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Coldest spring on record for UK and most of Europe

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UK_Palms

@sipalms 2021 has been very different to previous years, with record after record being broken here, for all the wrong reasons. The past 12 hours is a testament to that. I have just recorded my highest ever 1 hour rainfall total here with 41mm, of which 37mm fell in the space of just 5 minutes. Literally a month's worth of rainfall in just 5 minutes here. A mile down the road from me they had like 1-2mm, so these were incredibly isolated downpours. Some places got nothing. Some just got thunder and lightning. I got the thunder, lightning and torrential rainfall. 

 

 

 

I have never seen rain like that before. The absolute deluge woke me up at 5am, with my room being illuminated by lightning and the sound of thunder echoing into the night. The rain was so intense that I thought my windows were going to break at any moment due to the force, and the visibility was reduced to practically 0 meters. Like a full-on tropical deluge.

Prior to that, I hadn't had any rainfall for 10 days so the ground was pretty dry and baked solid. Therefore the ground flooded and parts of my garden were almost under 10cm of standing water. It has completely retreated now, but I have never experienced that before here. Again, 2-3 minutes down the road from me they got practically nothing. The same with most of London I think.

The rain has just started to come down heavy again here this evening, while I was outside working on the garden. Got absolutely soaked trying to cut back the tomatoes. Had to change the videos to MP4 in order to upload, hence the quality.

 

The Met seem to think London may see 27C on Monday still. They're forecasting 25C here for Guildford. Not dreadful, but certainly wetter than I would like, specially given that I have started to find blight on some tomato plants. So the less rain the better. No rain works for me. But it looks like we could have a bit of rain every day next week though... :(

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Looks like we have more thunderstorms to come on Sunday too...

 

 

 

 

This has been such a weird year. Ireland has probably just experienced its biggest heatwave ever, with Northern Ireland breaking its temperature record 3 different times, in the same week. The Republic of Ireland has been having near-record breaking daytime temperatures, as well as record breaking nighttime temps and the longest run of 30C+ days ever. Pretty bizarre, given that the past 6 months has been one of the coldest periods in UK history, in terms of averages at least.

 

 

 

 

 

It's good to see Ireland getting some proper heat for a change. However, the hot spell just gone was just business as usual for us southerners down here. Apart from it being unusually humid, due to all the rain in recent months, it was just a typical summer heatwave for us here. We get several each year. In fact going by recent years, I expected higher temperatures than we got.

The past two July's have actually seen 37-38C in London towards the end of the month, so this heatwave is nothing to brag about down here. Slightly underwhelming on the temperature front. I had 6 consecutive days above 30C / 86F, which isn't a bad run I suppose, but then again we also saw 8 consecutive days above 35C / 95F back as recently as August 2020. So pretty average.

 

 

Unless this August has something up its sleeve, and September too, this will go down as a below average summer. Primarily due to that 4 week cool spell from mid June - mid July, which was one of the longest, coldest runs of summer weather on record, despite the fact that we had 'heatwaves' either side of it. Unseasonal storms as well too during those 4 weeks.

Plus my maximum temp currently stands at an unofficial 34C this year, with the Met only recording 32C at Heathrow and Kew. That just isn't good enough, based on previous years. I would say an 'official' 35C recording was the minimum requirement during this heatwave, especially given the poor year so far. We really deserved hotter temps to make up for previous months.

 

 

 

Surely August will trump that pathetic 32C. I want to see at least 35-36C on an 'official' station, even if it is just a short 2-3 day heatwave. If 32C ends up being the 'official' high this year, that will just compound what has been a truly dreadful year. I like to think mid-late August will see the hottest temps this year, given the seasonal lag, but nothing is a given, especially this year.

The long term models do not feel me with confidence either and it looks like the next 2-3 weeks may be pretty underwhelming now. Not just for the UK, but most of Europe in general. Look away now if you are from France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Poland, Norway etc. Even Portugal is going to be well below average going into August. Not what we want to see at all. Temps widely 5C below average. 

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The GFS model is pointing towards the possibility of some major heat going into mid August, but it looks like it's going to be on a knife's edge, with an abnormally cool north Atlantic ocean influencing us negatively, as has been the case most of this year. Frankly, I just can't wait for 2021 to be over so we can just go again. Next year has to be better, by the law of average. 

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Here is my smaller Queen, pushing out growth. You can see a tatty, lethargic frond at the back, which was pushed out in May. The new fronds that are pushing now look much better. I am optimistic that I will end up with 3-4 new fronds this year, including that tatty one. They should keep pushing new growth right through to November here.

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The record cold spring, followed by a turbulent, up and down summer, has definitely limited its growing potential this year. The conditions were far better in 2020 and 2019. And 2018 given that we had that record warm, dry, sunny June. So this year is just a total blip. Like off the scale bad for so many individual reasons. I have to hope that this coming winter and spring will be kind to them as well, so they can come straight out the blocks next year.

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UK_Palms

Massive thunderstorm here right now. Still 21C outside but pouring with rain as well as thunder and lightning. I've recorded another 30mm of rain over the past hour. This is certainly not a normal year here, or anywhere in western Europe. It has been appalling and the weather has been off the scale bad. Just crazy at times. 2021 is still a 3/10 at best. If that.

 

 

It looks like the floods are back in Belgium again and Germany is flooding right now as I type this. More heavy thunderstorms to come. Those guys have really suffered there with multiple floods and they also missed out on the heat that we got earlier in the week. I am done with 2021. What a shit year it has been for western Europe...

 

 

 

 

 

What the hell is going on this year!? I wonder if this has anything to do with it...?

 

 

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UK_Palms

We're getting some really heavy rain now. It is flooding here too. Nowhere near the extent of Belgium and Germany, but I Just come from the north side of Guildford and some side streets are under a foot of water, again. Torrents running down the roads and waist deep water collecting in places such as underpasses and basements. They've had about 100mm of rain over the past 36 hours in northern Surrey. Worcester Park seems to have seen been hit the worst. I've had about 70mm over the past 36 hours here in western Surrey...

