JUST heard the winter forecast

earthlydelights(6 pushing 7)December 6, 2006

i'm in montgomery county just outside northeast philadelphia. the weathermen (and amy) of channel 10 news are hosting a weather survival guide (earthwatch 101 - surviving winter) special with a guide to this year's winter weather. if i heard right, this is going to be a much colder winter with more snow. glen "hurricane" schwartz is predicting a total of 30 to 40" this season with at least one 10" snow storm. he further noted we will have about 16 days with snow.

are you prepared?


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geoforce(z7a SE PA)

Well, maybe it'll be like the major hurricane season this year that they were predicting in early spring, A total mistake.

Still with all that, we have had a lot worse than 30-40" in the past, and I can remember several storms over the 38 years I've lived up here in PA that we had single snows of over 10" and up to 24-36". One of those was last year when a lot of us had a 15-18" snow, Feb 11-12 I believe.


    Bookmark   December 7, 2006 at 8:04AM
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Pipersville_Carol(z6 Bucks PA)

I've got a personal theory about predicting winter weather.

Whatever the December weather trend is, the rest of the winter is the opposite.

I'd been thinking this for years, but last year I really tried to remember my observations so I could check the theory. Sure enough, we had a very cold December and a very warm winter.

We seem to be having a typical December this year. Maybe a teeny bit colder than usual but it's early days yet.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2006 at 11:45AM
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gshann(Z6 PA ChesCo.)

Well, this is one of the warmer Decembers that I can remember!! I wonder if that forecast has changed at all...

    Bookmark   December 23, 2006 at 6:54PM
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Nancy18509(z5 NEPA)

Im in Scr. Pa. and the weather is great NO SNOW but my looking at my flower garden you would think its spring almost everything is comeing up. I even had blooms on my forsythia in the early part of DEC.
So my question is will I have flowers in the spring and summer be cause they are coming up now .

    Bookmark   December 31, 2006 at 12:52PM
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wolfe15136(z6 PA)

I'm worried. My roses are starting to leaf out and there are flower buds on the peach trees.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2007 at 10:07AM
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Pipersville_Carol(z6 Bucks PA)

And we're in for a nice warm week, from the sounds of it!

I had last week off, and was amazed at how much gardening I could still do, despite the late date. On New Years day I was digging in the ground, straightening/staking/pruning fruit trees. Very fun.

Wolfe, are your peach trees in a warmish location? My Reliant peach isn't budding at all yet.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2007 at 2:35PM
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chescobob(z6b SEPA)

I hope we get 2 more weeks of early Spring before any Winter so my daphne can finish blooming.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2007 at 4:44PM
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wolfe15136(z6 PA)

Isn't it wonderful. I like living in Atlanta, without the hot summers.

Carol, the peach trees are on the north side of my house, and are a bit sheltered thus. Don't your Reliants normally bloom later than most peaches? I would think that would make them more....welll....Reliable.

    Bookmark   January 3, 2007 at 1:32PM
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earthlydelights(6 pushing 7)

guess you can't believe what you hear, even if it is from the "experts". so far, so good...although maybe we are in for a frightful february? i'm still planting bulbs, although i can see so much green of already established bulbs popping. strange weather, but i'm not going to complain, i'm rather enjoying it.

happy new year!

    Bookmark   January 3, 2007 at 7:57PM
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Hi Maryanne---

So far it has been a really warm period.

I hope it snows a little before spring comes (I might have to eat my words)---LOL)


    Bookmark   January 20, 2007 at 12:41PM
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Pipersville_Carol(z6 Bucks PA)

Yes, I think late bloom is what makes the Reliant peach reliable :)

Hopefully I didn't kill mine by pruning it drastically in early January. It had about two weeks of warm weather afterwards to heal up. Warm winters are dangerous for a garden! I was outside, itching to prune something, and the poor fruit trees caught my eye.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2007 at 5:21PM
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naturenut_pa(z6 PA)

It looks like Carol's theory on winter weather is right on the money.
Just checked the forecast...below freezing for the rest of the week, which means this snow won't be going away anytime soon :(

Good grief, I hate cold weather, but without it, thoughts of spring wouldn't put butterflies in my stomach!

    Bookmark   February 5, 2007 at 12:24PM
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jenny_in_se_pa(USDA7 Sunset 32)

Update - warm up on the way! Just hang on a few more days. Phil was right but just a couple weeks off. LOL

I had hellbores blooming in January and a bunch of buds were swelling on my plum before the cold snaps hit. Will see how well (or not so well) those buds took the cold. Hellebores flopped and went into a frozen sleep.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2007 at 8:46PM
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earthlydelights(6 pushing 7)

i had carnations blooming right before the freeze, so i'm hoping for the best with them.

USDA7 Sunset 32 -- jenny can you explain your zone? (if you don't mind)


    Bookmark   February 18, 2007 at 11:33AM
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jenny_in_se_pa(USDA7 Sunset 32)

Maryanne - Sunset is a publisher that has focussed on home and garden magazines and books - but originally for the western states. They came up with a climate zone schema that they felt better reflected the microclimates and topology west of the Mississippi. Sunset basically ignored the USDA Zones and encouraged those in the west to do the same, as the USDA's Zones are based on the avg. lowest minimum temperatures, which they felt somehow accurately reflected the eastern climate. Of course that's silly because the USDA's Zone maps didn't take into account the different topology and microclimates east of the Mississippi either.... ;-) However topology and elevation are now being factored into the new USDA zone map (which is part of why it is taking so long to release). Note the soon to be released USDA map will not be the same as the new National Arbor Day Zone map.

In any case, by 2002, Sunset recently expanded their Zone designations to cover the entire U.S. "Sunset Zone 32" covers a good chunk of the northern Mid-Atlantic coastal plain climate.

You can find this area's Sunset Zones from here. The full clickable map is here.

Sunset published a "Northeastern Garden Book" that covers the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic (including PA) and it's a great garden book that very accurately describes this area and includes an encyclopedia of many of the popular plants grown here. I got mine at Home Depot!

    Bookmark   February 18, 2007 at 8:30PM
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westhighlandblue(z6 PA)


Your post was very helpful. I grew up in the Southwest, and "Sunset" is the first and last word, on gardening. (Which, by the way, has not stopped me from collecting no less than seven regional gardening books, some that have been helpful.)

I am THRILLED to learn that Sunset has published a book for our region. I'll be stopping at Home Depot on the way home.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2007 at 7:36AM
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