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UK Worst Freeze Since 2010


Foxpalms

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The Polar vortex is sending freezing air towards the UK creating a cold setup quite possibly worse than the 2010 freeze.  All the air from the arctic is being funneled down onto us. We are under clear skies all night tonight the temperature in London is slowly dropping whilst the countryside and the outskirts are plummeting in temperature. This freeze has practically appeared out of nowhere after a long hot summer and warm autumn/fall. It was supposed to be just above freezing however the last week the forecast got worse and worse until we ended up with this, an arctic air mass and clear skies at night. This is the worst possible scenario whilst snow might also be bad the cloud cover caused by that would stop it from becoming as cold so in my opinion this is worse. Day time highs aren't partially warm either struggling to get warm up at this latitude.

Edited by Foxpalms
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Baton down the hatches, cover up, and move pots if possible UK palm-friends! Hope you and your palm collections get through undamaged.  If in doubt, better to be safe than sorry.

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Its currently 00.12 am and parts of Central London are currently sill above freezing whilst some parts of even far southwest Cornwall are below freezing currently. The rest of the UK looks very cold even costal areas. The Scottish mountains later this week will be going down to -13c. So far it look like the CIDS and washingtonia will be safe in London including the colder outskirts. The freeze will be definitely also be a good test towards archontophoenix and syagrus long term viability in central London.

London worst freeze 1.jpg

Screenshot 2022-12-10 000642.jpg

UK FREEZE 1.jpg

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25 minutes ago, Phil Petersen said:

Baton down the hatches, cover up, and move pots if possible UK palm-friends! Hope you and your palm collections get through undamaged.  If in doubt, better to be safe than sorry.

Hopefully, it shouldn't be too bad here but the people outside any urban heat island or away from the sea are going to get hit very badly by this freeze.

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Sounds like a nasty one, hope your urban heat island effect keeps the damage away.  All the best. How's the predicted energy crises holding up? Are you all keeping warm?

 

I read EPS site occaisonally and I had  noticed the last few weeks several members were talking about reliable global warming and Southern UK becoming like Southern Portugal, then a rather abrupt change to "record breaking cold". The contrast between the two extremes will probably do more damage than the cold itself, most temperate-adjusted plants perform better when they have a gradual hardening off not a shock change from warm to cold.

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Waimarama New Zealand (39.5S, 177E)

Oceanic temperate

summer 25C/15C

winter 15C/6C

No frost, no heat

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@Foxpalms Hope everything holds up over there.  Any mention of 2010 gives us Floridians flashbacks.

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Lakeland, FL

USDA Zone (2012): 9b | Sunset Zone: 26 | Record Low: 20F/-6.67C (1985, 1962) | Record Low USDA Zone: 9a | 30-Year Avg. Low: 30F | 30-year Min: 24F

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7 minutes ago, kinzyjr said:

@Foxpalms Hope everything holds up over there.  Any mention of 2010 gives us Floridians flashbacks.

Was the FL 2010 freeze the same dates as the one in Europe? If this freeze is the worst in years and London stays as mild as the forecast here is suggesting I think the long term viability of queen and king palms here will pretty much be confirmed especially since its slowly getting warmer every year. The people growing palms in the countryside are really going to feel the effects of this freeze.

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@Foxpalms

There were actually two fairly bad freezes here in 2010.  The cold snap in January lasted from Jan. 3rd through the 15th, with the 9th and 10th being the worst days in most areas.  There were multiple cold snaps in December of that year, with the cold snap from December 27th through the 30th being the worst in most areas.

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Lakeland, FL

USDA Zone (2012): 9b | Sunset Zone: 26 | Record Low: 20F/-6.67C (1985, 1962) | Record Low USDA Zone: 9a | 30-Year Avg. Low: 30F | 30-year Min: 24F

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35 minutes ago, Bennz said:

Sounds like a nasty one, hope your urban heat island effect keeps the damage away.  All the best. How's the predicted energy crises holding up? Are you all keeping warm?

 

I read EPS site occaisonally and I had  noticed the last few weeks several members were talking about reliable global warming and Southern UK becoming like Southern Portugal, then a rather abrupt change to "record breaking cold". The contrast between the two extremes will probably do more damage than the cold itself, most temperate-adjusted plants perform better when they have a gradual hardening off not a shock change from warm to cold.