 

 

 

 

Parts of London have got it bad...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is pretty bad, for London...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am seriously done with this summer and the whole of 2021 in general. What an absolutely dog shit year this has been. Probably more bad weather to come yet too, in the coming weeks and months. This is either down to a freak La Nina / El Nino pattern this year, or some kind of freak Atlantic current/jet stream disturbance, or it surely has to be related to climate change. Probably all 3 of those things, to a degree. Hopefully this is just a freak year and it will return to normal by 2022. I have never known anything like this during the first 7 months of 2021. It's just off the scale bad this year. There will probably be another storm/flood/tornado to post about tomorrow, somewhere in western Europe. 

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sipalms

Sure doesn't look very subtropical / Mediterranean at all for the next week and a bit @UK_Palms. I trust you don't get too flooded and hopefully your palms will get a bit more growing in before Autumn starts in just over 4 weeks. The interesting thing about this is while it is heavy thundery downpours, it looks as though the rainy/grey oceanic weather is more consistent rather than one-off.

Have meteorologists put this down to something in particular? For us, In previous years things like extended heat periods here in the South Pacific are directly associated with the likes of El Nino / La Nina (alongside the typical climate change trite). 

Also bear in mind that whilst El Nino / La Nina and the Southern Oscillation affect global weather, the primary effects of these trade wind phenomena are mostly felt in the Pacific Ocean and Pacific Rim countries. It typically affects the Atlantic Jet Stream and Atlantic highs to a much lesser degree, and normally through the northern autumn and winter months.

I wonder if the pattern will continue through approaching autumn and winter for the UK.

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Edited by sipalms
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Chester B

I have a question, you keep mentioning seasonal lag, is this a phenomena that occurs in the UK, or generally in your part of the world?

Over here in North America if we have a crappy cold spring it’s just that, a crappy spring. It doesn’t mean summer is pushed out or we’ll make it up. 
 

Europe is getting hammered and over her we’re having a banner year. Hottest and driest spring on record. Wall to wall sunshine. If you omit the ice storm I experienced locally in Feb and the heat dome for those few days in June it’s been gorgeous.  I guess that’s how it goes, but it does seem to me the UK has been having wacky weather for a few years now with flooding and winter storms. 

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UK_Palms

@sipalms I haven't heard any meteorologists give a specific reason, or concept, for the extreme and outright poor weather this year. I don't know what caused the abnormally cold winter, followed by the coldest, stormiest spring on record, followed by what could be the wettest, stormiest summer on record? The fact of the matter is that the first 7 months of 2021 have been CRAP! There has been so many records broken this year, for all the wrong reasons. It's actually making me angry thinking about it as I type this. This year almost feels like a lost year here. My tomatoes are still 4 weeks behind schedule. The peppers are struggling. The Theophrasti on my lawn has barely grown. The same with the Queens and washies. The list goes on.

When I mentioned La Nina and El Nino, I was essentially clutching at straws. I was just trying to come up with some kind of logic or explanation for the dreadful weather this year, since the meteorologists and scientists aren't providing any answers. Maybe they are equally as baffled as I am by it. The only other explanation that I can fathom is the north Atlantic being colder than average during the winter and spring, which has then had a knock on effect, however the north Atlantic has warmed up to average again now, so I doubt it is that. Maybe it has contributed to it though. Again I point to the record warmth in the north Pacific, or perhaps a skewed jet/gulf stream. As I said though, I am clutching at straws to explain it.

I have no idea whether the 'bad' weather pattern will continue into the autumn and winter. I mean it's bound to revert back to normal sooner or later, however the duration and extreme nature of this year's weather patterns is pretty concerning. Given how long it has lasted so far, it could continue well into 2022, or it could stabilise again in say mid-August. It's just impossible to tell right now, especially with this year being totally off the scale in almost all aspects. I personally can't see us shaking these volatile, negative weather patterns anytime soon though, unfortunately. Temperatures across Europe are going to be 5C below average going into August with more storms predicted.

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There are some indications of a mid-August heatwave, but that means we will basically have 3 weeks of crappy, wet, stormy weather and below average temperatures now, followed by a week of heatwave conditions. Similar to what happened during the 3-4 weeks prior to our recent heatwave here. That just isn't good enough. Maybe in Scotland, but not for London. 

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As mentioned previously, the recent 'heatwave' was a bit underwhelming for us in the southeast anyway. It was just standard, run of the mill summer heat for us here. We needed some proper, proper heat to make up for the abysmal year so far. Temperatures should have been higher than they were, given that we had 37-38C in late July 2019 and 2020. The 32C at Heathrow last week should have been recorded in June and we should have had 35C+ last week. But that also just sums up 2021 perfectly for what it is. A dog shit year. It's almost like we haven't fully recovered from the effects of that record cold spring. It may well have caused a real knock on effect for us. I believe we may be seeing that.

I wouldn't be shocked if our 'summer' is over already frankly. The more I think about it, the more I am going to have to mark down this summer, and this year in general. It has been really bad. I would give 2021 a rating of 2/10 as it stands. This summer is probably a 5/10 at best, maybe even a 4/10, due to the lack of proper heat, the record rainfall, floods, lower than average sunshine hours, the 3-4 week record cool stretch in mid-June to mid-July, plus just the fact that all this has followed the coldest spring on record. This summer is a 4/10. End of. And I don't even know where to begin with spring. 1/10 really. I still find it hard to look at the graphs as it gives me PTSD...

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Temperature anomaly for early April... 10C below average in places, which became a recurring theme for weeks on end...

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Honestly, 2022 can't come soon enough for me. I just want this year to be done. My tomato breeding project is a total write-off this year. Not only are my plants 4 weeks behind schedule, but blight has started spreading amongst the crop as well, for the first time in 3 years. It may totally shut down my operations, looking at the forecast. This year cannot get any worse, although I'm sure it will try to still. It's almost so bad that it's unbelievable. Especially all that flooding in London, Belgium, Germany etc. What an absolute joke of a year. 

 

5 minutes ago, Chester B said:

I have a question, you keep mentioning seasonal lag, is this a phenomena that occurs in the UK, or generally in your part of the world?

Over here in North America if we have a crappy cold spring it’s just that, a crappy spring. It doesn’t mean summer is pushed out or we’ll make it up. 
 

Europe is getting hammered and over her we’re having a banner year. Hottest and driest spring on record. Wall to wall sunshine. If you omit the ice storm I experienced locally in Feb and the heat dome for those few days in June it’s been gorgeous.  I guess that’s how it goes, but it does seem to me the UK has been having wacky weather for a few years now with flooding and winter storms. 

