3:00 PM SUNDAY FROST UPDATE FOR NORTH CAROLINA – BE CAREFUL IN AREAS COLDER THAN 38 F(April 21, 2013)

Dear Growers, Agents, Agronomists and Others

I did not receive many reports this morning from NC growers about frost this morning except this note from Larry McCauley in Burlington, NC:

“Dr. Poling,

All services except Skybit called for no frost in the Alamance county area. I did not cover and there was a light frost. I can’t see any damage at the this point. The forcast for Sunday night is a low of 36 to39 but no frost advisory from any source. I don’t plan to cover . What is your opinion ?
Larry McCauley”

Reply:  I would cover for tonight!

Editor’s note:  Some of you may remember that I said in last evening’s update that Burlington was one of the very few piedmont areas that might frost this morning!

Well, what’s ahead for tonight?

  • The AWIS Weather Services NC Frost/Freeze Forecast (as of this morning) is saying that only of the regions covered by this product (it covers Eastern NC, Sandhills and East Central NC), are the 2 East-Central areas:  Franklin County and Alamance County, thus I advised Mr. McCauley to be prepared for a heavier frost tonight in Burlington!  You can see AWIS hourly forecast for Burlington right here:
  • Burlington forecast for Mon
  • Table 1.  AWIS hourly for Burlington NC – shows this area is prone to frost Monday morning
  • FROST is anticipated at 5 am:  Burlington FROST 5 am Mon

AND, HERE IS THE MOST INTERESTING AWIS MINIMUM TEMPERATURE MAP I HAVE SEEN ALL YEAR, AS IT SHOWS ONE SINGLE BLUE PIXEL (34-36) FOR BURLINGTON, NC; BUT, ALL OF THE SURROUNDING AREAS IN EAST CENTRAL PIEDMONT ARE IN THE TEAL COLOR FOR 36-38 F. NC MIN TEMP MAP MON MORNING

FIG. 1.  GROWERS IN 34-36 F MINIMIMUM TEMP BAND AND COLDER MUST TAKE PRECAUTIONS TO AVOID FROST DAMAGE TO OPEN BLOSSOMS ON MONDAY MORNING, INCLUDING LARRY AND ANY OTHER GROWERS IN THE STRANGELY MUCH COLDER BURLINGTON AREA?

HERE ARE THE MINIMUM TEMPERATURES FOR NUMEROUS LOCATIONS ACROSS NC FOR TOMORROW MORNING AND REST OF THE WEEK: NC MIN TEMP TABLE

FINALLY, HERE IS THE AWIS FROST/FREEZE FOR EASTERN NC, EAST CENTRAL PIED AND SANDHILLS

AWIS Weather Services, Inc.
North Carolina Frost/Freeze Forecast
Produced at  507 AM CDT on Sun Apr 21 2013

… Forecast for Tonight …

Northeast NC Coast
Currituck/Camden/Pasquotank/Tyrrell Counties

*** No Frost And/Or Freeze Danger Tonight ***

Lowest Temperatures:      44 – 50
Elizabeth_City Min          45

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

04/23/13  04/24/13  04/25/13  04/26/13  04/27/13  04/28/13
——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–
49 – 56   46 – 53   52 – 59   48 – 54   50 – 57   53 – 60
——–

East Central/SE NC Coast
Carteret/Pamlico Counties

*** No Frost And/Or Freeze Danger Tonight ***

Lowest Temperatures:      43 – 46
Morehead_City Min           46

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

04/23/13  04/24/13  04/25/13  04/26/13  04/27/13  04/28/13
——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–
50 – 52   46 – 51   54 – 57   52 – 54   54 – 55   56 – 58
——–

Southeast NC
NWS FORECAST ZONES 87-90,96-101
**** LITTLE IF ANY FROST DUE TO CLOUDS/WIND ****

Lowest Temperatures:      38 – 46
Elizabethtown Min           43
Range Dewpoint Temps:     30 – 46
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     39 – 48
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  NE 15
AVG Sky Condition:     Mostly Cloudy

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

04/23/13  04/24/13  04/25/13  04/26/13  04/27/13  04/28/13
——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–
43 – 50   47 – 51   53 – 58   49 – 54   52 – 56   54 – 58
——–

North-Central NC
Franklin County Area

**** NEAR FREEZING COLD LOCATIONS  ****
** PATCHY FROST COLDEST PROTECTED AREAS **

Lowest Temperatures:      34 – 44
Louisburg Min               34
Range Dewpoint Temps:     27 – 36
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     36 – 43
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  NE  7
AVG Sky Condition:     Partly Cloudy

