global warming?

michele_1November 21, 2006

It's going to 67 degrees this Thansgiving. It was 78 here just two weeks ago. My encore azaleas are blooming like crazy, Nov. 21. My irises are confused; they think it's spring. Still have plenty of leaves on trees (color of course is changing). My "deciduous" hydrangeas and my blue berries are starting to look more like evergreens. My butterfly bush is putting out new leaves.

We had record drought two summers in a row. I mean no rain! The only time we got rain the last two summers was when they had a hurricane on the coast. Honestly, it just didn't, wouldn't, rain! We had thunder several times, no water.

Summers are often dry here, but we are way below normal rain fall levels two years in a row now. Worried we will lose some deciduous trees in our woods. What am I supposed to do, water the woods next summer?

Is anyone else scratching their heads wondering what's up?

Perplexed southern gardener.


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the_virginian(Zone 7 NoVA)

The cooler than normal fall makes me wonder about global warming if it is real or not. Summers even here in the mid/upper South have tended to be drier and hotter than normal. More wonder is all I have to offer on the subject.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2006 at 2:15PM
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dannyboquet(z9 So Louisiana)

Scientists who study hurricanes got their forecast completely wrong this year. If we can't predict weather on a very general scale one year into the future, how can we predict the weather for decades to come. We have studied the weather patterns for such a short amount of time compared to the age of the earth, we really cannot make statements about what is normal with great confidence and cannot make predictions about man's effect on the weather. Scientists who study the weather patterns over the eons believe that the earth goes through ice ages and tropical periods, but what what about the smaller variations over smaller time periods. We just don't know. I have tried to keep current with the latest scientific thoughts on the subject, but I remember about ten years ago when it was thought we were going into an ice age. I also have nothing but wonder to add to the situation (along with more skepticism regarding scientists).

    Bookmark   November 24, 2006 at 11:12AM
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From what I have gathered the scientists have mixed feelings on wether or not global warming will make everything hotter or cause an ice age. As the water melts at the poles it will somewhat desalinate the ocean which will evaporate at lower temperatures and cause more clouds which will lower the temps. At least that's one theory I heard.

    Bookmark   November 25, 2006 at 6:29AM
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My 2cents-- when I lived in Wisconsin and North Dakota--I didn't find global warming to be a very scarey prospect. LOL..
Of course now that Im in NC it is a little different.

But still--I agree with the general consensus-- I'm somewhat skeptical that 'scientists' have that much of a handle one the weather. Usually I just shake my head at that sort of thing and consider the prospect of men thinking they can turn giant asteroids out of our path as just about the funniest thing I've heard. I always think its odd that folks who can't keep one hair on thier head from turning gray think they can control the heavens or predict the weather. :-) mary t

    Bookmark   November 25, 2006 at 11:30AM
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Predicting rain and snow and minor temperature changes is not anything like documenting scientifically the effect humans are having on the planet. Global warming is not being debated in the scientific community, it has already been proven. Anyone declaring otherwise is most likely crazy or being paid by the major oil and coal producing companies to say otherwise:
(New York Times Article)
(USA Today Article)
The issue at this point is not if it is happening, but rather what changes will society make to keep it from having such drastic effects and possibly causing serious damage to the planet that can not be reversed. Acting responsibly to preserve the planet's health is now a moral issue effecting the lives of future generations. If you haven't seen it, then I highly recommend you watch "An Inconvenient Truth". It will open your eyes.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2006 at 12:02AM
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buford(7 NE GA)

You can prove that the temps have gone up, what you can't prove is why. Did you know that there was a period in the Middle Ages when temps were higher than they are now? What oil and coal producing companies can we blame that on?

I am sure what humans do has an effect on the earth. I'm also sure that there are natural forces that will do what they want to do despite our best efforts at intervention. There have been hot periods and ice ages before man walked the earth. What makes you think we can stop or start them?