Well, August is almost always warmer than June, normally, so there is almost certainly a degree of seasonal lag here. Our hottest spell last year was in mid August with a week of 35C+ temps. A lot of places experience their hottest temperatures around the summer solstice, in late June and early July, especially in desert regions and in the arctic, when solar heating is at its highest. Most coastal regions with temperate or Med climates have some degree of seasonal lag and experience their hottest temperatures about 4-6 weeks after the solstice. I think that is the case for most of Europe and the west coast of America. I think it's entirely to do with the oceanic influence.

I have been theorising that this year will see a far more extreme case of seasonal lag here, due to the record cold spring, however there is no guarantee of that at all. It could all be down hill from here on, or it could warm up massively in mid-August and we could see a 2-3 week long heatwave. We have had 35C in September before and if we are ever going to break that record, you would think this year would be it, given the potential for extreme seasonal lag. Again, there is no guarantees though. I am purely speculating. Our summer may already be over now. Hopefully we get an 'Indian summer' from mid-August to late September. I doubt it though, if this year so far is anything to go by.

Western and central Europe in general has really suffered this year. Belgium and the Netherlands has probably had the worst of the worst, given the extent of their freeze in January and February, combined with the record cold spring and all these summer storms and lack of proper heat. They got worse floods than we have experienced here. I am just struggling to come up with a plausible explanation for the poor weather and volatile conditions that have prevailed in northwest Europe since January. I suspect the record temps in the north Pacific may have a link to it, although clearly they're not the direct cause. 

 

I can't really think of any other plausible explanation, apart from a freak run of bad luck, although 7 months of colder than average, stormy volatile conditions is no coincidence. Something is clearly miles off this year. That F4 tornado in the Czech Republic and the Germany and Belgium floods would be extreme in a 'normal' summer and year, which didn't also experience a record cold, stormy spring and an abnormally cold winter before that. So something is definitely off this year. It has to be the Atlantic currents, or gulf/jet stream. I can't say for sure though. It's purely me speculating. The meteorologists have to provide more answers than they currently are!

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Ryland

You've certainly been getting a more inconsistent run of weather down south - I think northwest England is a sweet spot for avoiding most of the extremes without being much colder.  The recent heatwave here had a nice run of 28C days, with one day of 29C.  Perfect for me, I don't long for any hotter, especially with overnight lows of 19C this means 25C indoors which makes sleeping difficult.  We are now back in the more normal low 20s C.  It's also been quite dry, no rain here for several weeks now.  I do feel sorry for those who have suffered damage from recent heavy rain though, most notably Germany, but also some problems in London (my company's London office has been flooded).

As for seasonal lag, isn't this a pretty standard pattern most places?  Across the northern hemisphere at least, most places' warmest month is July or August (often they are about the same) rather than June.  I know of an exception, based on climate averages, in west Texas (e.g. El Paso) where June is marginally the hottest month, no doubt there will be others.  The same is seen in the winter, where places like the UK are coldest in January, February.  The Pacific Northwest is somewhat unusual to broadly have December as the coldest month, according to long-term averages.  One area where there is some strong seasonal lag is central-southern coastal California, where some places (e.g. San Francisco, Monterey, Malibu) experience their warmest month in September or even October.

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UK_Palms

@Ryland I actually think the weather has been pretty consistent this year for us down here. Consistently shit. I am in absolute despair at this year so far. From the coldest January in 11 years, to the 72 hours below freezing in February, to the most April frosts on record and the lowest average minimum/maximum for April on record, to my coldest May temperature on record, the wettest May on record and the 2nd dullest May on record. That's without even mentioning all the summer storms too and the longest stretch of <25C days on record for summer. I have a good mind to give this year a 1/10 rating. The only saving grace was the lack of any severe low temperatures over winter i.e. nothing below -6C / -7C down here, hence why I give 2021 a generous 2/10 rating. That score could go lower in the coming weeks if the heat doesn't return.

I think being closer to the continent has definitely impacted us in regards to the January and February freezes, as well as the summer storms. You guys up north have been somewhat shielded from them, as you mentioned. I have also seen far lower nighttime temps here in winter and spring, due to the absence of any UHI. I am right out in the rural countryside. Guildford is about 3 miles from here. When I had -2C on May 1st, Guildford had at least -0.5C and I'm guessing you were like +3C or something. So there are so many factors and variables. Either way it has been a crap year though. The fact that northern England and Scotland have been drier than us in May, June and July says it all. Warmer than us as well at times. When does that ever happen? The southeast is almost always drier and warmer, especially in summer. It shows just how skewed this year actually is, especially down south. From January right through to now.

How is your washie coming along, and the Brahea Armata? My washies are not growing anywhere near as quick as I would like. They all grew twice as quickly last summer, and even last summer wasn't an ideal summer in itself. That says a lot about this summer and this year in general. The storms aside, June and July have been relatively normal temperature-wise, minus the 4 week cool stretch, but off the back of the record cold spring and poor winter it just makes this summer feel so much worse. If it was a baking hot, sunny, dry summer akin to 2018, I probably would have forgot about the spring and winter by now. Nighttime temperatures have certainly been above average for June and July, which will make the averages seem higher. This summer in general has probably been a bit below average though, then of course there are the storms and floods to factor into it. I'm shocked that you haven't had any rain for like 3 weeks, again. I guess this explains it...

 

 

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Ryland

Yes, that high pressure could explain why we've been having a pleasant, dry summer (by British standards) and you've had more rain.  There's been a light shower this afternoon which is a good thing because it's been a while since we've had anything and I've had to water the flowers a lot (haven't been good enough though, I think I've lost all the petunias).

The Washingtonia and Brahea are both looking marvellous - though the Washingtonia is a much fast grower.  So far that's produced one frond in February (lower left one in the photo) and four since the start of May.  The Brahea has only just unfurled a frond that must have taken two months to open - though it's a new acquisition for me this year, unlike the Washingtonia which is in its third summer planted, so the already slow Brahea is probably prioritising roots this year.  Still, it's got a very robust spear that will clearly be opening soon.

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I hope yours perk up soon.  There's still a lot of summer left and they'll probably grow right into November.  How long have they been in the ground?  I'm sure that's a factor too.  My Brahea has this disadvantage, being in a new raised bed that I created just this year (out of space now).

Despite the weather being worse than normal for you, at least you will have a longer, warmer summer than the likes of Scotland and typical summers in the north of England.