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

04/23/13  04/24/13  04/25/13  04/26/13  04/27/13  04/28/13
——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–
38 – 49   43 – 50   48 – 54   44 – 51   48 – 55   49 – 56
——–

North/Central NC
Alamance County Area

**** NEAR FREEZING COLD LOCATIONS  ****
**** LITTLE IF ANY FROST ****

Lowest Temperatures:      34 – 40
Graham_AG Min               38
Range Dewpoint Temps:     26 – 36
Range Wetbulb  Temps:     36 – 43
AVG Wind Direction/Speed:  NE  9
AVG Sky Condition:     Partly Cloudy

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

04/23/13  04/24/13  04/25/13  04/26/13  04/27/13  04/28/13
——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–
38 – 45   45 – 50   49 – 54   46 – 50   46 – 55   51 – 56
——–

South/Central NC
Richmond County Area

*** No Frost And/Or Freeze Danger Tonight ***

Lowest Temperatures:      41 – 43
Ellerbe Min                 43

Extended Forecast: Range of Lowest Min Temperatures in the Above Zones
Min Temps Valid For Morning of Given Date (May NOT include ALL cold pockets)

04/23/13  04/24/13  04/25/13  04/26/13  04/27/13  04/28/13
——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–  ——–
42 – 48   47 – 49   52 – 55   49 – 51   53 – 54   53 – 56
——–

For more detailed information visit www.awis.com or call 888-798-9955.
Copyright 2013 AWIS Weather Services, Inc. All rights reserved.

What about Tuesday?  I AM AFRAID IT IS A COMPLICATED SITUATION ON TUESDAY MORNING, AS SOME AREAS THAT WILL ONLY REACH 37 MIN, ARE ALSO PRONE TO FROST – LIKE CONCORD, NC

nc map for tue

Fig. 2.  Tuesday morning minimum temperature map – the areas in the 36-38 F TEAL band and colder will have one more morning of frost to worry about, but what is really interesting is how areas like Concord, NC, which will have a minimum of 36 Monday morning and 37 F on Tuesday morning, has a forecast for FROST on both Monday and Tuesday according to AWIS Hourly Forecast shown in Table 2.  I would definitely have my frost alarm set at no lower than 37 F tonight and tomorrow night.  Frost is possibly going to occur at slightly higher temperatures on Tuesday morning, thus it would be well to be on alert for frost even in the powder blue areas (38-40).

concord nc

Table 2.  Concord will have frost both Mon and Tue mornings: Concord frost at 5am Mon and 5am Tue

SUMMARY

1. FROST IS POSSIBLE IN AREAS with minimum temperatures in the range of 36-38 F (TEAL),  34-36 F (LIGHT BLUE), and colder, for both Monday morning as well as Tuesday morning. Perhaps a frost is possible even in the POWDER BLUE color band on Tuesday morning.

2. FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO GET FARM SPECIFIC SKYBIT, KEEP CHECKING THEM!  THEY AND AWIS WERE THE ONLY WEATHER SERVICES TO “CALL” ANY POSSIBILITY OF FROST IN BURLINGTON THIS MORNING – CONGRATULATIONS TO BOTH SERVICES!

3. TYPE EVENT:  THIS IS A STANDARD RADIATION FROST ( WHITE FROST EVENT)

4. ACTIONS TO TAKE IF YOU ARE IN FROST PRONE AREA OF NC: 

  • PROTECTIVE MEASURES ARE REQUIRED TO PREVENT WHAT COULD OTHERWISE BE A SERIOUS FROST EVENT LATE IN SEASON
  • IF YOU ONLY HAVE ROW COVERS, THEY NEED TO GO BACK ON THIS AFTERNOON
  • IF YOU PLAN TO RUN SPRINKLING, THEN HAVE THE FROST ALARM SET AT 37-38 F, AND WHEN IT GOES OFF, CHECK OUT THE CONDITIONS IN THE FIELD. 
  • START SPRINKLING WHEN YOU SEE ICE CRYSTALS FORMING ON GROUND LEVEL WEEDS, LAY FLAT PIPE, AND CERTAINLY BY THE TIME ICE CRYSTALS CAN BE SEEN ON STRAWBERRY CANOPY.   THIS WILL BE THE COLDEST NIGHT TONIGHT, BUT SOME AREAS WILL LIKELY HAVE FROST AGAIN ON TUESDAY MORNING!

GOOD LUCK!

Dr. E. Barclay Poling
Professor Emeritus/Extension Strawberry Specialist
Department of Horticultural Science
Campus Box 7609, 162A Kilgore Hall
NC State University
Raleigh, NC 27695-7609
919-418-9687 (Cell)
919-515-2505 (Fax)
barclay_poling@ncsu.edu

http://strawberries.ces.ncsu.edu

Recommend this article?