    Bookmark   November 29, 2006 at 6:26AM
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You are correct that there was a warming trend recorded in Greenland and Europe during the Middle agesÂbut you are incorrect in your assumption that this means there is not currently a climate crisis of global proportion that far surpasses the historic record of that trend. See these articles for more info Â

HERE Â Point by point discussion of the rhetoric surrounding the debate on this.
HERE Â Extensive outline of the scientific history (scroll to the bottom for the part that eliminates the argument for a medieval warming trend)
HERE Â Shorter paragraph summing up the info above via

You are also correct that what humans do effects the earth. Simple logic would hopefully encourage most people to agree. But that doesnÂt mean that our inevitable effect on the planet should not be a moral priorityÂrunning amok with the planets natural resources is not really respectable behavior. You asked what makes us think we can stop itÂbut what makes you think we canÂt? I donÂt describe to a defeatist attitude. We are not just talking whether or not it is hotter or colder outsideÂ

* We are talking the reduction and extinction of native plants in what are otherwise their natural temperate zone and the rise of invasive plants into those zones having a profound effect on global ecology, farming and sustainability of food production, and ultimately your own gardening successes or failures.

* We are talking about an increase in the level of disease carrying vectors such as mosquitoes, fleas, lice etc. that can effect human health.

* We are talking about the increase in atmospheric and ozone changes that effect the health of millions of peopleÂasthma, allergies, and
general respiratory illnesses
due to breathing polluted air under adverse environmental conditions.

* We are talking the ability of the environment to naturally "repair" and heal itself after massive removal of forest, and changes in oceanic life effecting the ecosystems of thousands of marine organism and fish etc., also effecting global food supply.

* We are talking about migratory habits of animals changing and thus effecting the extinction of animal species.

* We are talking about significant losses in the polar ice caps which will raise oceanic water levels further changing weather patterns adversely effecting human and animal life.

ItÂs a good discussion for a forum concerned with gardening and for individuals that care about the health of their plants and nature in general.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2006 at 1:06PM
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mistiaggie(z9A Tx)

I think the ho-hum debate between people who get their news from the general media and don't have a scientific background or are willing to research it a bit, generally don't have a strong understanding and are willing to just say "it may or may not be", which is just blinding yourself even more to the truth. There is plenty of science to back it up. Go to the library, pick up a scientific journal and read it. Don't listen to news reports which serve their own purposes the majority of the time.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2006 at 10:08AM
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So, does that mean I'm going to have to water my decidious woods next summer? If so, I need to get a rain barrel this winter, a big one, several big ones, while I've got some rain! Water's not cheap!

I'm not making light of it. Just trying to throw in a little humor. The summer water situation here in N. MS is anything but funny, however! The farmers are tearing their hair.

Not much I can do to stop global warming. Trying to do my little bit to help the environment and wildlife in my neck of the woods.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2006 at 9:43AM
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I find it funny that back in the 50's and 60's they thought there was a problem with GLOBAL COOLING! YUP thats right... they thought the stuff that they now say is causing warming was causing the cold to get us... BUT what is funnier to me still is the belief that we humans are in control of the earth and its temps... when they look back in the rocks they find that there was both global warming and cooling before US!

On the funny side TX is just exactly as it has been for all my 40+ yrs.... Xmas can be so cold we are freezin' or tail feathers off or so hot we are in the lake swimmin' to cool off! Seems normal to me! Cat

    Bookmark   December 7, 2006 at 3:32PM
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buford(7 NE GA)

I agree dragon. 15 years ago, these same 'experts' were warning of a coming ice age. And whatever we do, mother nature is 1 million times more powerful.

It's going down to the teens tonight, so say goodbye to all that warm weather. Now we can start complaining about how cold it is.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2006 at 10:09PM
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And yet an archipelago in the Pacific was evacuated this year and all its residents moved off the islands because the water level has risen enough that they could no longer stay. The question is not whether global warming is happening. The only question remaining is whether controlling carbon emissions can have an effect.
And let's not denigrate experts. They're called experts because they know more about a topic than most people know. Surgeons are experts. Engineers are experts. Plumbers are experts. Michael Dirr is an expert on shrubs.
And on the topic of an ice age - that is one probable result of global warming. It is possible that melting polar caps will cool the oceans and initiate an ice age.
It seems to me that the best response to global warning that we know of now is to lower carbon dioxide emissions. It might or might not work - we don't know. But if it does work, we're fools not to try, and if it doesn't make a difference, at least we tried. It's better than making fun of the 'experts' who are trying to find a solution.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2006 at 2:47PM
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mistiaggie(z9A Tx)