So far its still above freezing in the warmest parts of London and I'm currently sitting at 0c at 1am. The energy crisis is bad but it could be worse, it hasn't been too bad for the last 2 weeks since only 3 weeks ago we even got up to 20c. This has appeared out of nowhere I don't think this will have anything to do with how cold the rest of winter is here as up until this point it was way above average. But saying that the past few years except 2021 its been way above average so the long term data averages here are pretty outdated. The summer was so hot it made it so this year was a csa not even csb. Whilst the forecast is suggesting only 3 or 4c warm up after the freeze during the day I can guarantee it will be higher than that especially on the sunny days. The only good thing I see coming out of this freeze is if this is the worst possible scenario and we only get to -1c or even -2c there is no way frost tender 9b palms are getting killed in London especially in the future and on normal years. I think I'm probably going to plant out the archontophoenix alexandrae, archontophoenix myolensis and archontophoenix maxima next year in a protected spot. My alexandrae is still outside I will be watching the temperature closely to see whether to bring it in or not, it is near the house though so its slightly warmer there.

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Mate, I like winter here because I like the cool change but I don't think I'd like the sort of temps you poor buggers are getting. Best of British to you mate, I hope your palms are OK, it'll be interesting to see how they cope, I suppose the only positive way to look at the situation is to view it as an experiment, if they can survive these temps they must be pretty bloody tough. 

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45 minutes ago, sandgroper said:

Mate, I like winter here because I like the cool change but I don't think I'd like the sort of temps you poor buggers are getting. Best of British to you mate, I hope your palms are OK, it'll be interesting to see how they cope, I suppose the only positive way to look at the situation is to view it as an experiment, if they can survive these temps they must be pretty bloody tough. 

Yes this freeze is the coldest since the 2010 freeze. So far the king palm doesn't look too bad yesterday was a very light frost in colder parts of the garden but I didn't see any on the king palm. Tonight is definitely colder the weather station is at 29.5f and it's 6am. Saying that if it's the worst freeze event since 2010, if not as bad or worse, and it stays above 29f that's warmer than even parts of central southern Florida during their worst event. So I'm not complaining too much, central London is ridiculously mild for 51N but go a few miles out the urban heat island and it's -6c. Where UK palms is the weather station there has gone down to 19.9f and there's still a few hours left off cooling. One thing I can say is whilst my crownshafted palms may not be particularly cold hardy they are certainly very cool hardy. The warmest part of London is currently still above freezing even the south coast right next to the sea is colder. I see the forecast tomorrow changed to clear skies as well so it may get even colder tomorrow night probably somewhere between -1c to -2c in the coldest part of the garden. Winter at 51n is definitely my least favourite season but it could be worse places elsewhere at the same latitude as here are currently -30c. Do you or does anyone know how cold hardy laccospadix australasica are? I'm thinking about trying one in the warmer part of my garden which is sitting at 31f right now I'm pretty sure that microclimate is a 10a.

 

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Laccospadix seems pretty close to Howea in cold tolerance, city heat island effect may well be enough for them to thrive there..  Cool tolerance is the thing for those of us outside the warm zones, the problem comes if you get extended weather close to zero which does not happen here in NZ and Austrlia. I hope your crownshaft palms survive and thrive, they are certainly better to look at than Trachycarpus!

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Waimarama New Zealand (39.5S, 177E)

Oceanic temperate

summer 25C/15C

winter 15C/6C

No frost, no heat

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30 minutes ago, Bennz said:

Laccospadix seems pretty close to Howea in cold tolerance, city heat island effect may well be enough for them to thrive there..  Cool tolerance is the thing for those of us outside the warm zones, the problem comes if you get extended weather close to zero which does not happen here in NZ and Austrlia. I hope your crownshaft palms survive and thrive, they are certainly better to look at than Trachycarpus!

That's good to here howea are fine here. Trachycarpus are getting less common in London these days compared to other palms. CIDPS and chamaerops humilis are by far the most common palms here. Even yucca gigantea is slowly catching up to the cordyline population in central London, but that will be hard to overtake since cordylines are everywhere. I wish more people would plant the nice cordylines like fruticosa more often here than the cold hardy ones since they do well. Here the weather always rises above freezing after a freeze but since this is one of the worst freeze events not by a lot. During a normal winter after a light freeze the temperature during the day usually rises between 6-10c here. The fact it even rises above freezing is amazing after a freeze since the sun is extremely weak at this time of the year in London. We have crystal clear skies today and the max UV is a 0.5.

