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Winter Results


bubba
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Winter is over for those spots in the 48 that are involved in the growing of all things Tropical.Using the internationally accepted Cooling/Heating Degree Method for this Winter,the following constitute the Results:

Texas-

Brownsville-Cooling-260 hours;Heating-283 hours

Harligen-Cooling-255 hours;Heating-346 hours

San Antonio-Cooling-83 hours;Heating-800 hours

Florida-

Marathon-Cooling-793 hours;Heating-20 hours

Miami-Cooling-637 hours;Heating-27 hours

Ft.Lauderdale- Cooling-645 hours;Heating-28 hours

Naples-Cooling-431 hours;Heating-76 hours

West Palm-Cooling-469 hours;Heating-69 hours

Melbourne-Cooling-295;Heating-159 hours

California-

Los Angeles-Cooling-3;Heating-715 hours

Palm Springs-Cooling-0;Heating-796 hours

Arizona-

Phoenix-Cooling-0;Heating-808 hours

Louisiana-

New Orleans-Cooling-106;Heating-701 hours

Observations-Notwithstanding the incredible heat in Texas,Melbourne,Florida is warmer than Brownsville. I would not have predicted this.

Prickly suggested that San Antonio was warmer than Phoenix this year and he was correct.Although both share the approximate Winter Heating requirements,San Antonio's 83 Cooling hours to 0 for Phoenix proves this point.

New Orleans,Louisiana proves to be substantially warmer than California or Arizona.Never would have guessed that.

California and Arizona were extremely Cool/Cold this year.Yearly averages,while warmer,are still suprising. It is amazing what is grown Tropically in an area as far North as Atlanta

There is a reason Tropical Palms and Plants luxuriate in South Florida.Look at the Numbers.More Cooling hours here in Winter than some places have all year. No wonder my air conditioner runs 365 a year!Heating hours,what a joke.Hands down no competition. Not even close.

Please give comments,critiques,arguments or points of destinction. Failure to comment will be construed as acceptance of the facts as stated.If you request changes in the results, please call me for wire transfer instructions.

What you look for is what is looking

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I still contend that the RGV of Texas is virtually idendical and interchangeable with the Tampa/Orlando corridor.  Some years the Valey would be slightly warmer, other years Orlando slightly warmer.  Melbourne is on the coast so is possibly slightly wamer, but not noticeably so.

TX gernerally speaking, heats up faster than Cent. and N. FL in spring, so that I would venture to say if you compared Brownsville, Harlingen or McAllen to say Melbourne for the period of Feb - Apr, the Valley would have more CDD

San Anonio has been generally mild this winter.  For example the average high the first half of Feb has been about 75F.  SA always gets some 80F+ days in Dec and Jan, thus the 83 CDD.  too bad we have to deal with the occasional blasts of cold air.

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Jim,Melbourne is a good deal South of Orlando and on the Coast.I can remember a Coconut palm that was there forever when coming into town.I agree that RGV definitely is analagous to Orlando Tampa Corriodor or slightly warmer.

What you look for is what is looking

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Bubba - I don't have air conditioning. On those rare days where it's above 85F, an ocean breeze usually kicks in in the afternoon. I can't imagine spending the money to have it installed for the few heat spells we have.

Zone 9b/10a, Sunset Zone 22

7 miles inland. Elevation 120ft (37m)

Average annual low temp: 30F (-1C)

Average annual rainfall: 8" (20cm)

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Heating and cooling hours is a very important part of the equation.  

The other equally important part is that of the extremes.  An average January low temp is one thing, but if only one of those nights is 17 degrees, then it is all over for some plants, averages be damned.  

So, it is a combination of both that makes the determination, not one or the other.  Two places can have exactly the same averages, but with different extremes what will grow there can be vastly different.

As a Gulf Coast resident, of this I am painfully aware.