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UK_Palms

Mate, your Washingtonia is looking really good. Mine have barely grown here this season, in what has been an abysmal year. Just shockingly bad. I am going to have to mark this summer down to a 3/10 now and this year overall, I think it has to be a 1/10 now. Just due to all the storms and how prolonged the poor, below average conditions have been. I have just had another 10mm of rain here this afternoon, from yet another thunderstorm. So I have now had 6 months worth of rain in the past 10 weeks. It has been blowing a gale as well today. Only 18C at 4pm here!

Filifera...

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Filibusta hybrid

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I haven't had a summer this bad since 2013, but that year also didn't have a record cold spring, or an abnormally cold winter either, unlike this year. I probably have to go back to the 1950's to find another year that is almost as bad as this year. Sure, the jet/gulf stream or some kind of event has led to this, but I also think it must just be the luck of the draw as well I suppose. We have had a run of good summers, and springs, so I was probably overdue a bad year. Unfortunately every single 'bad' factor has aligned perfectly this year to make it just outright abysmal.

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Looking at the forecast, there's no sign of any decent weather, or even just average conditions, for at least the next 2 weeks. Temps are going to be running a good 2-3C below average, with plenty more rain and thunderstorms to come. The first half of August is going to be a washout with below average temps. Hopefully we get a heatwave during the second half of August, although the long-term models aren't looking good. We're probably going to have to rely on September being a scorcher and a record breaker. I can't see that happening though. What a wasted year this has been, for us in the southeast at least. I never could have predicted this going into 2021. If I knew I would have planned my season differently, especially in regards to tomatoes/peppers/veg. Blossom end rot is ravaging my crop this year. These ones are ruined. I am so annoyed...

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Before the storm...

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Typically it's the year that I planted my Queens out as well, which had to endue the winter and spring. And now this summer. Growth has no doubt been stunted. I am going to have to protect them heavily this winter, so they stand a better chance of growing next season. I fear I could have a record high water table as well at this rate, going into winter. God knows what that will mean for the Filifera. Winter better be warmer and drier than average to compensate for the first 7 months of this year. It is the least I can expect at this point. My tomatoes are at least 4 weeks behind last season's crop as well. I have only harvested one tomato so far. This time last year I had already harvested like 200-300, including cherry toms. The pepper plants are suffering from rot and fungal issues. Never seen that in summer before with peppers. Some have literally shrivelled up and died. This year is an utter disgrace. As I said, it's a 1/10 year now, going right back to January. 

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Samuel

Well after the lovely spell of heat last week we have gone back to sunshine and showers it feels more like late September temperatures in the low 20s but they drop fast in any showers my palms are doing well tho my CIDP is pushing up lots of leaves I came across this article  this morning which confirms the uk which includes southern England is getting wetter but also sunnier surprisingly 

 

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Ryland

Sorry to hear about your tomatoes @UK_Palms - at least your Washingtonias are both looking healthy, though yes I can tell they've been growing slower than mine (fewer post-winter leaves on the robusta).  I like the spiky look of the filifera leaves.  Mine is assisted by a very sheltered garden and it's right next to some big flagstones that radiate a lot of heat on the sunny days, which can make a 20C day feel like 25+ in the sun.

@Samuel I have heard that too - that we'll be getting wetter as well as warmer.  It's a shame since there are other parts of the world that could do with the extra rain more than us!

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sipalms

The trend continues....into the last weeks of summer.

Are the days getting noticeably shorter now there @UK_Palms?

It's 16 degrees and sunny here today and the sun feels noticeably higher and warmer.

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sipalms

Contrast that to 51N in another part of the world...

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Or in an actual psuedo-mediterranean climate;

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UK_Palms

@sipalms It's not really a fair comparison given that we are having a freak summer and a freak, off the scale year in general. In fact this time last year it was 37-38C here. What a difference a year can make. Like next year we will probably have a normal spring, or at least a warmer spring than this year, as well as a warmer summer. Going by the law of average. That record cold spring has f*cked us this year I think, or it's just synonymous with the wider problem of below average temps this year. While the next 2 weeks are going to be very poor with below average conditions, I am still hopeful that the 2nd half of August and first half of September will deliver something that is even half decent. We are owed it after the hell we have had over the past 7 months.

And yes, the days are getting noticeably shorter now. I had to leave the allotment at 9:30pm tonight as it was getting pretty dark. 3-4 weeks ago I was able to stay down there until gone 10pm. I remember being down there until almost 10:30pm on one of the nights around the solstice. We've probably lost 45 minutes of light in the mornings and 45 minutes of light in the evenings already now. So the days are about 90 minutes shorter compared to 5-6 weeks ago. That's just going by my observations. It may not be totally accurate. The days may seem a lot shorter to me as we are experiencing 'true' darkness again as of this week, now that the sun is lower. The nights definitely seem darker again.

I did manage to reach 23C here today, which is bang average, but there is definitely an autumnal feel. It's super depressing, especially looking at all my blight ravaged tomatoes and countless others that have been ruined by blossom end rot. My crop is on the brink now. That's not to say we won't have an Indian summer during the 2nd half of August and September. But even if we do, it will be too little, too late. My tomato, pepper and other veg crops are dreadful this year. Although grapes are doing surprisingly well. I can't explain that. It's just such a bizarre year. Again, totally off the scale in terms of the duration and impact of the bad weather. I don't think I will ever see another year like this in my lifetime and I am still only in my late 20's. 

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sipalms

Dear. Oh. Dear.

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UK_Palms

@sipalms Are you trying to rub it in? 

I have just had my wettest July on record, going by the 1981 Guildford statistics at least. The past 3 months have been one of the wettest spells of weather on record. I am marking this summer down to a 2/10 now. It has been way below par. The past couple of days have been truly awful. Highs of 20-21C and lots of rain. Blight is tearing through my tomato plants. The worst summer since 2013 at least. Probably worse than that one too. 2021 in general is certainly worse than 2013. It feels a lot, lot worse because it has followed that record cold spring, which itself followed an abnormally cold winter. As I said, this year is definitely a 1/10 now. Last year was a 6/10 or 7/10 at this stage. This year is a total write-off for most things. I feel like I have had Edinburgh's weather/climate for the past 7 months. No joke.

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sipalms
47 minutes ago, UK_Palms said:

@sipalms Are you trying to rub it in? 