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Here are the current temperatures at 7.50am just before the sun comes up. Cornwall was cloudy last night so the temperature rose above freezing there along the coast I wonder how my king palm is doing there. The scilly isles are very mild still despite the arctic air mass. Even down at 44n along the Atlantic coast of France the temperature is colder than central London. There are a few weather stations in central London that didn't drop below freezing last night in the warmest spots. My low in the coldest part of the garden was 29.5f/-1.3c.

London freeze temps 2.jpg

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uk freeze scilly.jpg

uk freeze europe.jpg

uk freeze france coast atlantic .jpg

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21 hours ago, Foxpalms said:

. Do you or does anyone know how cold hardy laccospadix australasica are? I'm thinking about trying one in the warmer part of my garden which is sitting at 31f right now I'm pretty sure that microclimate is a 10a.

 

Mate I couldn't tell you, we're pretty lucky with our climate so I don't generally worry too much about whether something is cold hardy as for most of the plants I grow they're fine apart from the coconut which needed a bit of looking after in the cool months. 

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-1.2c was the low last night it looks like the whole south east except central London and the along the coast have freezing fog. There's a small amount of frost in parts of the garden whilst other parts are frost free. I saw some photos of gardens outside any Urban heat island or ocean influence climates and it looks bad. Everything just looks white from frost I'm glad it doesnt look like that here.

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It looks like the freeze will finally end next weekend and the temperatures will return back to normal.

Screenshot_20221211-120438993 (1).jpg

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I was in the UK before moving to Portugal 18 months back. The freezing weather of Feb 2018 was much colder than anything currently being seen. Also there was cold weather in the winter months of 2013 that was at least as cold if not colder than the present cold weather in the UK. As for 2009 and 2010 winters, they were far far colder than anything at present. The 2010 winter was remarkable because the deep cold came at the end of November and lasted for weeks. Nothing indicated in the UK at the moment is anything like that and there are suggestions from forecasts that warmer weather my come by next weekend. It is a fairly long moderate cold spell for sure, but perspective is everything and it is not in the least historic in any way.

Here in Portugal it is quite different to the UK. Much warmer (close to 20C today) but there is a lot of rain around and quite a strong breeze blowing from the Atlantic.

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33 minutes ago, petiole10 said:

I was in the UK before moving to Portugal 18 months back. The freezing weather of Feb 2018 was much colder than anything currently being seen. Also there was cold weather in the winter months of 2013 that was at least as cold if not colder than the present cold weather in the UK. As for 2009 and 2010 winters, they were far far colder than anything at present. The 2010 winter was remarkable because the deep cold came at the end of November and lasted for weeks. Nothing indicated in the UK at the moment is anything like that and there are suggestions from forecasts that warmer weather my come by next weekend. It is a fairly long moderate cold spell for sure, but perspective is everything and it not in the least historic in any way.

Here in Portugal it is quite different to the UK. Much warmer (close to 20C today) but there is a lot of rain around and quite a strong breeze blowing from the Atlantic.

Yes but in 2018 whilst there was much more snow the temperatures escpially inland due to all the snow and clouds, meant it wasn't as cold. Some places have gone down to -10c inland in southern England  due to the arctic air mass and clear skies and not much warm up during the day. The length of this freeze is also much longer than the 2018 freeze. The reason I said since 2010 is depending of where you live it could be better or worse than 2010. 2010 was much longer than this freeze and there was snow, however certain places during this freeze have still gotten colder than 2010. People often associate widespread snow as a bad freeze and whilst there hasn't been any here there has been plenty across the UK. Even parts of far south west cornwall have gotten snow which did not happen at all during 2018.  There's a large portion of the country today that won't even rise above freezing in the south. The thing with this freeze though is you couldn't get a colder setup than this and yet where I am it's still rising above freezing in the day, plus it's only dropping to around to high 9b temperatures at night. Duration wise, sure it could last longer or snow more to make it worse but temperature wise at night parts have already recorded lower temperature than 2010. It has definitely been worse than 2018 or 2013 but 2010 for most places will be worse.

