So I am not exaggerating when I say that this spring has been the coldest on record and the absolute worst that I have ever endured. It has been absolutely dreadful here, even by UK standards.
The whole of the UK and most of Europe has been affected by unseasonably low temperatures for about 6-7 weeks now, since early April. The whole of 2021 has been pretty bad for here and the rest of Europe with below average temperatures and snow/freeze events in both January and February. Although March was okay and marginally above average, temperature-wise, both April and May have turned out to be the coldest spring months on record for the UK and most of Europe. I have spoke to people in their 80's who say that this spring is the worst they have EVER seen.
April was categorically the coldest April on record ever, given that multiple records have been broken in England, Scotland, Wales and wider UK.
I have never, ever seen snow in April before this year. This is what my Queens looked like when I awoke one morning in mid-April this year... just unbelievable... in April...
Here is the temperature anomalies across Europe for April...
Apart from the Iberian peninsula (Spain & Portugal) and the far northeast Baltic corners of the continent, the whole of Europe has been affected this spring...
You can see the massive blue blob over Europe...
April was also a very, very dry month with record breaking sunshine levels, hence all the overnight frosts under clear skies. It was just dry, sunny and cold...
While most of Europe has shivered through its coldest spring on record, the Middle East and north Africa has been experiencing the exact opposite with record high temperatures. Consequently the Mediterranean islands in the southeast of Europe, closest to the Middle East and north Africa, have experienced record breaking temperatures. Crete in the far south of Europe saw a low of 30C overnight in April...
When you look at April alone, it doesn't seem too bad given that we are outside of winter, meaning no extreme lows, and April is just one month. However the cold snap is continuing well into May as well now with temperatures consistently running about 3C below average across Europe for about 6-7 weeks now.
Here you can see the temperature anomaly for May so far in the UK...
It was also the coldest May Bank Holiday on record for the UK...
Scotland even had snow, IN MAY!!!
There have even been multiple tornadoes this month as well...
While April was the driest on record, as well as the coldest, May is currently on course to be both the wettest and coldest. We have replaced the sunshine and cool weather of April, with the rain and cool weather of May. We have had constant drizzle, thunder and spells of heavy rain and wind over the past 10 days. It was absolutely vile out today. A mild 14C but just wet and miserable. Shite considering we are 2 weeks outside of summer.
Monday's figures were absolutely abysmal for mid May...
This is the first time on record that we have not gone over 20C during the first two weeks of May. In fact I haven't gone above 20C since the last day of March, when it reached 27C here. As it stands right now, March 30th has been my hottest day this year, which is a testament to how crap this spring has really been.
On top of that it appears another storm is arriving later this week as well. The last thing we need is more rain and wind. We need some frickin heat!!!
The temperatures look absolutely appalling for London this week, in mid-May! Highs of 14C / 57F from Thursday to Monday with another storm in between. However there are signs that it will bet warming up next week with temperatures trending closer to normal, but still no proper warmth at all. I have never seen anything like this in May. It sums up a crap spring in general and a crap 2021, weather-wise!
What is even more unbelievable is that parts of Russia and Siberia are running as much as 25C (50F) above average for the time of year!
I have to give spring 2021 a rating of 1 out of 10, it has genuinely been that bad! I'm praying for a record breaking hot summer.
Chambeyronia macrocarpa potted
I did a similar post in spring 2017 but wanted to do so again as I was able to take some better pictures of what flowers around here during this time. Especially after living in Orlando and seeing more northern plants struggle and hardly bloom (such as redbuds and Bradford pears), I really appreciate those species that are near the bottom of their southernmost range and yet bloom and grow dependably here. This will mostly highlight plants in my town in Northwest FL, along with a few photos mixed in from Tallahassee.
(Photos on this first post were all taken Jan 30th) Some of the first to bloom were Winter Honeysuckle (Lonicera fragrantissima) (taken at Maclay Gardens in Tallahassee). Nice little shrub that seems to be underutilized. Flowers are very pleasantly fragrant.
Camellias (although technically winter to spring flowering), still provided a blooming presence in the landscape. (Maclay Gardens)
Taiwan Flowering Cherry (Prunus campanulata) already starting to open flowers on January 30th. From my observations and research, this may be the best deciduous flowering cherry tree for North to North-Central FL. Another underutilized tree with great potential for more widespread landscape use. Quite some good sized trees at Maclay Gardens with some that may have volunteered and partially naturalized.
Just wondering what part of the country you are in and when you plan or already have taken off your winter protection for the year. I’m in MA and it looks like next week will be upper 40-55f for highs and lower 30f for lows. Hopefully uncovering needle and sabal minor. Probably st. Patty’s for windmill. I plan on uploading photos when I do.
I uncovered my Needle about 6 weeks ago. When I did it was looking nice and green. Since then it has been browning from the tips back. Is this a delayed winter frost reaction or fungus? Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
*First photo March 15 second and third today*