild temperature was a gale force wind which certainly took the edge of the temperature.


The forecast for the rest of the month and the Easter Holiday is very changeable with more mild temperatures forecast for early next week before it turns much colder for the Easter weekend. With the holiday weekend more than a week away there’s plenty of time for the forecast to change although at the moment the main weather models are suggesting a similar outcome.


It would be a shame now if we get a lot of wet weather as a relatively dry March has helped the allotment dry out. With the forecast as it is I’m waiting until after the Easter holidays before beginning any planting at the allotment.

Tuesday, 23 March 2021

A grisly find

There’s no doubt about it that wood pigeons are one of our most annoying pests both at the allotment and at home. They’ll devastate any brassica crops left unprotected not to mention the damage they do to fruit crops. 


One of the problems is that they don’t seem to have any natural predators. I might occasionally find the remains of a dead bird at the allotment. I’ve put that down to foxes and at home we occasionally see a sparrowhawk but that tends to prey on small birds.


However, there have been sightings at the allotment of a goshawk taking down at least two wood pigeons. Then under our plum trees I found these remains.


They look as though something has had another wood pigeon. That makes three killed in a couple of days. Perhaps a predator has arrived to help itself to the plentiful supply of wood pigeons.


On the weather front, there’s very little to report as we seem to be heading for a fairly average March. The last week has been dry and dull although when the sun has managed to put in an appearance it’s felt quite pleasant. 


The temperature for the month is around average with no unusually low or high values.  We’ve had a dryer spell of weather over the last week which is helping the allotment to dry out. Unless we get some particularly wet weather towards the end of the month rainfall will finish up below average.

Copyright: Original post from Our Plot at Green Lane Allotments author S Garrett

Wednesday, 17 March 2021

Turned out nice

After a wet start on Tuesday morning the weather cleared up and we had a lovely sunny and mild afternoon. We made the most of the weather with a visit to the allotment. It was our first visit since the gales of last week. The only damage on our plot was that our cold frame had been overturned.
There's no real damage done as there's no glass in the cold frame. We use environmesh rather than glass. However, there was some other damage on other plots. Our neighbour had lost his shed roof and one greenhouse had had its polythene covering ripped to shreds. It was the most wind damage I'd seen at the allotment for a number of years.

Tuesday afternoon though became our warmest day of the year with the temperature reaching 16.2°C (61.2°F) in the middle of the afternoon.
Temperature & Rainfall Data for 16 March 2021

The forecast for the next week is suggesting settled weather but there doesn't appear to be a repeat of  Tuesday afternoon's mild temperature.