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31 minutes ago, Foxpalms said:

Yes but in 2018 whilst there was much more snow the temperatures escpially inland due to all the snow and clouds, meant it wasn't as cold. Some places have gone down to -10c inland in southern England  due to the arctic air mass and clear skies and not much warm up during the day. The length of this freeze is also much longer than the 2018 freeze. The reason I said since 2010 is depending of where you live it could be better or worse than 2010. 2010 was much longer than this freeze and there was snow, however certain places during this freeze have still gotten colder than 2010. People often associate widespread snow as a bad freeze and whilst there hasn't been any here there has been plenty across the UK. Even parts of far south west cornwall have gotten snow which did not happen at all during 2018.  There's a large portion of the country today that won't even rise above freezing in the south. The thing with this freeze though is you couldn't get a colder setup than thisand yet where I am it's still rising above freezing in the day, plus it's  only dropping to around to high 9b temperatures at night. Duration wise, sure it could last longer or snow more to make it worse but temperature wise at night parts have already recorded lower temperature than 2010.

I lived on the south coast and maximums during the Feb 2018 spell stayed well below freezing for several days as well as the night-times.  Indeed I saw frozen water pipes and a day long power cut.  During that last week of February and beginning of March maximums between -2C and -4C were recorded on consecutive days in southern england, let alone further north. This is nowhere near happening at present.

As for 2010. There is even less comparison The airmass, same as 2018 was deep, deep cold. Much colder than at present with periods of a week at a time with consecutive sub zero days and nights. Maximums in the current spell in the UK are rising at least a degree or two above freezing during the day in quite a few places. My friend back in the UK is saying that she has seen rain and sleet today and at no time was this the case in the other cold spells which saw deep powder snow.

Sorry, but I think there is simply no viable comparison at all.

This link from the UK Met office puts the present UK cold spell into perspective. In their own words saying it is nothing unusual for the time of year. Both the other spells were exceptional cold weather that were much more intense and unusual Values of -10C are not uncommon in certain prone frost hollows during long clear nights in cold air regimes. Much more telling is the relative recovery above freezing during the day - away from places that stay foggy for example.

Cold weather to continue - Met Office

 

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1 hour ago, petiole10 said:

I lived on the south coast and maximums during the Feb 2018 spell stayed well below freezing for several days as well as the night-times.  Indeed I saw frozen water pipes and a day long power cut.  During that last week of February and beginning of March maximums between -2C and -4C were recorded on consecutive days in southern england, let alone further north. This is nowhere near happening at present.

As for 2010. There is even less comparison The airmass, same as 2018 was deep, deep cold. Much colder than at present with periods of a week at a time with consecutive sub zero days and nights. Maximums in the current spell in the UK are rising at least a degree or two above freezing during the day in quite a few places. My friend back in the UK is saying that she has seen rain and sleet today and at no time was this the case in the other cold spells which saw deep powder snow.

Sorry, but I think there is simply no viable comparison at all.

This link from the UK Met office puts the present UK cold spell into perspective. In their own words saying it is nothing unusual for the time of year. Both the other spells were exceptional cold weather that were much more intense and unusual Values of -10C are not uncommon in certain prone frost hollows during long clear nights in cold air regimes. Much more telling is the relative recovery above freezing during the day - away from places that stay foggy for example.

Cold weather to continue - Met Office

 

The 850 hPa isotherms were at -10c during this freeze whilst in certain areas during the 2018 freeze it was much colder during the day at night it was warmer, since the sky wasn't clear all night instead it was cloudy. Which part of the south coast did you live in and how far from the coast?.Since I can't find a single wundergound station within a mile of the sea that had a daytime high temperature in 2018 of -4c. In some spots I've seen towns near the south coast go down to -6 to -7c even in non frost hollow areas. This is not a normal winter freeze for the UK normal winters are much milder than this. Bournemouth airport got down to -9c.

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The Norfolk Island pine in London is completely undamaged by the freeze but what's even more interesting is the fact the bougainvillea is completely undamaged and still has it's flowers. @UK_Palms I haven't seen the bougainvillea in east London but by going off the fact it's a more hardy variety, even if it got colder there I'm guessing that it's probably fine.

 

 

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21 hours ago, Matthew92 said:

 

 

It is interesting reading the responses to this guy and rather puts in perspective that he appears to not be anyone to take too seriously. based on a view that he is sensationalist.   Comparisons are best made when a spell of weather has finished, not attempted to be extrapolated ahead based on individual computer predictions taken at face value.

