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Northern Hemisphere Winter Season 2020/2021

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JJPalmer

Some distinct differences between the GFS, GFSv16 and the Euro.  The GFSv16 did the best job at projecting the latest winter snowfall location and amounts with the Nor'easter.  Will be interesting to see what the convective allowing models say in a few days.  Euro has been pretty good with temps this year...

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JLM

Scary wind chill forecast for Christmas Eve into Christmas Monring.
 

 

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oasis371

I am in NJ., Zone 7 and this winter is turning out to be as weird as the rest of 2020.

Winter storm track has been pretty consistent in bringing western storms into the Midwest (with the east coastal areas being warm-sectered with a potent subtropical jet shooting from the tropics into the Northeast.  Christmas eve brought overnight low temps up to the low and even mid 60's (from the Mid Atlantic region to Maine).  This was followed by an arctic front but curiously, overnight lows were just about normal for the year while Florida and other southeastern areas reached record lows (usually, when Florida temps are record-breaking, cold, it's also record-breaking cold in more northern areas).  And that arctic front was preceded by destructive winds lasting hours (with gusts to 60 plus mph).  Fortunately, I did not lose power to my greenhouse (though, I do have a generator for that occasion).  And now they are calling for yet another big storm moving into the Midwest with the East being warm-sectored before more heavy rainfall, record high temps and maybe more destructive winds. So over this awful year!

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oasis371

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oasis371

For what it's worth, this is supposed to be a La Niña winter. I know the El Niño pattern but always am confused by what if anything an La Niña winter portends.  I'm a plant enthusiast (specializing in palms, cycads, and citrus) from the from the north (not Reykjavik, but NJ, Zone 7).  All I can tell you is that it's been a weird winter. Christmas eve saw minimum overnight temps in the low to mid 60's from the Mid-Atlantic in MAINE. Then, there was a subarctic front which was preceded by sustained tropical force winds and rain.  (I sent my afternoon today taking down a Magnolia that split in half.)  The record cold temps that reported in Florida, were not not seen here (after the passage of the subarctic front, temps returned to early winter norms for the zone (low 40's/mid 20 minimums).  The next big winter storm will follow the same track into the Midwest, keeping the East Coast warm-sectored and accompanied by another windstorm and torrential rainfall.  It seems though, that the next storm will not be followed by any big chill, at least not in the North (in fact, temps look early springlike after passage of the front).  Needless to say, soil moisture is well above normal locally, so it does not take such fierce winds to topple trees.  

Happy New Year, fellow palm aficionados!

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NickJames

I’m already OVER this winter. LOL! We had a very warm fall in Central Florida, followed by an EXTREMELY COLD December and now two freezes in my backyard.

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Matthew92

Something to keep an eye on. 

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chinandega81

What happened to the above average winter they kept forecasting? No where to be seen...

23 minutes ago, Matthew92 said:

Something to keep an eye on. 

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2015148608_pv1.JPG.a47cdd13ec250c2a6e6255f5df517528.JPG

 

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Matthew92

A trend to continue watching. Far enough out that this could change somewhat but it seems a general pattern is being honed in on.  One thing I'll say is that a similar polar vortex event was slated to happen with a possible hard freeze all the way down into central FL in Jan 2019. It occurred mostly as forecast (-30 deg F in Northern Illinois for example), but the trough associated with the vortex wasn't as sharp and spared much of the deep south which had nothing other than typical winter lows.

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Edited by Matthew92

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AnTonY

@chinandega81

I was thinking the same thing. That's what I've noticed with some La Nina winters - they can have these weird, protracted cold spells, even if the overall average comes out mild. Like Feb of 2006, or Dec-Jan 2010.

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Silas_Sancona
12 minutes ago, AnTonY said:

 

  That's what I've noticed with some La Nina winters - they can have these weird, protracted cold spells, even if the overall average comes out mild. Like Feb of 2006, or Dec-Jan 2010.