IMO

Keith

In my post I sometimes express "my" opinion. Warning, it may differ from "your" opinion. If so, please do not feel insulted, just state your own if you wish. Any data in this post is provided 'as is' and in no event shall I be liable for any damages, including, without limitation, damages resulting from accuracy or lack thereof, insult, or any other damages

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(bubba @ Feb. 17 2008,18:49)

QUOTE
Jim,Melbourne is a good deal South of Orlando and on the Coast.I can remember a Coconut palm that was there forever when coming into town.I agree that RGV definitely is analagous to Orlando Tampa Corriodor or slightly warmer.

There are some fruting coconuts in the RGV, but none (I think) that have been there prior to 1989.

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(osideterry @ Feb. 17 2008,19:04)

QUOTE
Bubba - I don't have air conditioning. On those rare days where it's above 85F, an ocean breeze usually kicks in in the afternoon. I can't imagine spending the money to have it installed for the few heat spells we have.

Must be nice, my AC bill is outrageous as my AC runs non stop for 6-7 months.  I have to run it occasionally during winter on warm days.

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(keiththibodeaux @ Feb. 17 2008,19:05)

QUOTE
Heating and cooling hours is a very important part of the equation.  

The other equally important part is that of the extremes.  An average January low temp is one thing, but if only one of those nights is 17 degrees, then it is all over for some plants, averages be damned.  

So, it is a combination of both that makes the determination, not one or the other.  Two places can have exactly the same averages, but with different extremes what will grow there can be vastly different.

As a Gulf Coast resident, of this I am painfully aware.

IMO

Keith

Very well said.  I also feel South Texas is more vulnerable to artic cold fronts than interior Central Florida.  South Texas also is more on the extreme side with temps.  In a couple of days it may warm up to 84 in January in South Texas, but in Orlando after the same front it may only be around 72.

Pinellas Park, Florida

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(Derekjp @ Feb. 17 2008,23:26)

QUOTE

(keiththibodeaux @ Feb. 17 2008,19:05)

QUOTE
Heating and cooling hours is a very important part of the equation.  

The other equally important part is that of the extremes.  An average January low temp is one thing, but if only one of those nights is 17 degrees, then it is all over for some plants, averages be damned.  

So, it is a combination of both that makes the determination, not one or the other.  Two places can have exactly the same averages, but with different extremes what will grow there can be vastly different.

As a Gulf Coast resident, of this I am painfully aware.

IMO

Keith

Very well said.  I also feel South Texas is more vulnerable to artic cold fronts than interior Central Florida.  South Texas also is more on the extreme side with temps.  In a couple of days it may warm up to 84 in January in South Texas, but in Orlando after the same front it may only be around 72.

Depends on what you mean by South Texas.  If you are talking about Deep South Texas (Rio Grande Valley), then no, they are not more vulnerable to artic cold fronts than Central FL.  If you are talking elsewhere in S. TX, then I would definitely agree with you.

The averages are virtually identical, and both places have all time record lows in the mid/upper teens.

The low in Brownsville TX this winter was 37F, zone 10B.  Probably warmer than most of Central FL I would guess without looking up the stats.

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Tampa is coastal too dudes.  At least my part of town is.  My temps in peninsular south Tampa are nearly identical and often warmer than Melbourne.  Don't put me in that "corridor".

South Tampa has a few coconuts and several Royals that have been around since 1990.  A few of the Royals, predate 1989 albeit only a few.

Tampa, Interbay Peninsula, Florida, USA

subtropical USDA Zone 10A

Bokeelia, Pine Island, Florida, USA

subtropical USDA Zone 10B

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Using the internationally accepted Cooling/Heating Degree Method

I refuse to accept this method.

Happy Gardening

Cheers,

Wal

Queensland, Australia.