 

23 hours ago, Foxpalms said:

The 850 hPa isotherms were at -10c during this freeze whilst in certain areas during the 2018 freeze it was much colder during the day at night it was warmer, since the sky wasn't clear all night instead it was cloudy. Which part of the south coast did you live in and how far from the coast?.Since I can't find a single wundergound station within a mile of the sea that had a daytime high temperature in 2018 of -4c. In some spots I've seen towns near the south coast go down to -6 to -7c even in non frost hollow areas. This is not a normal winter freeze for the UK normal winters are much milder than this. Bournemouth airport got down to -9c.

I lived about half a mile from the seafront between Eastbourne, Bexhill and Battle.

This is an extract from  that spell in late Feb 2018 from nearby Hastings. Sub zero both day and night. This would be right on the coast, so lower still a very short distance inland. as I can confirm living there. Records are not available for every village. 

Hastings, East Sussex, GB Historical Weather Almanac (worldweatheronline.com)

Someone clever with weather maps found me images from the 2018 freeze to compare against the current cold spell in the UK. Much deeper cold air from those blue shades than at present

CFSR_1_2018022818_2.pngCFSR_1_2022120918_2.png

 

In context the present cold spell in the UK is not the deepest since 2010. The comparisons can be made properly when the month is completed and the average temperatures compared like for like.

Having googled the UK Met Office: As of 11th December 2022 the Central England Temperature average (CET) taken from the UK Met Office website is at +2.0C.   The benchmark to match the final figure for December 2010 is -0.7C

So whilst it is certainly cold, it is some way off Dec 2010 and with milder weather to come by next weekend it could well be that the final figure will be much less cold still. However, as stated, this is better reviewed at the end of the month and not by selected one week temperature anomaly snapshots.

 

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@petiole10 I have seen other gfs model which show blues not greens for now and dark blues a few days ago. 2018 Could of have been worse for some, however many places have gotten colder than they did during the 2018 freeze under clear skies. I had a look at weather stations around the area you used to live in, evidently its obviously not going to be exactly the same as what your previous locations readings were but it got down to -6c during this freeze. The records for Bexhill show that it didn't get as cold at night as it did during this freeze in 2018 however there was 1 day that the temperature did not rise above freezing. I have family near there in Eastbourne in land by a few miles, which would be a colder location then where you were, that didn't see temperatures as cold as you are suggesting in 2018 and saw -7.2c one night during this freeze. Secondly this freeze is much more prolonged with lots of radiational frosts, 2018's freeze only lasted a few days. At least for London I would agree that 2010 was worse but there are still areas recording lower temperatures than they did in 2010.  A few places have broken their record lows. The worst freeze since 2010 means since 2010, not that it was colder. I'm sure the average temperature of this December will be lower than it was during months of the 2018 freeze, this has lasted much longer. This week there will be multiple days of radiational frosts again. Whether or not its worse than the 2010 completely depends on where exactly in the UK you live, some people will have seen lower minimum temperatures than 2010, but not a lower average temperature for the month.  

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This is an absolute joke here. I have experienced my coldest early December temperatures in over 300 years since the early 1700's or mid-1600's here. Relevant to the modern day Met Office records (circa 1940's) 4 of the past 5 nights have been the coldest EVER on record for the time of year. We have broken the record low temperature here for the 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th of December. I also have to go back to 1658 for the last time that my area saw 5 consecutive nights below -5C / 23F before 14th December.

It's just brutal radiation freeze after radiation freeze under the clear skies, with a -8C to -10C 850 hPa isotherm sitting over us, which is also a new isotherm record for the date(s) too. The average temperature here is also at its lowest ever on record for the first 10 days of December in my area. The central England Temperature series (CET) is the 2nd lowest on record for first 10 days of December and even lower than 2010. This is going to be my worst ever 'early' December freeze on record here now. 

My low on Friday night was -7.5C / 18F and it was still -7C / 19F at 9am on Saturday morning with little hope for daytime recovery.

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Daytime recovery did go into complete overdrive however with 11C / 20F+ of solar heating here between 9am - 2pm. That is significant given that I am at 51N and the solar minimum (winter solstice) is just 11 days away now. That is almost like a New Mexico style recovery there. Most stuff had thawed out in the sun by 2pm.

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The back to back radiation frosts have thoroughly frozen everything in my garden now however. These photos were taken at midday on Sunday.

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This is an apple believe it or not, which was sitting in a shaded spot in my back yard & covered in frost at 2pm over the weekend.