Yep, .. Just like during El Nino episodes, no 2 are going to be alike/ bring about the same results each cycle..  This year, the " coolish " nature of how this La Nina has played out thus far in various areas could have to do with where the heart of it is set up.. Think " Modiki " El Nino.. Where the center of negative anomalies ( over the Equatorial Pacific ) are displaced further west, over the center of the Pacific, rather than centered further east, closer to Ecuador.

When this happens during El Nino,  the typical, " wet California/ Southern half of the country pattern " can be shifted so that both regions, perhaps one more than another,  can be drier than what would be anticipated.. No doubt it would work the same w/ La Nina under the same displaced circumstances.. 

The closer to the west coast the anomalous dry, high pressure area sits ( ..what would be considered "typical" during La Nina.. ) the more it is going to deflect or subdue the effects of cold air trying to push down from Canada/ the Arctic.. Move it further west in the Pacific, you allow more "troughiness on the right side of the High, which would allow more cool air episodes to reach further south/east over the US, even if it stays drier, overall..

Obviously the other atmospheric circulation patterns, ie: NAO, PNA, AO, QBO, MJO.. etc   are all going to figure into how the pattern over the US/ Nor. America plays out during +/- Nino events as well.

This year, it seems.. or,  is what i have heard spoken a few times,..  there has been some sort of delay in La Nina effects so far, and that they are supposed to " assert themselves", if you want to call it that,  over the coming weeks.. How true that is, i have no clue..  but, in the case of 2017-18,  we were dry, as it is now, ...but perhaps a tad milder..

No doubt this year has been dry.. just not quite as mild/warm as i'd thought/ what has been suggested so far ..at least to this point in the season.   That may be changing.. If they end up even 50% accurate, lots of 70s suggested in this months' forecast.   Next month could be warm as well.. 

We'll see of course.. Never bet the house on a long range forecast..  Regardless, certainly looks warmer than last year/ winter 2019.  Great, ..except for the lack of rain/snow.. which likely isn't going to change.  Next summer's Monsoon will likely be extremely critical here/ across the entire region.  I know i hope for it every year, but placing extra emphasis on hoping next summer.. the entire  July-September/ early October " rainy season " across the southwest, inc S. Cal.,   is a soaked washout, over a wide area.  Another nuclear hot, abysmal summer across the Southwest would be impossible to describe.

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Chester B
On 1/2/2021 at 4:03 PM, chinandega81 said:

What happened to the above average winter they kept forecasting? No where to be seen...

We're experiencing it here in the PNW, even though they forecasted colder than normal.  Rarely a day below 50F and the coldest I've recorded is 29F.  Late January is when our temps start going back up, Dec and Jan are our coldest months. Usually by Feb we're in the clear.

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nick206

As much as I hate to say it, i think the cold will arrive eventually. The last two winters started mild in the PNW, no snow and some blooming by the end of January but February and March came with a lot of snow (by seattle standards) and ruined it all. 

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Chester B
53 minutes ago, nick206 said:

As much as I hate to say it, i think the cold will arrive eventually. The last two winters started mild in the PNW, no snow and some blooming by the end of January but February and March came with a lot of snow (by seattle standards) and ruined it all. 

Not here.  We've the last real cold we had was the second week of January 2017.  We've had no real cold for 4 years, the lowest I've seen is 25F, and just a light dusting a couple of times during the night that was gone before lunch.  February and March have always been great with primarily 50's and 60's.  I check Seattle's weather daily and there is a noticeable difference between it and Portland's.  I often see you guys getting dumped on with snow and near or below freezing temps and we are still nice and mild.

Spring flowers are already making an appearance here, snowdrops and daffodils have already emerged - no flowers yet though.

Edited by Chester B
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NickJames

It was basically the coldest December in 10 years for me. 

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ruskinPalms

It has definitely felt like a much cooler winter so far. No frost (other than maybe on the rooftops once so far this year) or freeze here yet but the palms are looking more like the end of February or the beginning of March at this point. The prolonged coolness has spotted and browned things like adonidia, Dypsis cabadae and cocos. Overall they look fine and will live but a nice warm spell would be welcome. So far zero cold/cool signs on things like foxtails, royals, bottles, spindles, A. Cunninghamiana, majesties, D. lutescens, and V. arecina interestingly enough. 

