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LF-TX

Warm winter predicted for Texas Gulf Coast

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LF-TX

Just yesterday, as some may already know, NOAA provided their temperature and precipitation predictions for the 2017-2018 winter season. According to their prediction, it looks like a good chunk of the state of Texas is bound to see warmer than average temperatures during this coming winter; good news for us palm lovers! On the other side of the coin, it also looks like, unfortunately, the Texas coast will see below average precipitation. If these predictions hold up, hopefully us Texas won’t have to worry so much about severe artic blasts rearing their ugly heads on our tropical plants. While supplemental watering may be needed, there is no need for dread - we’re no strangers to that. Plus,  some of our trees like coconuts and flame trees prefer warm and dry over those sad, blue, cold and wet days! Starting the month of December through February, I will start jotting down Brownsville’s daily temperatures so that way, by the end of the winter period, I’ll be able to average them and see whether or not the city meets tropical climate status for the year and or a different USDA Zone other than 10a. I wish well to everyone’s tropical plants and palms! 

 

Images from NOAA 

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00583E79-C6B9-4D1D-B175-86234F4FEAAD.jpeg

Edited by LF-TX
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Xerarch

Awesome, let’s hope the prediction holds!

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kinzyjr

Over here, we will be having temperatures that we usually don't see until December and January come Wednesday.  Not a freeze, but still makes you wonder:

 

201710202025_weather.png

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Jason in Orlando

Western Pennsylvania has been unusually warm up until this point.  Almost forgot we're getting close to November.  Only had to bring the container ranch in for a couple of nights so far.

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Walt

 

 A forecast of a warmer than "average" winter is no guarantee that palms and tropicals will necessarily fare better overall,unfortunately -- I've learned that the hard way.

In the 20 years I've been growing palms and tropicals in south central Florida I've run the gamut of winters. All it takes is just one night of hard freezing temperatures to wreck one's tropical garden -- notwithstanding the  winter, overall, averaged "above average" in temperature.

On the other hand, I've had what may be considered a below "average" temperature winter, but without a hard freeze -- and my tropical garden wasn't wrecked (damaged by freeze).

But here's hoping the winter does run above average in temperature without any extreme low temperature that would make an above average temperature winter academic.

 

 

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Xerarch

I know what you mean Walt, one winter when I was living in AZ we had a strong El Niño winter and everyone was talking about how that meant that the winter would be warm. Well, maybe the average was warm that winter I don’t know, but we sure had the hardest freeze in all my years in AZ that winter, lots of damage around town. 

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Walt
22 hours ago, Xerarch said:

I know what you mean Walt, one winter when I was living in AZ we had a strong El Niño winter and everyone was talking about how that meant that the winter would be warm. Well, maybe the average was warm that winter I don’t know, but we sure had the hardest freeze in all my years in AZ that winter, lots of damage around town. 

I think it was the winter of 2005-2006. December and January were above average. I figured once in February I would be home free. Not! The morning of February 14th 2006 (St. Valentine's Day) there was a hard freeze with heavy frost. All my zone 10 palms were severely frost burned. Some of these palms eventually died (they were still relatively small, not with trunks). I always refer to this day as the St. Valentine's Day Massacre.

So while the entire winter averaged above average in low temperature, the one bad night negated any value of the above average winter. So when I see the winter forecasts of a warmer than average winter, I'm hopeful, but I don't hang my hat on it. I don't recall what was forecast for my area last winter, but it turned out to be the warmest winter I've experienced in the 20 years I've lived here. No freeze or frost at all.

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Bill H2DB

  Slight ramble here , but....

Dry winters will have good daytime temps , but due to lower DP's will cool off more easily at night . Overall may be a higher average

temp . but not so much on the Low Temp side , as to the High temp side .   More clear skies .     More radiational cooling . Crisp .

Wetter winters will have lower daytime temps , but less cooling at night due to higher Dp's , and more cloud over .  Clammy , damp .     Reverse of above .

As Walt said above , it only takes one night to ruin the Party .

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PalmatierMeg

My worry is that here a warmer winter goes hand in hand with a drier winter. Last Nov. we had trace rain, little more in Dec. Dec. was much warmer than normal - we were entering a severe drought. While I was away on a cruise I lost my whole Floribunda order when our sprinklers malfunctioned. Early in 2017 Cape Coral cut our irrigation schedule to 1x per week because of the drought, not nearly enough water to keep tropical palms going. We could hand water but hand watering .61 ac. crammed with palms, trees and container plants takes a lot of time. Even though we got an abundance of rain this summer, our sandy soil and relentless sun dispatch it with amazing speed. Two weeks after Irma we were gazing up at cloudless sky and pleading for a 1/2" shower.