No, I do feel sorry for your lack of growth on your palms, and tomato blight etc, it must be frustrating with the doors shortly closing on Summer 2021. Do remember though that Palms like dactilyfera and syagrus are heat-loving palms and will never truly be at home in the UK anywhere. At least not in this century.

It's just that rewind a year or two ago and there were multiple threads whereby you fiercely claimed and defended that your climate was Mediterranean and the south of England (plus parts of London) were 'subtropical'.  This had some of us baffled. 

And just a couple of months ago, at the end of Spring, you were saying that record breaking heatwaves would be coming in just a couple of weeks etc etc etc. 

I get that this year has been a bit average overall, I'll soon be analysing and posting the June and July stats for London and compare them to the last 70 years of data to bring some perspective to the discussion. 

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sipalms

 

1 hour ago, UK_Palms said:

going by the 1981 Guildford statistics at least.

Also Ben - what nearby towns do you reference for temperature data near you? I understand that Guildford doesn't have a MetOffice official station from what you've said previously - or does it? Where else nearby? I'm just getting my research cap on for looking into this abysmal situation and how it compares to historical weather data.

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UK_Palms
1 minute ago, sipalms said:

No, I do feel sorry for your lack of growth on your palms, and tomato blight etc, it must be frustrating with the doors shortly closing on Summer 2021. Do remember though that Palms like dactilyfera and syagrus are heat-loving palms and will never truly be at home in the UK anywhere. At least not in this century.

It's just that rewind a year or two ago and there were multiple threads whereby you fiercely claimed and defended that your climate was Mediterranean and the south of England (plus parts of London) were 'subtropical'.  This had some of us baffled. 

And just a couple of months ago, at the end of Spring, you were saying that record breaking heatwaves would be coming in just a couple of weeks etc etc etc. 

I get that this year has been a bit average overall, I'll soon be analysing and posting the June and July stats for London and compare them to the last 70 years of data to bring some perspective to the discussion. 

This is a freak year in general. I have never seen so many records broken in such a short period of time. The weather has been pretty bad since January, minus March and the first two weeks of June. The record cold spring has clearly had a knock on effect for summer too. It has been wetter, cloudier and cooler than average for the whole of western Europe and especially the UK, Belgium and Netherlands. I had a week of 30C+ temperatures during the 3rd week of July, but that was only after 4 weeks of wet, windy, overcast 20C weather, which we have got again now. Recent summers have been FAR sunnier and warmer. 2021 is just a freak off the scale year. Again Dutch and Belgium people can attest to that as well.

I have noticed, in recent years, a trend towards drier and warmer summer conditions and far wetter winter conditions, hence my claims. In fact all those Phoenix and Washingtonia probably wouldn't be thriving unless there was some substance to that claim. That's not to say every year will follow course. How was I supposed to know that we would get a record breaking, crappy, cool, wet year. In particular the lack of sunshine hours has been one of the biggest concerns. I have probably had 50% of my July average sunshine hours. June was at 70% and May an abysmal 40%. I don't think this trend will continue next year, but if it does it obviously shuts down the Csb argument. This is probably just a freak year with freak weather patterns though.

I'm not this guy just for the record, but he agrees with my verdict pretty much. 

 

 

Large sections of western and central Europe faring far worse than the UK temperature-wise over the next week. Quite widespread cold, especially in France, Spain and Scandinavia, while Greece and Turkey bakes in 40-45C temps.

 

 

If this GFS model run comes true in mid August, I will eat my cacti collection. At this rate, we need a 2 week heatwave during the second half of August and then the hottest, driest September on record as well to follow that. Even then it would still only make it like a 4/10 summer at best. September HAS to perform this year now though.

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Guildford doesn't have an 'official' Met station. The nearest one to me, as the bird flies, would be the Met station at Wisley. After that it would be Farnborough, but they usually run 1-2C cooler than me there on the hottest of days and coldest of nights. The station at Wisley is also right out in an open field with no buildings or UHI. Guildford will always be 1-2C warmer than Wisley on hot summer days. Even here, the microclimate of my garden and neighbourhood probably means I run a bit warmer than Wisley, especially on hot summer days. If the Met would just put a station in Guildford, say at the Cathedral, that would solve this issue. It also increases the chance of being able to confirm record temperatures as western Surrey is one of the warmest places in summer in the UK. Western and southwest London are only really warmer. 

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JohnnyKarelian
2 hours ago, UK_Palms said:

 I feel like I have had Edinburgh's weather/climate for the past 7 months. No joke.

@UK_Palms Edinburgh's weather can't be that bad surely? or are the over 500,000 inhabitants made of something different and can withstand the weather better than you? :P Average sun hours there are also around 1300/1400, so they do get their dose of sunshine per year too, like you! 

 

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Teegurr
On 8/1/2021 at 8:02 PM, sipalms said:

No, I do feel sorry for your lack of growth on your palms, and tomato blight etc, it must be frustrating with the doors shortly closing on Summer 2021. Do remember though that Palms like dactilyfera and syagrus are heat-loving palms and will never truly be at home in the UK anywhere. At least not in this century.

It's just that rewind a year or two ago and there were multiple threads whereby you fiercely claimed and defended that your climate was Mediterranean and the south of England (plus parts of London) were 'subtropical'.  This had some of us baffled. 

And just a couple of months ago, at the end of Spring, you were saying that record breaking heatwaves would be coming in just a couple of weeks etc etc etc. 

I get that this year has been a bit average overall, I'll soon be analysing and posting the June and July stats for London and compare them to the last 70 years of data to bring some perspective to the discussion. 

In a nutshell:

SI: terrible, gloomy weather, eh? Not a med climate after all, haha. Real subtropical temperatures happening now

*insert London weather graph with drizzly days and 19c highs/13c lows*

Samuel chips in with the old: nice warm summer med climate eh what you don't get is england will always be oceanic we are way off from the mediterranean influence of southern europe ive been here over 30 years this isnt the first time this has happened at all in fact the weathers been getting wetter 

UKpalms: Freak year. It's unprecedented. Never will have something like this in a long, long time. It's just been a rollercoaster of a year. First we have loads of late frosts and the worst spring in hundreds of years, it's been a terrible year, honestly I wouldn't give it more than a 2/10.

Later: Gets dry weather for a week: "You can really see the Csb influence working here"

You guys love this stuff, don't you? I won't lie, I like it too, and take my joking with a grain of salt.