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ruskinPalms

Some random yard pics to show how things are faring so far this winter. Adonidia does look like it may have had a little frost on it.

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Sabal_Louisiana

North America is set up in just such a way that is ideal for conditions that are cold in the East and warm in the West during the winter. The eastern half is basically flat from the Arctic down to the Gulf, which allows cold air to spread out across it like water on a flat table. The high Rockies form a continuous barrier from Alaska to South America, which block cold Canadian air from spreading west, while at the same time preventing mild Pacific air from spreading eastward. In fact, it even enhances the buckling or deep troughing that can occur in between weather systems, allowing cold air to dive into the East even more so than it would otherwise. Simulation models show that if the Rockies were not there, the eastern two-thirds of the US would most likely be much milder as a whole during the winter.

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AnTonY
10 hours ago, Sabal_Louisiana said:

North America is set up in just such a way that is ideal for conditions that are cold in the East and warm in the West during the winter. The eastern half is basically flat from the Arctic down to the Gulf, which allows cold air to spread out across it like water on a flat table. The high Rockies form a continuous barrier from Alaska to South America, which block cold Canadian air from spreading west, while at the same time preventing mild Pacific air from spreading eastward. In fact, it even enhances the buckling or deep troughing that can occur in between weather systems, allowing cold air to dive into the East even more so than it would otherwise. Simulation models show that if the Rockies were not there, the eastern two-thirds of the US would most likely be much milder as a whole during the winter.

Some say that North America, as a whole, is perhaps the worst designed, most inhospitable continent on the planet outside of Antarctica. A few on the City Data forum have even called it a "climate fail."

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JJPalmer

Brian Brettschneider posted a great map showing the coldest temps the official reporting stations in United States have seen this winter. 

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ruskinPalms

Just an interesting observation of the temps in my area this morning around 7:30am today. I was surprised to see my neighbor’s PWS was reading 60F. I guess the bay and gulf still have a little heat left and are moderating the temps a bit here with the strong west to northwest winds this morning. Here are a couple of maps from weather underground. I like the map from the app because of the heat map but it doesn’t show as many stations at once so I took a snap from the website at the same time. Also, how accurate are those satellite heat maps? Is that surface temperature or something else?

 

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Edited by ruskinPalms
Can’t type well
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PalmatierMeg

It seems we are getting 2-3 cold/cool fronts per week that keep warmer Caribbean winds from bringing any relief from the south. The fronts haven't brought record cold here - so far. But those continuous N/NW winds keep nights in the 40s and days scarcely reaching 60s. That onslaught of daily chilly temps is taking a toll on warmth-loving palms. The coconuts look rattier every day and my Pritchardia pacificas look like they've been blasted by a blowtorch. All this is proof that tropical palms are chill- as well as cold-sensitive. They need the relief of warm days and mild nights.

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NickJames
6 hours ago, PalmatierMeg said:

It seems we are getting 2-3 cold/cool fronts per week that keep warmer Caribbean winds from bringing any relief from the south. The fronts haven't brought record cold here - so far. But those continuous N/NW winds keep nights in the 40s and days scarcely reaching 60s. That onslaught of daily chilly temps is taking a toll on warmth-loving palms. The coconuts look rattier every day and my Pritchardia pacificas look like they've been blasted by a blowtorch. All this is proof that tropical palms are chill- as well as cold-sensitive. They need the relief of warm days and mild nights.

Here’s my cocos. The oldest fronds look horrendous. Agree with you!

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GottmitAlex

We hit 34C/93F today

Currently at 29C/84F

Seems thing will start cooling down on Monday. 

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NickJames

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JLM
2 hours ago, NickJames said:

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The difference between here and there: Your grass is still green...
Can't wait until Spring when everything turns green again lol

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ruskinPalms

Just another heat map and station map combo to document things in this area...

 

 

 

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