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I thiink the method is sound, so long as one realizes it is only a part of the equation.  To me, the big 3 are:

Heating/Cooling hours

Temperature extremes

Presence or non-presence of frost

In my post I sometimes express "my" opinion. Warning, it may differ from "your" opinion. If so, please do not feel insulted, just state your own if you wish. Any data in this post is provided 'as is' and in no event shall I be liable for any damages, including, without limitation, damages resulting from accuracy or lack thereof, insult, or any other damages

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(syersj @ Feb. 18 2008,01:20)

QUOTE
Depends on what you mean by South Texas.  If you are talking about Deep South Texas (Rio Grande Valley), then no, they are not more vulnerable to artic cold fronts than Central FL.  If you are talking elsewhere in S. TX, then I would definitely agree with you.

The averages are virtually identical, and both places have all time record lows in the mid/upper teens.

The low in Brownsville TX this winter was 37F, zone 10B.  Probably warmer than most of Central FL I would guess without looking up the stats.

I don't know.  I haven't looked up the climate data for the RGV, but I would guess it's close to Orlando, probably a few degrees colder for record lows.  I took a trip to South Padre in 98 and didn't see too much in the way of palms except for sabals, mexican fan palms, butias and a few queens.  I was rather disappointed as the place reminded me of a dry version of Daytona Beach.  Maybe it's changed since then or there aren't as many palm nuts down there.  I went to Orlando last fall and I saw several royals and adonidias.

Pinellas Park, Florida

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(Derekjp @ Feb. 18 2008,12:47)

QUOTE

(syersj @ Feb. 18 2008,01:20)

QUOTE
Depends on what you mean by South Texas.  If you are talking about Deep South Texas (Rio Grande Valley), then no, they are not more vulnerable to artic cold fronts than Central FL.  If you are talking elsewhere in S. TX, then I would definitely agree with you.

The averages are virtually identical, and both places have all time record lows in the mid/upper teens.

The low in Brownsville TX this winter was 37F, zone 10B.  Probably warmer than most of Central FL I would guess without looking up the stats.

I don't know.  I haven't looked up the climate data for the RGV, but I would guess it's close to Orlando, probably a few degrees colder for record lows.  I took a trip to South Padre in 98 and didn't see too much in the way of palms except for sabals, mexican fan palms, butias and a few queens.  I was rather disappointed as the place reminded me of a dry version of Daytona Beach.  Maybe it's changed since then or there aren't as many palm nuts down there.  I went to Orlando last fall and I saw several royals and adonidias.

Yeah, but I bet you saw millions of Washingtonias everywhere :D

The all time low for Brownsville is around 15, for Orlando around 18F, so it's pretty close.  

It's basically a dry version of Central FL, you're correct.

There are a lot of palm nuts growing tropicals though, there are a decent # of royals.

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(keiththibodeaux @ Feb. 18 2008,09:43)

QUOTE
I thiink the method is sound, so long as one realizes it is only a part of the equation.  To me, the big 3 are:

Heating/Cooling hours

Temperature extremes

Presence or non-presence of frost

i agree keith what you say that of cooling / heating / frost. but informations of frost is some thing you cant find easy on the internet. this is some thing of the humiditey. no its not perfect.

but i think bubbas way of doing this is very good its showing very well whats happenned in this winter in the united states. its like to take a fast foto.

thanks bubba for the time you do every day for this.

TEMP. JAN. 21/10 C (69/50 F), AUG. 29/20 C (84/68 F). DESERT BY OCEAN SUNNY DRY. RAIN: 220 MM (8.66 INCHS). BY OCEAN ZONE 11 NO FREEZES.

5845d02ceb988_3-copia.jpg.447ccc2a7cc4c6

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Bubba

In the WEATHER/CLIMATE thread, scroll down to "2007 weather review".  When you compare my to Larry's end-of-year stats, it makes Houston and Tampa look identical.

You didn't do degree day calcs for Houston, but I wonder how much different this would look from Tampa.  Houston would probably have more of each, cooling and heating (indicating a larger daily and seasonal temperature graph amplitude).  How easy would it be for you to look this up from the source you're using?