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sipalms
1 hour ago, Teegurr said:

In a nutshell:

SI: terrible, gloomy weather, eh? Not a med climate after all, haha. Real subtropical temperatures happening now

*insert London weather graph with drizzly days and 19c highs/13c lows*

Samuel chips in with the old: nice warm summer med climate eh what you don't get is england will always be oceanic we are way off from the mediterranean influence of southern europe ive been here over 30 years this isnt the first time this has happened at all in fact the weathers been getting wetter 

UKpalms: Freak year. It's unprecedented. Never will have something like this in a long, long time. It's just been a rollercoaster of a year. First we have loads of late frosts and the worst spring in hundreds of years, it's been a terrible year, honestly I wouldn't give it more than a 2/10.

Later: Gets dry weather for a week: "You can really see the Csb influence working here"

You guys love this stuff, don't you? I won't lie, I like it too, and take my joking with a grain of salt.

Frankly I like it too. It's just too fun....  you've got the above workflow bang on!

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Samuel

The mixed summer continues temperatures just making it into the low 20s with plenty of cloud and occasional showers it has generally been a poor year for weather but it definitely isn’t a once in a lifetime event  its just the fact that we have been having abnormally warm and sunny seasons recently so this year feels worse  this year more typical  of what the uk was like before the 90s and shows we are still oceanic not summer med I can think of plenty of years that had worse weather July 1988 for example had rain fall every day and it didn’t get above 22c all month even in central London now that’s what you call a disaster fast forward 30 years we now people have  complaining that we haven’t gone above 34c yet  this year when until very recently it was a very rare event 

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sipalms

Looks like the oceanic trend is continuing right through to the last days of Summer.

@UK_Palms, have you heard any indications as to autumn and winter long range predictions?

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UK_Palms

I really should change the title of this thread to "coldest summer on record for UK" because this summer has been truly crap. Like depressingly bad. Okay, so maybe it hasn't actually been our coldest ever summer, but it has still been pretty damn bad due to all the rainfall, cloud cover and the lack of heat combined. At the very least, it is my coldest and dullest summer in a decade, since 2011. It's also my wettest summer in 40 years here, with May, June and July all seeing record rainfall. I've now had 127% of my annual average rainfall already (1981>) and we are only in August. So this summer is definitely up there with the worst and it is probably made even worse by the record cold spring that we had, which summer has then followed. Anyway, August is following suit with the other months...

 

 

 

 

We are currently on course for the lowest August Max in at least 18 years, since I can't see us reaching 26.7C+ between now and the end of month. My highest here this August is an utterly pathetic 24.1C, compared to the 39C that I recorded last August. Most days have reached about 21C. So it really is a cold, gloomy below average August. 

 

 

 

 

The past 4-5 months have felt especially bad, but the general trend, or theme, of poor, below average weather has been going on for 8 months now, since the start of 2021. January and February were both cold and snowy, with below average conditions. March has been the only month in the whole of 2021 where we have had decent, above average conditions. January, February, April, May, June, July and August so far have been poor and below average in one way or another. Something is definitely 'off' this year, whether that is the gulf stream, jet stream, Azores high, arctic warming etc. Something isn't right this year, plus we probably have just had a bit of bad luck as well. Maybe we were overdue a cold, wet year in part, however this year is just ridiculous.

 

 

@sipalms That forecast you posted is pathetic and it's actually overstating the temperatures. I seriously doubt it will reach 24C on Saturday here. More like 21C. That is the story of this summer... far too many below average days with 20-22C temperatures and not enough above average days with say 25-26C temperatures. The average summer high here is approximately 23-24C, but far too many days have fallen short of that this summer. Usually we will have a week of 18-22C temperatures, followed by a week of 25-30C temperatures. Instead we have just had weeks on end of 20-22C temps with barely any heat bursts. Not like in recent years.

 

 

I have been growing tomatoes at my house for the past 5 years now and I have never seen blight once here. Not even during the autumn/fall. At the allotment maybe, but never at the house. Yet this summer, my tomato plants have been wiped out completely at the house pretty much. I have lost about 95% of my crop. Over 50 plants. Wish I never bothered with tomatoes this year. It's a devastating pill to swallow. Beefsteaks rotten to the core and infected with blight. Everything is infected. I am hearing that this is the worst year for blight in over 50 years, since the late 1970's. Probably due to that record cool, wet spring and an abnormally cool, wet summer...

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I have a few plants that are still hanging on, but they are infected as well and obviously on borrowed time. Every single plant has been infected. I will rip every plant this weekend. 

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I have to give this summer an overall rating of 2/10 right now, although it is on course to potentially be 1/10. This year as well, 2021, is pretty much a 1/10 year as well due to how many below average, poor months we have had this year. At a push, it is maybe a 2/10 year, although I think that is being generous. Here is my breakdown of how I rate this year...

January - 3/10 

February - 3/10

March - 6/10 

April - 2/10 

May - 1/10 

June - 3/10 

July - 3/10 

August so far - 3/10

As far as long term forecasts go, it is hard to say whether it will improve going into September and whether a decent run of normality will return. Based on the theme/trend of recent months, I expect the poor weather to continue well into autumn/fall. I think 2022 will be far warmer and drier, since this year is obviously a blip, but I also don't see this poor run ending any time soon. I just hope the coming winter is kind to us. Last winter was a really poor one with below average temps and snow. We can't have that again, off the back of a record bad spring and summer. We have suffered enough this year. What a truly terrible year, weather-wise. Certainly the worst in my lifetime. 

It looks like high pressure will finally be returning, but I don't expect us to get anything above 24-25C at best during the next 10-14 days. Probably just highs of 22-23C, which is still pretty poor for a 'warm' spell during August. Sums up this summer and year though.

 

 

@Axel Amsterdam How has this summer been for you guys over in the Netherlands? I'm guessing it has been below average for you too? I know you guys had an even worse winter than we did, followed by a terrible spring for us both and most of Europe in general. Summer hasn't been much better either, frankly. Certainly my worst summer since at least 2011, if not my lifetime. It seems we have really been unlucky with the weather in northwestern Europe this year. Winter, spring and summer all terrible to far. 2021 is definitely a year to forget for me here. 

