With the record warm spell last month and high sunshine totals you would think that the growing season is well under way. Spring bulbs have been out for weeks, trees are blossoming and many shrubs are on the verge of flushing.
But a look at the local temperature records over the last six years shows that things aren’t as advanced as previous seasons.
Considering the period from December 1st – in recent years a date when it is common to see bulb shoots beginning to emerge – to March 10th reveals the following table in terms of growing degree days.
The warm days of last month were cancelled out by cold, frosty nights, leading to little net warmth. And the last ‘growing degree-day’ was on March 2nd. Nevertheless growth is further on than last year that saw record cold in March.
The season is a long way behind 2015-16, however, which saw a record-breaking mild December.
Looking at the list below, and the at best average outlook, we’ve still got a way to go before we’ll see most trees in full leaf…