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Over the past 36 hours temperatures have stayed in the 0C to -2C range, so no extreme radiational freezes due to cloud cover. It's really surprising to see just how much milder the Isles of Scilly really are during this event. They still haven't gone below about 3-4C / 39F there. When I was around 0C / 32F here during the day, it was 8C / 46F in the Scilly Isles. It's a whole different climate over there. Subtropical, given that they are technically being effected by this arctic blast as well.

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Unbelievably London and Kent experienced a significant snowfall event last night. I missed it here, but it seems that even central London got quite a decent amount of snow too. This is the first December snowfall in London in 8 years, since 2014. So again it shows the significant nature of this cold event. Temperatures remained fairly mild last night however around 0C / 32F despite the snowfall. Much milder than in previous nights, especially in my area. Many parts of London with snow didn't go below -1C / 30F.

 

@Foxpalms Did you get much snow where you are mate? I didn't get anything at all here with the exception of a few flurries. Nothing measurable though.

 

I saw Dave Brown post this photo of his Filibusta weighed down by the snow in Kent. It's only a bit of cosmetic damage (his lowest was -4C / 25F) but it still looks quite nasty.

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@petiole10 I respectively suggest you don't lecture us on how cold this arctic blast is when you are living 1,500 miles away in southern Portugal and not actually experiencing it. We don't insist the heatwaves and droughts you experience over there are just 'normal' and not very bad, do we. So don't downplay this event and make out it is the norm for us here.

Today is provisionally the coldest day since 2010 in the UK with parts of Scotland not rising above -9.3C (15F). Tonight could also see the coldest overnight minima for 12 years as well. This is a significant freeze for the UK, given that December 2010 is the coldest month ever on record in places. -20C / -5F is expected in the Highlands of northern Scotland tonight.

 

At least mild westerlies should be arriving by Friday/Saturday now, which may take the temps back up to double digits, hopefully.

Edited by UK_Palms
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Dry-summer Oceanic climate (9a)

Average annual precipitation - 18.7 inches : Average annual sunshine hours - 1725

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Looks like you guys will be warming up just in time for the cold air to come back our way again. Can't the cold just hang out over the Prairie provinces and Siberia where it belongs?

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Zone 8b, Csb (Warm-summer Mediterranean climate). 1,940 annual sunshine hours 
Annual lows-> 19/20: -5.0C, 20/21: -5.5C, 21/22: -8.3C, 22/23: -9.4C, 23/24: 1.1C (so far!)

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While I appreciate the contributions of the folks from abroad to our Cold Hardiness Master Data, I'd be much happier if there was "nothing to report" :mellow:

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Lakeland, FL

USDA Zone (2012): 9b | Sunset Zone: 26 | Record Low: 20F/-6.67C (1985, 1962) | Record Low USDA Zone: 9a | 30-Year Avg. Low: 30F | 30-year Min: 24F

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@UK_Palms The snow wasn't too bad here it was much worse in the east London suburbs. Only a light dusting that managed to stick it the cold spots of the garden but it's all melted. It hasn't gone below freezing in the past 24hours here either I'm under clear skies tonight but it's still 0.9c now. If you saw the updated photos of the bougainvillea and Norfolk Island pine you can really put into perspective just how mild central London is. I am rooting for you're queen palms to survive, it would be really impressive if they managed to survive this. Mine is completely undamaged but could do with some potassium.

Edited by Foxpalms
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41 minutes ago, ShadyDan said:

Looks like you guys will be warming up just in time for the cold air to come back our way again. Can't the cold just hang out over the Prairie provinces and Siberia where it belongs?

For some reason the Pacific Northwest tends to be hot when we are cool and cold when we are mild, vise versa but not always. I saw some of the Pacific Northwest forecasts and they look very cold. So far it hasn't dropped below a high 9b temperature wise during one of the worst freezes herr in central London and some weather stations in particular warm microclimates haven't even gone below freezing so I think it's safe to say without a doubt that king and queen palms (especially cunninghamiana) are long term here and there are 10a parts of London. It would be nice if the cold air stayed where it's supposed to be and we only got winds from the south west! It would be nice if around the poles there was a 27,000ft mountain range incase the polar Jetstream breaks down temporarily so we never get events like this!