What gets me about the non-global warming people is that they don't seem to understand the implications. Whether or not it is human induced, it will have a major effect on the majority of the worlds populations. I believe the number is around 75% of the world living near the coastline. Those coastlines go underwater and it will have a major affect on how humans live. Governments, countries, whole ecosystems will collapse. End of story. So, it's not a matter of if we're doing it, it's a matter of it is happening no matter what. Now we need to decide if this is an ok thing for us, to let the Earth continue to warm, sea levels rise, ecosystems collapse, and the Earth change and we as humans decide to take a step in being proactive and being ahead of the game by organizing ourselves for the future. If we're not flexible, we may just end up losing everything the past 250 years has created.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2006 at 10:39AM
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dannyboquet(z9 So Louisiana)

Apparently there was a warm period, known as the "medieval warm period" in the years 800 - 1000 AD where there was great prosperity in Europe.

Also, apparently the temperature on Mars is increasing also. Damn that Mars Rover and the people who sent it. They should have known what effects Man would have on its environment.

Also, by coincidence, the sun is warmer too. I don't think we have a Solar Rover on its surface, so at least we aren't responsible for the sun's temperature increasing. And I know the fact that the sun is hotter has no affect on the Earth's and Mar's temperature.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2006 at 10:39AM
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One fear is that global warming will interfere with the gulf stream, causing an ice age.

We are adversely affecting this planet. There can be no question about it. Look at extinction rates for both plants and animals! Burning of the rainforest.

How about all those chemicals in the ground water which pollutes drinking water. And again impacts negatively on wildlife.

I am surprised that folks on a garden web would dispute the negative consequences of using pesticides and herbicides. Do you think pesticides and heribicides that wash off in ground water don't poison birds. How would it not? Poison you too if you drank it. Kills birds, they're a lot smaller.

We need to come to our senses! Not think only of ourselves. Of course, that is very short-sighted because pollution and habitat destruction certainly affects us, and those affects will worsen in the future!

    Bookmark   December 15, 2006 at 10:54AM
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Ok, I have avoided posting to this one because I know my ideas are very different than most people. I don't expect anyone to agree with me on this but...

Are we affecting the planet? Of course we are but then again so doesn't every animal and plant. There was a study done over 10 years ago that said that a certain percentage of the greenhouse gasses was caused by cows cutting the cheese. Imagine if we hadn't started using oil, gas and coal to heat our houses. All the people in the world using wood to heat their houses. Nevermind the increased pollution but there would be very few trees left to produce oxygen. By the way in case you didn't know it, oil and gas are natural products. Without burning something our only options are sun and wind and no one has devised anything yet that would completely be able to heat every residence on the earth using those. And talk about transportation...If we all went back to horses the pollution would be even greater.

Is global warming a bad thing? Maybe not for the planet overall. For individual people, probably. One of the big things people are saying about global warming is that it may trigger a big extinction event. Well they have happened in the past and if they hadn't happened I wouldn't be typing this cause there would be no homo sapians. As it is I think people trying to save different plants and animals from extinction like the bald eagle are harming nature more than the people killing them off. You can't have evolution without their being extinctions.

Without making this overly long...I could go on for days. No matter what we do about global warming it is not going to make any difference unless we lower the human population. Do you realize that the total number of people on the earth when Jesus was walking it, is less than the number of people living in Texas now. No wonder they said be fruitful and multiply. If we don't lower the population then we will be done for not matter what else we do.

I think we need an extinction event and maybe humans will be one of the species going extinct. Maybe we will be replaced with a smarter animal.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2006 at 10:06AM
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dannyboquet(z9 So Louisiana)

Interesting post wgafaw. My thoughts are different from most people's today also. I believe that people are different from other animals and that they have a worth more than other living things. As far as conservation, I believe we need to conserve natural resources. However, even if we cut our use of fossil fuels by half we would still run out. It would just take twice as long. We need to develop alternative sources of energy as well as have an effective recycling program. The problem is the government in large part is in charge of both. Government is extraordinarily inefficient at almost everything they do. When it becomes economical feasible the free market will come up with the answer.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2006 at 8:15AM
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