Favorite weather websites?

luckybottomJanuary 16, 2009

What are your favorite weather websites and why? Also, do any of you vegetable garden by the moon phases?

I have my hompage at igoogle and have google's weather added. It is great for a thumbnail look at the current conditions and seems to be pretty good at forcasts but has nothing as far as gardening (ie: history of temps and moisture or any moon info).

Thanks in advance for your thoughts,

Bonnie

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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

Hi Bonnie,

The only one I use for current weather is NOAA/NWS. IÂve never found anything that comes even close to matching its content and accuracy. And I love being able to check the current radarÂand to be able to loop it so see which way the weather is moving, and if itÂs increasing or decreasing. AND, since theyÂve added the little interactive map, you can accurately pinpoint even the tiniest little spot to see what the weather isÂlike Nederland! (Click on your part of the country, then click on your town/area, then localize it further with the interactive map.)

ThereÂs so much on the site that there must be historical data somewhere that could be used for gardening, but IÂve never taken the time to look for it. I garden pretty much by when I have time! No fancy science around here! Since past weather doesnÂt really tell you whatÂs gonna happen THIS YEARÂespecially in the Rocky Mountain region, I pretty much go with May 15 for planting out tender things. Most of the time it works! The only thing the moon has to do with my gardening is that IÂm usually out in the yard till the moon comes up! ;-)

I donÂt have time to live link them, but here are a couple other sites that have been posted by folks around hereÂmost likely by DIGIT!!!

Comparative Weather for the Western States
http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/htmlfiles/

NOAA U. S. Climate Page
http://www.cdc.noaa.gov/USclimate/

Try NOAA Â youÂll like it!
Skybird

Here is a link that might be useful: NOAA - National Weather Service

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 2:09PM
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dan_staley(5b/SS 2b AHS 6-7)

I was a weatherman way back when, so YMMV:

http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?CityName=Aurora&state=CO&site=BOU&textField1=39.699&textField2=-104.813

is the best in my view. Next is:

http://www.hamweather.net/cgi-bin/hw3/hw3.cgi?config=&forecast=zandh&pands=80013&Submit=GO

for the additional information, altho I think their forecasts are less accurate.

MesoWest is great for real-time surface observations:

http://www.met.utah.edu/cgi-bin/droman/mesomap.cgi?lat=39.66067&lon=-104.75483&radius=25&rawsflag=290&site=AR177

CoCoRaHS is great for what happened yesterday:

http://www.cocorahs.org/Maps/ViewMap.aspx?state=CO

HTH.

Dan

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 2:15PM
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pondgardener

Hi Bonnie,

Don't have a weather site for you but here's a link regarding gardening by moon phases that I found over at the Tomato forum. There are a couple of posters that have some fascinating info but you have to apply some of the information to be specific to the frost date and growing conditions. If I put out tomato plants according to the date(s) given, without protection, I would have some big problems. Maybe when they ask for the zip code for my area, I should plug in one for an area a bit farther north of Southern Colorado. Anyway, hope you enjoy exploring and share any other links that you know of.

Here is a link that might be useful: Planting Dates By Zip Code And Moon Phase

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 9:52PM
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digit(ID/WA)

Wow, I didn't know there was a Hamweather.net, Dan! I wonder where I've been. The Colorado Climate Center website is an interesting collection of volunteers. It says, "CoCoRaHS Idaho officially launched in the Gem State on January 1, 2009, with 33 volunteers signed up as of our launch date, and 50 volunteers as of January 15." I think that I have every excuse for not knowing a thing about that one . . .

I was just going on and on to the RMG people about that MesoWest site the other day. But, you can find some of those and some of another group of local sites with fairly complete weather info thru Wunderground.com.

Wunderground has just a lot of local info right there (yucky ads, too). If you go to the Current Conditions box and click "Select a source for your current conditions" - you find the most interesting list. Some of those places might be just outside your front door.