Steve

USDA Zone 9a/b, AHS Heat Zone 9, Sunset Zone 28

49'/14m above sea level, 25mi/40km to Galveston Bay

Long-term average rainfall 47.84"/1215mm

Near-term (7yr) average rainfall 55.44"/1410mm

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(steve 9atx @ Feb. 18 2008,16:12)

QUOTE
Bubba

In the WEATHER/CLIMATE thread, scroll down to "2007 weather review".  When you compare my to Larry's end-of-year stats, it makes Houston and Tampa look identical.

You didn't do degree day calcs for Houston, but I wonder how much different this would look from Tampa.  Houston would probably have more of each, cooling and heating (indicating a larger daily and seasonal temperature graph amplitude).  How easy would it be for you to look this up from the source you're using?

Steve

Houston is more in line with Jacksonville climate wise.  Houston is little warmer in the summer but pretty close in the winter.

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(steve 9atx @ Feb. 18 2008,16:12)

QUOTE
Bubba

In the WEATHER/CLIMATE thread, scroll down to "2007 weather review".  When you compare my to Larry's end-of-year stats, it makes Houston and Tampa look identical.

Steve-

My data is for my yard in Tarpon Springs.  But, it should be pretty close to Tampa.

In this case for 2007, Houston was actually warmer average temp-wise for the year.  I am not sure if thats in trend with long term averages or not.

Larry 

Palm Harbor, FL 10a / Ft Myers, FL 10b

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I don't understand this Cooling/Heating Degree method.

I do know that various areas around Tampa Bay can be quite different.  Even areas of the City of Tampa can be different - Ray's place is far warmer than more inland areas and New Tampa/Lutz.

They must've had a very bad chill back in early January, as I saw some very burned palms.  When a roeb has damage, that's bad.  Over here, we didn't have a freeze - but West Lealman had some icing (ugh) as did Pinellas Park.

St. Pete

Zone - a wacked-out place between 9b & 10

Elevation = 44' - not that it does any good

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(spockvr6 @ Feb. 18 2008,18:16)

QUOTE

(steve 9atx @ Feb. 18 2008,16:12)

QUOTE
Bubba

In the WEATHER/CLIMATE thread, scroll down to "2007 weather review".  When you compare my to Larry's end-of-year stats, it makes Houston and Tampa look identical.

Steve-

My data is for my yard in Tarpon Springs.  But, it should be pretty close to Tampa.

In this case for 2007, Houston was actually warmer average temp-wise for the year.  I am not sure if thats in trend with long term averages or not.

Houston is hotter than Tampa in the summer (more mid/upper 90s to 100).  And Houston is extremely humid to boot.  That somewhat offsets Houston being cooler in winter.  Tampa's Jan average is 70/52 compared to Houston 63/45.  Houston quickly catches up quickly in spring.

          Houston                      Tampa  

Jan     63.0° F 45.0° F     70.0° F 52.0° F

Feb    67.0° F 48.0° F     72.0° F 54.0° F

Mar    74.0° F 55.0° F     76.0° F 58.0° F

Apr    79.0° F 61.0° F      81.0° F 62.0° F

May   86.0° F 68.0° F      86.0° F 69.0° F

Jun    91.0° F 74.0° F     89.0° F 74.0° F

Jul     94.0° F 75.0° F     90.0° F 75.0° F

Aug   93.0° F 75.0° F     90.0° F 75.0° F

Sep   89.0° F 72.0° F     89.0° F 74.0° F

Oct    82.0° F 62.0° F     84.0° F 68.0° F

Nov   73.0° F 53.0° F     78.0° F 61.0° F

Dec   65.0° F 47.0° F     72.0° F 55.0° F

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Terry-Substantive comment about So Cal Climate that is appreciated.

Keith-Substantive comment about Gulf Coast Climate that is appreciated.

Derek-Distinctions noted.

Ray/Sunny-Your portion of Tampa and St.Pete is hereby exempted from the "Corridor".

Wal/Siafu-Your objections are duly noted.

Cristobal-Thank you.

Jim-Appreciate your helpful comments.

Steve,I computed Galveston and Houston for Dec1,2007-Feb.15,2008.