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Walt
On 10/23/2017, 10:51:43, Bill H2DB said:

  Slight ramble here , but....

Dry winters will have good daytime temps , but due to lower DP's will cool off more easily at night . Overall may be a higher average

temp . but not so much on the Low Temp side , as to the High temp side .   More clear skies .     More radiational cooling . Crisp .

Wetter winters will have lower daytime temps , but less cooling at night due to higher Dp's , and more cloud over .  Clammy , damp .     Reverse of above .

As Walt said above , it only takes one night to ruin the Party .

And you are correct about those dew points with respect to radiational cooling -- once sun goes down air temperature plummets much faster when dry (low humidity).

That's exactly what happened last night/early this morning, with that high pressure system sitting over us. Lots of radiational cooling last night. 49 degrees at my place and 57 degrees up in town (less than two road miles away(but at much higher elevation than my place). It's always warmer up in town due to warm air rising and cold air draining down to my place.

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Walt
On 10/23/2017, 11:22:43, PalmatierMeg said:

My worry is that here a warmer winter goes hand in hand with a drier winter. Last Nov. we had trace rain, little more in Dec. Dec. was much warmer than normal - we were entering a severe drought. While I was away on a cruise I lost my whole Floribunda order when our sprinklers malfunctioned. Early in 2017 Cape Coral cut our irrigation schedule to 1x per week because of the drought, not nearly enough water to keep tropical palms going. We could hand water but hand watering .61 ac. crammed with palms, trees and container plants takes a lot of time. Even though we got an abundance of rain this summer, our sandy soil and relentless sun dispatch it with amazing speed. Two weeks after Irma we were gazing up at cloudless sky and pleading for a 1/2" shower.

Frankly, I'm not even concerned about this winter. My property got wiped out by Irma. I have 5.60 acres -- and it was ravaged! I've been cleaning up debris 4-5 hours a day since Irma, and I have months left to go. The only thing I'm protecting this winter is my potted palms (to replace some palms that were killed) and my 13 year old (planted) coconut palm.

As far as last winter, I believe it must of set a record for warmth. In my 20 years here last winter was the warmest by far. I would relish another winter like that one for this winter.

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TexasColdHardyPalms

Forcast of 94 degrees in the Dallas area tomorrow which would break the daily record high followed by 5 days of 86-90 degrees. Already a repeat of last year minus the heavy frost and low 30's last saturday. 

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Walt

So much for that prediction -- and winter has barely started!

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mdsonofthesouth

haha they were WAY off. Hell the bay is forming ice in remote locations. Never in my life have I seen ice on that water even though apparently there was some in 94.

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PalmTreeDude

Like @Walt and @mdsonofthesouth said, so much for the prediction! It is freezing here! This morning it was 9 degrees! 

Edited by PalmTreeDude

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mdsonofthesouth

Yeah 9F was our low too...

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Walt
28 minutes ago, mdsonofthesouth said:

haha they were WAY off. Hell the bay is forming ice in remote locations. Never in my life have I seen ice on that water even though apparently there was some in 94.

I've seen the bay frozen before, not in person, just newspaper photos and TV news video. It froze over big time in the winter of 1976-77 when I was living in Prince George's County, Maryland.

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mdsonofthesouth
4 minutes ago, Walt said:

I've seen the bay frozen before, not in person, just newspaper photos and TV news video. It froze over big time in the winter of 1976-77 when I was living in Prince George's County, Maryland.

 

 

Yeah I wasnt alive for that one, but before the other day thats the only freeze I have known of for the bay. Apparently it may have done so in 94 too, but I dont remember it despite spending alot of time on the bay. Oh and I am from prince georges county btw, but really consider myself a howard county boy lol.

Edited by mdsonofthesouth

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Walt
1 hour ago, mdsonofthesouth said:

 

 

Yeah I wasnt alive for that one, but before the other day thats the only freeze I have known of for the bay. Apparently it may have done so in 94 too, but I dont remember it despite spending alot of time on the bay. Oh and I am from prince georges county btw, but really consider myself a howard county boy lol.