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Axel Amsterdam

Yes same here, the only palm that seems to enjoy the grey wet cool summerweather is my butia eriospatha. It absolutely needs no heat to do well. 

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UK_Palms

I managed to reach 24C on Sunday and there was quite a bit of sun, similar to Saturday. The conditions are certainly better than they have been in recent weeks, but we are still only looking at average temperatures still. That wouldn't be an issue if we had just had a heatwave, or above average temperatures during previous weeks. But we've basically had 4-5 weeks of below average temperatures and overcast, wet weather since the last 'hot' spell, followed by what is going to just be average temperatures now. Highs of 22-23C at best really. Totally normal for the time of year, but I really expect better than that given how crap the previous weeks have been. After a few weeks of 20-22C highs, we should be getting a week of 30C highs now. Well obviously not this year...

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No surprise that England, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark etc all saw below average conditions this weekend and over the past 7-10 days. That has been the story of this year, as has the record heat that has been seen in Russia and the arctic, still clearly in full swing...

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High pressure is definitely building with some very dry conditions set to prevail. Highest pressure in Europe is going to be over the UK. Looking at the models, I may not see any more rainfall here for a few weeks now, thankfully. However that does not necessarily equate to hot or even warm conditions too, not this far out from the summer solstice now. In June or July, it would result in a boiling hot heatwave. In late August the sun intensity is much lower so it won't get anywhere near as warm. Just dry and mild by the looks of things. Decent, dry, sunny conditions though, I suppose. At least compared to what we have had in recent weeks...

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It looks like we are going to be pretty dry rom here until mild September, at least. That does not equate to hot, or even warm though, this far from the summer solstice.

Look away now if you live in Europe. Temperatures widely 5C below average by next weekend with a deep autumnal theme setting in...

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The European model does not look good for London and Paris, while Scotland and Ireland may have heatwaves, supposedly. France and Germany looking very cold by next weekend...

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American model slightly better for us here in southeastern England, but temperatures still widely 5-10C below average across central Europe...

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The far west of Europe should recover due to that high pressure and the Atlantic influence keeping it mild, but it looks like unseasonably early and possibly record breaking frosts for central and eastern Europe in late August - early September. Temperatures 12C+ below average in some places. Abnormally strong arctic influence for late August, early September. What a disgusting forecast ensemble... :o

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Hutch

Gosh....Darn...you guys need a break..that looks scary for late Aug...Frost in late August...What!!!..keep us posted on that one..unreal!

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sipalms
1 hour ago, Hutch said:

Gosh....Darn...you guys need a break..that looks scary for late Aug...Frost in late August...What!!!..keep us posted on that one..unreal!

It's anomaly from average (not actual temp)

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UK_Palms

Monday's temperature was down 3C on Monday with a high of just 21C / 70F here. That just isn't good enough given the weeks of average or below average conditions. This is shaping up to be the worst summer on record for my area, going by the 1981 Guildford records. Really, really poor. 

It looks like it is going to be the lowest August maxima in 35 years, since way back in 1986. Thoroughly pathetic levels of heat this summer.

 

 

Provisionally it was on course to be the dullest August on record, but with high pressure firmly in control now, it will probably only be the 2nd or 3rd dullest August on record now. My location has probably been significantly more duller than the UK average for this year though. Summer 2021 is almost certainly in the top 3 lowest for sunshine hours in my area. 

 

 

Truly horrific sunshine levels in the southwest over the past 10 days. Definitely has to be amongst the worst on record for summer, if not any season, potentially... 

 

 

Higher than average overnight temperatures due to all the cloud cover has definitely offset the average temperature for the month, when in reality it has been a very poor month...

 

 

Coastal waters around the UK are well below average for the time of year and probably contributing to the temperature issues, as well as being a part of the wider problem themselves. I don't think I have ever seen sea temperatures that low for us in late August. Really sums up this summer here. It's warmer in the Baltic. 

 

 

Tomorrow should be a bit warmer and at least it's going to be staying dry for a while now. I've had more rain in the past 4 months than I had in the whole of 2018. 

 

 

The high pressure block is in effect directly over the UK, suppressing rainfall. That setup is something we would normally see in May or June, which is statistically my driest months. This year that was not the case at all. It's been a totally whacky year for us.

 

It's too little too late now, although the temperatures during this dry, sunny spell may actually be a shade below average still. So it's not really that much of an improvement on what we should expect for late August. September is really going to have to deliver with some record breaking heat for us. It won't happen, but here's to wishing...

Also, the forecast ensemble gets even worse for parts of Europe. Some places in southern Germany may see highs of just 10C this weekend. Thoroughly autumnal... 

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GFS isn't any better as of tonight. Really cold conditions of late August in central and eastern Europe...

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On the plus side, the American model seems to suggest a heatwave for us in early September, while eastern Europe is still, well, err.... 10-15C below average...

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@Hutch I won't get a frost here for another 2 months at least probably. First frost is usually last week of October for me, although I wouldn't be shocked if it was 2 weeks earlier in mid October this year, given how crap 2021 has been. It looks like parts of central Europe are going to be at risk of frost in 4-5 days time, which is at least 6-8 weeks earlier than normal for them too really. With the exception of southern Europe and far eastern Europe, going into Russia and the northeast arctic, the vast majority of western and central Europe has been abnormally cool, wet and crappy for many, many months now. Since way back in January. There has been a couple of heat bursts in June and July, but generally speaking spring and summer have been abysmal for much of Europe. Like freakishly bad.  

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UK_Palms

It's official... this is actually my dullest summer on record here in southeast England. The dullest for Guildford going by the 1981 records. Also the dullest summer on record at Heathrow since records began in 1957. Even duller than summer 1968 when only 440 hours of sunshine were recorded. For me here, I have had approximately 425 hours of sunshine this summer, so it is the dullest summer on record by at least 15 sunshine hours. Possibly more. It will be interesting to know what the official stations at Farnborough and Wisley recorded.  

 

By my reckoning I have seen approximately 425 hours of sunshine here this summer, which is only about 65% of my usual sunshine hours for summer. That is a disgrace. Most summers I get around 600-650 hours of sunshine, so we are basically down on about 200 hours of sunshine this summer, compared to the 1981 and 1957 averages. No wonder it is the record dullest summer. I actually had 720 hours of sunshine in spring 2020 alone, compared to just 425 hours in summer 2021. That is crazy bad for summer.