Galveston-Heating-643 hours;Cooling-81 hours

Houston-Heating-761 hours;Cooling-24 hours

I have performed.I see no Texas truisms. Failure to provide same shall cause the cancellation of all Negotiable Instruments World Wide ab initio.All remaining cash accounts will be settled by the undersigned on a pari passu/case by case basis.Wire Instuctions will be provided upon appropriate request.This,of course,expressly excepts all matters involving "Flynn",who allegedly hails from the Isle of Man and whose alleged misdeeds of ignomy have placed him on the Hall of Infamy ,forever.

What you look for is what is looking

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Jim, I read a very informative article in the Texas Palm Society materials,which chronical the Freezes in the RGV.The article notes that the problem presented by the Texas freezes results out of their long-term nature.By this,I mean the freezes duration exceeding 3 full days below freezing.This was suprising and definitely a point of separation from Florida.

Also the Article listed the all-time low of Brownsville at 12F.,Laredo 5F and Houston 5F.

What you look for is what is looking

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Larry,I meant no disrespect by my failure to include you.I appreciate your comments and Missed you by accident.

What you look for is what is looking

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Keep it up, Bubba.  I'll be on you like a chicken on a june bug......

USDA Zone 9a/b, AHS Heat Zone 9, Sunset Zone 28

49'/14m above sea level, 25mi/40km to Galveston Bay

Long-term average rainfall 47.84"/1215mm

Near-term (7yr) average rainfall 55.44"/1410mm

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(steve 9atx @ Feb. 19 2008,11:02)

QUOTE
I'll be on you like a chicken on a june bug......

I busted up in open laughter on that one. - k

In my post I sometimes express "my" opinion. Warning, it may differ from "your" opinion. If so, please do not feel insulted, just state your own if you wish. Any data in this post is provided 'as is' and in no event shall I be liable for any damages, including, without limitation, damages resulting from accuracy or lack thereof, insult, or any other damages

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(bubba @ Feb. 19 2008,09:03)

QUOTE
Jim, I read a very informative article in the Texas Palm Society materials,which chronical the Freezes in the RGV.The article notes that the problem presented by the Texas freezes results out of their long-term nature.By this,I mean the freezes duration exceeding 3 full days below freezing.This was suprising and definitely a point of separation from Florida.

Also the Article listed the all-time low of Brownsville at 12F.,Laredo 5F and Houston 5F.

bubba is right it is for these very cold lows in south texas it is not like florida. i go to south texas 4 times - mcallen edinberg and the other cities in the valley. i never see very old roystonea or cocos nucifera there. maybe you can grow these for 10-15 years but one day a big freeze kill all of them.

to see many very old roystonea and cocos nucifera by the west gulf of mexico is starting in south tamaulipas state north of tampico about 23 degrees north.

TEMP. JAN. 21/10 C (69/50 F), AUG. 29/20 C (84/68 F). DESERT BY OCEAN SUNNY DRY. RAIN: 220 MM (8.66 INCHS). BY OCEAN ZONE 11 NO FREEZES.

5845d02ceb988_3-copia.jpg.447ccc2a7cc4c6

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(Cristóbal @ Feb. 19 2008,16:50)

QUOTE

(bubba @ Feb. 19 2008,09:03)

QUOTE
Jim, I read a very informative article in the Texas Palm Society materials,which chronical the Freezes in the RGV.The article notes that the problem presented by the Texas freezes results out of their long-term nature.By this,I mean the freezes duration exceeding 3 full days below freezing.This was suprising and definitely a point of separation from Florida.

Also the Article listed the all-time low of Brownsville at 12F.,Laredo 5F and Houston 5F.

bubba is right it is for these very cold lows in south texas it is not like florida. i go to south texas 4 times - mcallen edinberg and the other cities in the valley. i never see very old roystonea or cocos nucifera there. maybe you can grow these for 10-15 years but one day a big freeze kill all of them.

to see many very old roystonea and cocos nucifera by the west gulf of mexico is starting in south tamaulipas state north of tampico about 23 degrees north.