I lived in Howard County (Ellicott City) for 12 years before moving permanently to Florida in 1997. Just before I left, some guy on my street planted a trunked coconut palm (with a few coconuts on it) in his front yard. I think he was in the plant nursery business.

I don't miss Maryland at all, except for blue crabs steamed in Old Bay seasoning. Other than that, Maryland is all yours.

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LF-TX
6 hours ago, Walt said:

So much for that prediction -- and winter has barely started!

Yes! I’m quite disappointed. 

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mdsonofthesouth
4 hours ago, Walt said:

I lived in Howard County (Ellicott City) for 12 years before moving permanently to Florida in 1997. Just before I left, some guy on my street planted a trunked coconut palm (with a few coconuts on it) in his front yard. I think he was in the plant nursery business.

I don't miss Maryland at all, except for blue crabs steamed in Old Bay seasoning. Other than that, Maryland is all yours.

 

Our feelings are mutual. My family has been in the DMV since Jamestown basically and in the mid to late 1800s some moved to howard county and I regret their decision. Other than our BBQ (thats good in alot of other places too) and blue crabs/shrimp and old bay (can get this elsewhere too!) I HATE this place! I live out in Mount airy and the folks are good rural people and kind and nice, but the weather and having to deal with the eastern piedmont transplants KILLS ME! 

I will be moving to Florida with or without the wife when the kids are grown and self reliant. She can be my pen pal or move on lol. 

 

Oh and a coconut??? Yeah about as silly as Seacrets in OC and the rest of that God forsaken place! Always planting the 9a+ palms and replanting new ones when they die. More money than sense if you ask me as there are plenty of plams that will easily work there and look AMAZING and survive 99% of their weather! I have seen a few Queens live in OC to the spring and summer, but the next winter mostly finished the job. Glad to see a trachycarpus down there last weekend!

Edited by mdsonofthesouth

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kinzyjr

@mdsonofthesouth LOL, and I thought I couldn't stand cold and ice when I lived up north!  Literally the day after I graduated from college, I packed my stuff in my car.  I was talked into staying until Christmas (10 long days), but the day after Christmas, I had the key in the ignition and the car heading south. 

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mdsonofthesouth

Should have been born in Florida... its my spririt state LOL!

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Walt
22 hours ago, mdsonofthesouth said:

 

Our feelings are mutual. My family has been in the DMV since Jamestown basically and in the mid to late 1800s some moved to howard county and I regret their decision. Other than our BBQ (thats good in alot of other places too) and blue crabs/shrimp and old bay (can get this elsewhere too!) I HATE this place! I live out in Mount airy and the folks are good rural people and kind and nice, but the weather and having to deal with the eastern piedmont transplants KILLS ME! 

I will be moving to Florida with or without the wife when the kids are grown and self reliant. She can be my pen pal or move on lol. 

 

Oh and a coconut??? Yeah about as silly as Seacrets in OC and the rest of that God forsaken place! Always planting the 9a+ palms and replanting new ones when they die. More money than sense if you ask me as there are plenty of plams that will easily work there and look AMAZING and survive 99% of their weather! I have seen a few Queens live in OC to the spring and summer, but the next winter mostly finished the job. Glad to see a trachycarpus down there last weekend!

My brother in law used to live in Mt. Airy. He and his wife moved to Texas a few months ago.  My wife is from Sykesville, and we were married in Woodbine. My other brother in law lives up in Westminister. He and his wife plan on moving down to Florida near my wife and I in a few years, maybe less. They are fed up with single digit temperatures they've had this past week.

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mdsonofthesouth

Anything bellow 40f for me I typically loathe. I can handle anything this area can dish out, but i just despise the feeling. Wife is big fan of "four seasons" while I was originally going to University of miami and started wanting to move down there at a very early age. So when I move she may only come down here and there and thats fine with me as I have spent more tha  enough time here...

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Alan_Tampa
On 10/23/2017, 9:03:45, Walt said:

I think it was the winter of 2005-2006. December and January were above average. I figured once in February I would be home free. Not! The morning of February 14th 2006 (St. Valentine's Day) there was a hard freeze with heavy frost. All my zone 10 palms were severely frost burned. Some of these palms eventually died (they were still relatively small, not with trunks). I always refer to this day as the St. Valentine's Day Massacre.