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To compound that, it is also the dullest August on record too, as well as being the first ever summer month not to record 100+ hours of sunshine. So it goes from bad to worse. I have had 95 sunshine hours at most this August, probably less, which is just abysmal for any summer month.  The previous record for August was 107 hours, so it is by far my dullest August on record if I have only had 95 hours. That's 12 hours less than the previous dullest August on record. This August is also at least 5 hours worse off than June 2016 too, which is the 2nd dullest summer month on record, although they still saw 101 hours. Compared to <95 hours this August. 

 

These stats are truly dreadful. I cannot believe that it was both the dullest August on record and the dullest summer month ever on record!!!....

 

 

The Met Office map for sunshine hours paints a sorry picture for August down south. I have probably only had about 55% of my average sunshine hours for August here. That is almost unprecedented. I have probably had less than 95 hours this August, compared to the average of 200 hours of sunshine for August. 

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Consequently the lack of sunshine hours also limited solar heating, meaning a lack of 'hot' days with daytime temperatures in general running below average. Last August, in 2020, I had an average high of 24.9C, compared to a pathetic 21.8C this August just gone. That is 3C cooler than the previous August and 2C cooler than average here. I also had a high of 39.1C in August 2020, compared to a rather pathetic high of 24.7C in August 2021. So my highest temperature this August was actually even lower than the average high for the previous August. Such a poor month, in a poor summer, in a poor year for us!

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As if things can't possibly get worse for us, this is also the first time in 90 years, since 1931, that Scotland recorded a higher August temperature than England. They actually saw 27C on the west coast of Scotland this August. In comparison, I only recorded 24.7C down here in southern England. That is absolutely pathetic. The previous year, 2020, I recorded 39.1C in August, which shows just how bad this August has been to not even reach 25C once here and for Scotland to register higher temperatures than England. What an absolute shocker of a season and year!

 

London and southeastern England has experienced its lowest August maxima in at least 42 years, going back to 1979. Some parts of London and the southeast may have seen their lowest August maxima on record, potentially. A few places probably didn't see higher than 22C. For Kew Gardens, I think it is the 2nd lowest August maxima on record, which really goes to show just how heat deprived we have been this summer and especially this August just gone.  Primarily due to all the cloud-cover. 

 

 

August is certainly deserving of a 1/10 rating but this summer in general has to be a 1/10 as well. All 3 months have underperformed and been a letdown in one way or another, whether that is due to rain and floods, lack of heat, lack of sunshine etc. A thoroughly depressing summer here this year. Certainly without a doubt the worst summer in my lifetime, although I'm only in my late twenties. Possibly the worst summer in over 50 years though here, when taking everything into account. It's certainly the worst ever summer for sunshine hours. That coming after the 2nd coldest spring on record and my coldest ever April and May on record. January and February were crap too. What a terrible year. This year is a 1/10 year.

 

The hottest 'official' summer temperature was 32.2C at Heathrow in July. What's the bet that this year's hottest temperature will come in September this year? It looks like September may be shaping up to be warmer, sunnier and drier than August. It wouldn't be the first time that has happened, as 35C has been seen in September before, but it is weird nonetheless if September is significantly warmer and sunnier than August. This September will almost certainly be better than August, due to just how off the scale bad August was. It looks like August's maxima will be beaten next week.

Both the European and American forecast models are showing 30C+ exactly a week from now...

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American model concentrates the heat closer to London and southeast England...

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It will definitely be warmer than August's highest max of 24.7C here. Hopefully warmer than the 32C July max at Heathrow as well. I am going to predict an official high of 34C at Heathrow on 7th or 8th September. Summer didn't perform at all one bit, so September really needs to set an example. Fingers crossed. Of course it could just fizzle out and we end up with 25-26C highs at best, which will still be warmer than anything we saw in August...

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Longer range is looking pretty good as well. Certainly better than August was, although that isn't hard.

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Here is the current BBC forecast for London. I expect those temperatures will be upscaled a few degrees C in the next 24-48 hours. The August maxima at Heathrow and Kew Gardens was a pathetic 24C. We are almost certainly going to exceed that in the coming week or so. We may hit 30C+ in some places next week, looking at the forecast model maps. I'm not sure when we last had a September that was both hotter and sunnier than August? We probably have to go back about 30-40 years for the last occasion. 

951993142_Screenshot2021-09-02at00_01_43.thumb.png.6f87811641252aa47fab60d1f1a60145.png

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sipalms
On 9/2/2021 at 4:59 PM, UK_Palms said:

Possibly the worst summer in over 50 years though here, when taking everything into account. It's certainly the worst ever summer for sunshine hours. That coming after the 2nd coldest spring on record and my coldest ever April and May on record. January and February were crap too. What a terrible year. This year is a 1/10 year.

You can blame the USA, Australia and New Zealand with their extremely high carbon emissions per capita for your shi**est year on record buddy.

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UK_Palms
11 minutes ago, sipalms said:

You can blame the USA, Australia and New Zealand with their extremely high carbon emissions per capita for your shi**est year on record buddy.

What a ridiculous, stupid, convoluted comment. Grow up, Simon. I am not blaming any nation for a statistical anomaly that is 2021 in northwestern Europe. We have had a freak year that will not correlate with previous years, or future years to come. 2021 is a total statistical anomaly for us here and in northwestern Europe, in many different ways. Do you understand that!?

Obviously I blame China as much as anyone for global pollution and C02 emissions, but the USA are equally to blame, especially per capita. So let's not get it conflated. Pretty much every country could do better in reducing emissions and being more eco-friendly, however China and the USA are in a league of their own. I'm sorry but per capita, the USA is far worse than China. Fact. It's only because of China's massive population that they emit so much C02 as a total amount. Proportionately though, the USA is far worse. Fact. I am not blaming anyone or trying to point the finger, I am merely separating fact from fiction. Too many people blame China, when the problem lies closer to home. We can all do better, including us here in the UK. End of.

Anyway, it looks like September in the UK will far outperform August now and it goes to show just how crap our summer was this year and how screwed 2021 is... we should see 30C+ in places next week. Maybe as high as 33-34C somewhere, which still wouldn't break the UK September record of 35.6C...

 

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Aceraceae

You guys expect very steady weather in the oceanic climate. The coldest days of April and may in London were only 10゚ below average: 33 during the April cold snap versus 43 low. And the Winter was mild

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