Bonnie, I think you should gain an understanding of "growing degree days" as a benefit to your gardening. (Then you can come back and tell us what GDD's are all about. ;o) It's just a little bit of a different way of thinking about the growing season.

We need something other than what we usually rely on.
 We should pay some attention to the calendar but everyone knows that one year is different from the last.
 The USDA and their "hardiness zones" has nothing to do with growing annuals in our gardens.
 Days to Maturity ratings for varieties are made up by the seed companies out of the thin air, usually.
 And finally, we become accustom to cold weather and often run impatiently out to plant based on how we feel. If we really want to do that - we should be bounding out naked to run our fingers and toes thru the cold, cold Spring soil. That might give us a realistic idea of when we can sow seed and start our precious crops outdoors. Don't you think?

digitS'

Here is a link that might be useful: Growing Degree Days US cities to date

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 1:29AM
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dan_staley(5b/SS 2b AHS 6-7)

digitS':

I have one of the MesoWest stations close enough to the house that when I go to the corner I can see the roof of it, so I use the temp (but not wind). Be careful of the HamWx forecasts, as I do better (but not better than NWS all the time). PErsonally I don't like Wunderground due to the ads slowing my compiling speed, but I read Jeff Masters' blog.

I agree with your degree days - we can use it to our advantage esp with our microclimates. I have a large southern exposure wall on the house (2-story) so it collects tons of heat (too much in July) and I put the raised beds there & use the thermometer for my degree days.

Knowing our yard and its microclimates is key - and we can make our own microclimates merely by making berms oriented E-W that will do wonders for extending the season.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 5:51PM
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david52_gw

I generally use the NOAA site out of Grand Junction and links from there. I've enjoyed, over the years, the literary style of the person on the night shift, the one who posts his updates at 3.45 am. He has now moved to the day shift, so I need to check in around 4:00 pm. Just to give you an idea of the contrast in styles, describing the same event:

This is the new, night shift guy:

CHALLENGING FORECAST AHEAD AS THE RIDGE THAT HAS BEEN SO PERSISTENT FINALLY BREAKS DOWN TODAY. APPEARS WE WILL END THE WEEK ON A CLOUDY AND WET NOTE FOR MANY LOCATIONS...ESPECIALLY THE MOUNTAINS.
Booooooorrrrriing. Now, here's the star, describing the same thing yesterday afternoon:

HIGH CLOUDS INVADING FROM THE SOUTHWEST INDICATE THE ASSAULT ON THE
UPPER LEVEL RIDGE HAS BEGUN. THE BATTLE WILL LAST THROUGH THESE
PERIODS WITH THE RIDGE SHARPLY FLATTENED BUT NOT FULLY DEFEATED.
THERE ARE MANY OPPORTUNITIES TO EXCEL WITH THIS FORECAST.

TONIGHT: THE FIRST WAVE PASSING TONIGHT IS SACRIFICIAL AND WILL
LIKELY NOT PRODUCE PRECIPITATION. WHAT IT WILL DO TONIGHT...UNDER
THICKENING AND LOWERING CEILINGS...IS DISRUPT THE OUTGOING ENERGY
BALANCE.

You can tell the guy enjoys his job.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2009 at 11:44AM
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digit(ID/WA)

Can you send that guy up here, David??

I mean . . . yesterday's low temperature was 20° and the high temperature was 23°. I have seen the sun (what is it now?) one day out of the last 2 weeks . . .

The only interesting weather condition is freezing fog. An early morning drive anywhere requires stopping after a few miles to allow the ice to melt off the windshield. The pavement is a little slick . . . uh, there's a huge pile of snow that is as hard as concrete . . .

There it is!! I just saw a robin in the yard! Of course, the last time I saw a robin here was a month ago and then the temps dropped to -18° and we got the greatest accumulation of snow in history . . . ain't no cure . . .

s'. . . _ \
. . . we haven't had an earthquake lately.

One can't complain. I have my friends.
Someone spoke to me only yesterday.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2009 at 1:38PM
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