You're right, but the Roystonea can sure get huge in the mean time.  There are large royals as far north as Galveston, hundred of miles up the Texas coast from the RGV.

The low of 12 was in 1899, and most sites don't carry that low, I don't think that is an official low, or it was before official recordkeeping.  Most sites show 15.

Bubba, I'd be interested to see where the RGV stayed below freezing for 3 days.  A day maybe in the worst freeze, but I can't see 3 days.

In the 83/89 freezes, it didn't stay below freezing for 3 days, althoug it barely got above freezing for 2-3 days, that might be what you are thinking of, and these were the worst freezes since the late 1800s.  I think this is the article you are referring to by Richard Travis.

http://www.raingardens.com/psst/articles/artic03.htm

These temps were really no worse than Central FL which also got down into the upper teens.  A large number of queens were killed in Orlando, so that tells you how cold it got.

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Jim, Richard Travis's article is exactly what I was referring to.The issue presented in my mind is how quickly the temperature remained below or close to below freezing in Central Florida vs.RGV.I think we need to check into this because rebound I believe plays a major role in a Tropicals survival in fringe areas.

Steve,Well just how big a boy are you?Thank you and need more!

Cristobal,I always wondered where Carribean Mexico became Tropical.

What you look for is what is looking

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Couple points, when I compare the RGV to the Central FL corridor (I-4 corridor), I am talking mainly about Tampa, Brandon, Lakeland, Winter Haven, to Orlando.  NOT St Pete or Melbourne.  I realize those areas are possibly slightly warmer, although right on SPI can hold it's own to more coastal areas of FL.  I also lived in Brandon FL for 5 years and worked in Tampa, before moving to TX, so I am well aware of what grows along I-4 there, and have lived in SA for 4 yrs and been to SPI/RGV.  So seen both areas firsthand.

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It wasn't just Texas in the 89 freeze.  Here's a little tidbit about FL.  They got it too.  Low was in the teens in Orlando and only got to barely above freezing, one site said high was 37F.

http://www.srh.noaa.gov/tlh/topevents/

Cold Spell/Hard Freeze - Statewide, December 22-25, 1989

A cold outbreak and hard freeze affected all 67 counties in Florida. Many daily and some monthly and all-time low temperature records were tied or broken. Low temperatures were in the teens in north and north central Florida and in the 20s the central and south central parts of the state. Snow and sleet fell as far south as a Sarasota to Melbourne line, with a maximum of two to three inches in the panhandle. Northeast Florida experienced its first white Christmas in recorded history and airports and interstates were closed. Many traffic accidents and several fatalities occurred on ice-covered roads in North Florida. At least six people died of hypothermia and another four in space-heater related fires. Extensive crop damage, including a loss of about 30% of the $1.4 billion citrus crop, left tens of thousands of migrant farm workers unemployed. Winter vegetables, berries, nursery ornamentals and fish suffered heavy losses. Power blackouts hit hundreds of thousands of residents at various times during the holiday weekend.

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and 19 january 1977 when in all of florida except florida keys theres snow. for this you cant say south florida has true tropical climate. its semi-tropical.

SNOW IN MIAMI

TEMP. JAN. 21/10 C (69/50 F), AUG. 29/20 C (84/68 F). DESERT BY OCEAN SUNNY DRY. RAIN: 220 MM (8.66 INCHS). BY OCEAN ZONE 11 NO FREEZES.

5845d02ceb988_3-copia.jpg.447ccc2a7cc4c6

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LOL, how did I miss this thread?