So while the entire winter averaged above average in low temperature, the one bad night negated any value of the above average winter. So when I see the winter forecasts of a warmer than average winter, I'm hopeful, but I don't hang my hat on it. I don't recall what was forecast for my area last winter, but it turned out to be the warmest winter I've experienced in the 20 years I've lived here. No freeze or frost at all.

That valentines day freeze , i had little to no damage, which was weird. Somewhere on palmtalk is a picture of a car with "this sucks" etched in the ice on the windshield.  

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LF-TX

Looks like Brownsville is out of the cooold woods! Tonight looks to bottom out at the 40s. I look forward to looking at the damage done in the RGV, especially those coconuts that survived the snow of last month. I’m currently in Houston and I got word from my town of Los Fresnos that there was heavy frost yesterday :( Hopefully everything that got affected from this bounces back in the spring with the warmth and rain.

A1051900-BB92-484B-A43B-07F03E3325B9.png

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Xenon
7 minutes ago, LF-TX said:

 I got word from my town of Los Fresnos that there was heavy frost yesterday :( Hopefully everything that got affected from this bounces back in the spring with the warmth and rain.

 

Looks like Brownsville briefly dipped below freezing last night (31-32F) after avoiding a freeze the two nights before (both nights at 34F). I think most tender vegetation will be fine, but yeah I'm worried about the coconuts...way too many hours spent in the 30s and 40s. 

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LF-TX
4 minutes ago, Xenon said:

Looks like Brownsville briefly dipped below freezing last night (31-32F) after avoiding a freeze the two nights before (both nights at 34F). I think most tender vegetation will be fine, but yeah I'm worried about the coconuts...way too many hours spent in the 30s and 40s. 

Lets hope for the best!

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Walt
23 hours ago, Alan_Tampa said:

That valentines day freeze , i had little to no damage, which was weird. Somewhere on palmtalk is a picture of a car with "this sucks" etched in the ice on the windshield.  

Well, a buddy of mine that lives several 100 feet from the east shore of Lake June (in the town of Lake Placid) had a low temperature of 14 degrees warmer than at my place. I recorded 27 degrees with heavy frost that morning of February 14th.  He recorded 41 degrees with no frost. He drove over to my house a few days later (when all the freeze damage had manifested itself) and he could hardly believe it. Almost everything was torched.  I know he was correct when he told me he only recorded 41 degrees, as I verified it. My parents owned a vacant lot in Lake June Pointe (the subdivision my buddy lives in, a lakefront community) and I had placed a Halsey-Taylor hi-low mercury thermometer on the lot, as I wanted to know just how much value being in proximity of a large lake was. I went over to check and then reset the thermometer, it it also read 41 degrees.

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kinzyjr
10 hours ago, Walt said:

Well, a buddy of mine that lives several 100 feet from the east shore of Lake June (in the town of Lake Placid) had a low temperature of 14 degrees warmer than at my place. I recorded 27 degrees with heavy frost that morning of February 14th.  He recorded 41 degrees with no frost. He drove over to my house a few days later (when all the freeze damage had manifested itself) and he could hardly believe it. Almost everything was torched.  I know he was correct when he told me he only recorded 41 degrees, as I verified it. My parents owned a vacant lot in Lake June Pointe (the subdivision my buddy lives in, a lakefront community) and I had placed a Halsey-Taylor hi-low mercury thermometer on the lot, as I wanted to know just how much value being in proximity of a large lake was. I went over to check and then reset the thermometer, it it also read 41 degrees.

Microclimates... they are either a blessing or a curse!

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Walt

I suggest the NOAA predictor pursue a different job! On the other hand, he may still be correct. The second half of winter could go into a warm spell and bring the average up so that the winter of 2017-18 could still be considered a warm winter, even though most zone 10+ palms and plants were severely hurt or killed.

Personally, I would prefer to take a colder (cooler) winter with no frosts or freezes than an above normal (in temperature) winter with just one night with a hard freeze.

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Xerarch
On 10/22/2017, 10:42:21, Xerarch said:

I know what you mean Walt, one winter when I was living in AZ we had a strong El Niño winter and everyone was talking about how that meant that the winter would be warm. Well, maybe the average was warm that winter I don’t know, but we sure had the hardest freeze in all my years in AZ that winter, lots of damage around town. 

Boy if you’ll allow me to quote myself here and my previous experience with “warm winters”, I’d say next time someone tells you you’re in for a warmer than average winter, run, don’t walk to the store and buy up cold protection gear. 

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