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50 minutes ago, kinzyjr said:

While I appreciate the contributions of the folks from abroad to our Cold Hardiness Master Data, I'd be much happier if there was "nothing to report" :mellow:

The kentia palms, nikaus, phoenix dactylifera, Sylvesteris, phoenix theophrasti, phoenix rupicola, chamedoreas, potted seedling Bismarckia, syagrus romanzoffianana, archontophoenix cunninghamiana and potted Alexandrae all look fine. I need to check on the other palms but it's dark at the moment. The only thing that got damaged was the Ensete banana that I dug up for spring because it's in the colder part of the garden and it got some minor frost damage one night and I don't want to risk loosing it.

Edited by Foxpalms
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4 hours ago, Foxpalms said:

@UK_Palms The snow wasn't too bad here it was much worse in the east London suburbs. Only a light dusting that managed to stick it the cold spots of the garden but it's all melted. It hasn't gone below freezing in the past 24hours here either I'm under clear skies tonight but it's still 0.9c now. If you saw the updated photos of the bougainvillea and Norfolk Island pine you can really put into perspective just how mild central London is. I am rooting for you're queen palms to survive, it would be really impressive if they managed to survive this. Mine is completely undamaged but could do with some potassium.

Last night was also the coldest night in the entire UK since January 2021 (22 months).

 

Isles of Scilly coming in with a mild 8.2C / 46F today despite the freeze affecting entire UK...

 

Before I moan about my current -4C temps here, Glasgow in Scotland is down to about -10C / 14F right now...

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Here is the coldest spot in the UK currently in Cairngorm NP in the Scottish highlands. It's down to about -17C / 0F looking at the nearby 'unofficial' stations.

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The north side of the Cairngorms are pretty cold as well, but I don't think there is a Met station out there.

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The whole of the UK is under the effect of this polar airmass, but some places are frost free still as I type this at 3am. While I am currently at -4.6C / 23F here, some places are significantly warmer. A lot of the south coast regions are around 0C / 32F now, but certain areas are protected with microclimates.

The Isles of Scilly, which is a no brainer. The mildest place in the British Isles. Currently holding out at 8C / 46F there at 3am despite the freeze. Subtropical. A staggering 13C / 25F warmer than my location currently.

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The far southwestern tip of Cornwall as well is looking fairly mild, unsurprisingly, particularly on the southerly side. 7C / 45F in Porthcurno at 3am. 6C / 43F in penzance and along most of the southerly coastline. The north coast of Cornwall is a different story (several degrees cooler) but still frost free.

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I'm surprised to see the Falmouth estuary in south-central Cornwall looking so mild as well. Temps holding up around 6-7C / 44F at 3am. The owner of Lamorran Garden at St Mawes (shown below) says they have had like one frost in 30 years there, supposedly. That's up for debate, but it is clearly pretty well protected tonight.

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Temps are also holding up in the Torquay - Paignton - Brixham region of Devon, right the way down to Salcombe. Definite microclimate in that section of the south coast.

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The southeast shores of the Isle of Wight, specifically between Sandown, Shanklin and Ventnor which also appears frost free. Sandown showing a balmy 5C / 42F, but lightly cooler towards Ventnor. Go 1-2 miles inland towards interior of island and you will face frost, but still nowhere near as bad as the mainland.

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The Eastbourne - Bexhill region of Sussex also just fending off a frost along the coastline. Again, if you go a mile or so inland and you are getting frost. Only the coastal area is protected there. This is another well-known microclimate area, although generally not quite as mild as the other ones I have posted.

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Swanage area of Dorset also holding out too it appears. Maybe by chance, although it is in a favourable spot though. It's frost-free there nonetheless tonight.

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Those are the mildest places in southern England during a severe freeze event like this when even London falls to freezing or below. The proof is in the pudding. The further west, the milder generally speaking. Portland just misses out, as does Southsea. While both places are normally protected and some of the mildest spots in the UK usually, those two places have still fallen to freezing, or below, tonight.

Edited by UK_Palms

Dry-summer Oceanic climate (9a)

Average annual precipitation - 18.7 inches : Average annual sunshine hours - 1725

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@UK_Palmsit's 32f/0c here in London. Southsea has actually been colder during this freeze I saw some weather stations there go down to -2c. Shanklin got colder than here one night but ventnor was warmer. Torquay also got colder one night however they seem to be milder tonight, probably because the south west has cloud and rain right now whilst we are under clear skies.