So much to respond to. Yes the freeze of 1899 was extremely severe in TX and probably a 300-500 year event. The hardest freeze on the FL peninsula was probably Feb 1835, when the HIGH in St Augustine was reportedly 21 the coldest afternoon. The single digit readings seen around Laredo and Rio Grande City apparently did happen in 1899 and have not been challenged since. Oddly Port Isabel was warmer in 1899 (20F) than 1989 (18F), though neither record could be considered scientifically rigorous. Again all of these are old records which may not be reliable and with the general warming trend seen lately may well not be repeated in our lifetime. Aside from the 1899 fiasco the city of Brownsville has only experienced temps below 20F was 1989, there was a reading of 19F in 1962 which was extremely brief and there are conflicting reports about the minima in the 1880-1 freeze, the 3rd hardest in the region

As far as freezing temperatures in South Texas, yes it does tend to stay below freezing for longer periods than in comparable regions in Central Florida. Much of this is due to overrunning which keeps conditions cloudy, a rarity in Florida freezes. Overall it is probably slightly beneficial since it props up the absolute minimum a bit. There are a few freezes in South Texas which are clear most of the time but they are very rare. The fact that the citrus industry in Texas is still going in the southern counties is testament to the area's overall mildness (actually the Laredo-Rio Grande City area would probably be better for winter tolerance since they get some hardening out there, it's more of a soil and water issue out there)

I still stand by my assertion that the McAllen-Brownsville area is most comparable to the immediate coast of Volusia County in Florida WRT winter minima over the long run. This part of Florida is protected from the pesky smaller freezes which can affect the inland parts of the peninsula (even way south) but it's far enough north to really feel the effects of the monster cold outbreaks. Even using Orlando as a analog region is probably not the best since it tends to have more freezing years even though the very worst winters may be slightly warmer. Overall though that's rather petty and whatever can be grown in the Tampa-Orlando-Daytona area will work in McAllen-Brownsville area if winter temps are the main concern.

The freeze of 1989 in Daytona was a classic version of what you can see in a bad freeze in Brownsville or McAllen: afternoon temps below freezing and the mid-20s by sunset dropping to low 20s the next morning. They even had sleet and cloudy weather.  Another reason I like the analogy to coastal Volusia is that what has actually survived there is very very similar to what you see made it in Brownsville and McAllen through the '80s: most queen palms and a number of old scarred W. robusta were lost but in collections there were some surprising survivors: Livistona decipiens and hardy saribus, Acrocomia totai, Sabal causiarum and domingensis, Attalea cohune, xButyagrus and a few others. Most Phoenix reclinata and Acoelorraphe ended up freezing to the ground though it generally took several times for them to go all the way down.

I did have the chance to visit Dent Smith's place and Daytona in 1988 and 1990 and have a pretty good idea of what all can make it in the long run. What is still there and what is missing from his place and other collectors in the area speaks volumes about what we can expect in the long-term hardiness of certain palms (Hyphaene yes Bismarkia no). With southside protection it may also be possible to get away long-term with some rather tender palms both here and in central FL. There was a Sabal mauritiiformis, for instance, that survived in Brownsville on the south side of a two-story building, and royals and other tender palms that were wrapped with insulation actually survived the '89 freeze.

As for South Padre, it does get almost as cold as the mainland in a long freeze, the effect of the water just buys you a little more time that's it. The abscence of coconuts there has more to do with their lack of availability here than anything else (can't bring them un from Florida so where else do you get big ones? Ones planted after 1989 have survived to this day).

As for the western Gulf, the '89 freeze pretty much set the boundary for what is the northernmost limit for hardiness in Tamaulipas. I did get to travel to Cd Victoria and Soto la Marina areas in the summer of 1990. There were no noticeably large royals or coconuts in Soto in 1989, but in Victoria there were some old (if rather protected) royals that survived north of town. The hardiness line for coconuts seems to be around Llera near the mountains and somewhere north of Aldama near the coast. There is a range of low hills north of Aldama that seems to get colder than the lowlands. There is an old estate north of Aldama that had many royal palms on it and about 60% were killed in 1989. This is south of the tropic. On the coast, no old coconuts were noticed in La Pesca or Tepeguaje but they are present around Barra del Tordo. Probably Rancho Viejo is the limit. Topography complicates things a little in Tamps unlike Florida. Needless to say by the time you get to Barra del Tordo on the coast and south it's really tropical, the native vegetation bears this out. One odd thing is the presence of some large old coconuts in Jimenez Tamps, well north of where coconuts should have survived. I suspect they somehow protected them in '89

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I am both flattered and honored. Got to go with a Florida truism "Sometimes you have to lay out a great deal of BS to get the Big Bull out of the woods".Richard Travis's information is absolutely on point.Of greatest interest to me is the information regarding the Climate of the Northern Carribean region of Mexico.I had no idea that these freezes extended that far South so as to even effect Tropicals near the true Tropics(ie 23 degrees latitude).I think Cristobal hinted at this.Thank you very much Mr. Travis!

What you look for is what is looking

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Hello Jim,

Please remember that the Tampa metro area has multiple zones.  Climatically speaking, my peninsular section of Tampa strongly resembles the Pinellas Peninisula.  It's one town that cannot be painted with a broad brush.  Brandon and Temple Terrace are iceboxes compared to my garden.  I'm just reiterating what I'm sure you already know.

Ray

Tampa, Interbay Peninsula, Florida, USA

subtropical USDA Zone 10A

Bokeelia, Pine Island, Florida, USA

subtropical USDA Zone 10B

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(richtrav @ Feb. 20 2008,03:23)

QUOTE
Yes the freeze of 1899 was extremely severe in TX and probably a 300-500 year event.

I saw this posted on another website and thought it applicable here.  Heres a good map re: the 1899 freeze----

extmap_pg.gif

And heres the accompanying article---

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa....99.html

Larry 

Palm Harbor, FL 10a / Ft Myers, FL 10b

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(Ray @ Tampa,Feb. 20 2008,08:03)

QUOTE
Hello Jim,

Please remember that the Tampa metro area has multiple zones.  Climatically speaking, my peninsular section of Tampa strongly resembles the Pinellas Peninisula.  It's one town that cannot be painted with a broad brush.  Brandon and Temple Terrace are iceboxes compared to my garden.  I'm just reiterating what I'm sure you already know.

Ray

You're right, I did generalize a little.  I realize Interbay peninsula is warmer than the reast of Hillsborough.  When I lived in Brandon, I actually worked on interbay peninsula and would take Bayshore Blvd on my way to work everyday, or pay the toll on the crosstown expy.  My point was only to counteract what I saw as generalizations about S. TX, IMO making it seem colder than it really is.  I think some would have you to believe S TX is as cold as, for example, Gainesville or Jacksonville, and that's simply not true.

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Here's a question for you Floridians. (I can't remember from my days there).  Where is the line at for the citrus industry at which citrus are reliably commercially grown.  The citrus industry is alive and well in S TX so that would be a fair comparison as well.

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Jim,I have attempted to compare the severe freezes experienced in RGV and Central Florida in 1983 and 1989 to get a perspective.This should provide some comparison between the nature of freezes experienced in these regions.

According to Rich Travis's article,The Dec. 1983 freeze saw below freezing temperatures for a minimum of 48 straight hours.The respective lows 0n Dec.24-26, of 24,21and 28.

In comparison,two locations in Central Florida during the 1983 freeze(Daytona and Bartow)had the following High/Low temperatures from Dec.24-27:Daytona-60/34;33/19;39/19;64/30; Bartow-71/50;51/24;47/22;66/39.

According to Rich Travis's article,the 1989 freeze in the RGV experienced atleast 54 straight hours below freezing.The low temperatures for Dec 22-24 were 24,17 and 18.

In Central Florida in 1989,Daytona and Bartow experienced the following High/Lows from Dec.22-26:Daytona-48/42;46/23;37/21;48/25 and 59/33; Bartow-50/46;46/33;43/22;63/44.

The greatest distinction between RGV and Central Florida was the lack of lengthty straight hours in Central Florida consecutively below freezing.I would attribute this to the effect of the Gulf,Ocean and large number of Lakes,which moderate temperatures.You can also see the relatively quick bounce in temperatures post freeze. Your comments.

What you look for is what is looking

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