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I was about to suggest a B. Alfredii.... Until I got 'til the 15-18 post. Gonna go with Trachycarpus and Jubaea. 

Keep us apprised.  I would still give them some protection.

5 year high 42.2C/108F (07/06/2018)--5 year low 4.6C/40.3F (1/19/2023)--Lowest recent/current winter: 4.6C/40.3F (1/19/2023)

 

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9 hours ago, Foxpalms said:

@UK_Palmsit's 32f/0c here in London. Southsea has actually been colder during this freeze I saw some weather stations there go down to -2c. Shanklin got colder than here one night but ventnor was warmer. Torquay also got colder one night however they seem to be milder tonight, probably because the south west has cloud and rain right now whilst we are under clear skies.

Swings and roundabouts. Yes you can say it was due to cloud cover, but that also comes with the territory of being close to the coast and closer to the Atlantic. During these events they are more likely to get cloud cover. In fact London had cloud cover and snow on Sunday night, but the temperature still dropped down to about 0C / 32F or -1C / 30F even. Compare that to somewhere like Falmouth in Cornwall, which was holding out at 7C / 43F under the same conditions. Also Eastbourne didn't have cloud cover last night and was still holding up at 3C / 38F overnight. You can't just say it's due to cloud cover when there are obviously microclimates in those regions.

During this freeze, even the most protected areas of central/eastern London are seeing +1-2C / 35F highs and -1C / 30F lows. Possibly a bit lower even. In the grand scheme of things, that is still pretty mild with no real damaging temps, but it is still much cooler than other south coast regions. London is not even in the top 5 mildest parts of southern England during major freeze events. It's way more protected than most places, sure, but it's still not even close to some of the sheltered, coastal valleys of southern Cornwall, east Dorset and the southeast region of the Isle of Wight. The majority of London actually gets significantly colder than those places with only central London by the Thames remotely rivalling them.

Looking at the central London temps right now at 5pm. The warmest part of city is only holding out at about 2C / 36F right now. Most of the central area is close to 1C / 34C. The residual heat has been zapped out of the city mate due to how prolonged this freeze is. The difference between my location right now and warmest part of London is only about 3C / 6F.

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Compare that to the coastal parts of the Torquay-Paignton-Brixham area down to Salcombe in south Devon right now. They have a really good microclimate there in that area.

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Look at the Falmouth estuary region again in Cornwall, which I have already mentioned. It's running at 8C / 46F there right now, which is a solid 6C warmer than central London. It's basically the same temperature there as the Scilly Isles right now. Not sure how London competes with that in the mildness category. Well it doesn't.

2120662625_thumbnail_image0-2022-12-13T175410_071.thumb.jpg.c1e276ccbe3bfb50422726163455baff.jpg

Dry-summer Oceanic climate (9a)

Average annual precipitation - 18.7 inches : Average annual sunshine hours - 1725

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I saw that they had a new coldest temperature of the year, again at Braemar, something like -17ºC.  There are very few places in the UK where you couldn't grow a Trachycarpus, but that is one of them.

I had been almost as unconcerned as @Foxpalms about this until the last day or two, because I live in a fairly sheltered region with urban heat island too.  Being between the Pennines and the Irish Sea prevents Manchester from getting the worst cold, usually.  That is still the case this time, where most central urban areas have not gone below -3, and the outer suburbs have generally stayed above -5.  In this region, some of the most exposed and elevated places like the Cheshire Plain or the West Pennine Moors have gone to -8 or slightly lower.  I wouldn't normally be bothered about -2.7ºC (my coldest so far) if it weren't for us spending 20 hours a day below freezing some days (1.9ºC is the warmest temperature of the past week) - do you think it's a serious concern?  For the likes of Butia, Brahea, Washingtonia robusta, Phoenix canariensis, Cycas revoluta.

I had palms including Phoenix canariensis outside and unprotected in pots during 2018 and they had no issue at all, however the cold of 2018 was brief, if slightly sharper (-5ºC here, it was worse in the south).

I'm just grateful it's not like 2010 when it was -10ºC in central areas (the all-time record low).  If we had that I'd be covering the entire garden in a big sheet of plastic (small terraced house garden and young plants) and running a heater for 1-2 hours per day under it.

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Manchester, Lancashire, England

53.4ºN, 2.2ºW, 65m AMSL

Köppen climate Cfb | USDA hardiness zone 9a

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