Saturday Strawberry Weather Update – Still Chance of FROST on Tue Morning (3pm, 3/21/15)

— Written By

Multi-state Strawberry Weather Update:

Earlier this week we had reason to believe that we might see multiple nights of frost in this upcoming week. As of today, the forecast has changed for the better. However, there is still prospect of FROST this Tuesday morning in more northern piedmont areas! But, having just one night to worry about is a whole lot better than 2-3 nights!

Bottom line:  If you are a grower with a crop that has advanced into bloom stage, and you have a temperature forecast for this next Tuesday morning in the mid-30s, or lower, BE PREPARED TO FROST PROTECT. You can quickly check the AWIS 7-day Minimum Temp forecast for your state and general location by opening the pdf files that immediately follow for each state below.

1. NCAWIS NC Mar 21-28  (open this file NOW to see what the minimum temperature will be for your general area next Tuesday morning)

I always like to start off with my SkyBit for Clayton, and please now note that there now seems to be much less threat of frost on Tuesday morning (36 F minimum in canopy and 38 F at 2 m weather shelter). Earlier, there was concern we might have frost episodes Tue-Wed-Thur, so this is quite a nice development (I had several calls just yesterday of growers who were really getting worried about having to deal with multiple frost episodes next week). Even so, there is a chance of frost at Clayton Tuesday morning, but in locations like Burlington, NC (central piedmont), I see a far better chance of frost that morning (read below), and any areas where the air temperature at weather shelter height is going to be in the mid-30s and lower!

clayton skybit

7daytemp.nc.6Fig. 1. This is the current minimum temp forecast map for Tue, 3/24. This is quite a contrast to what we were looking at several days ago (see Fig. 2). Even so, all of the areas you see on this newest map that are in blue or dark blue, are likely to be at risk for FROST this Monday night/Tuesday morning. And, even areas in the central piedmont in teal color (36-38) have a chance for FROST (see Burlington example in Table 2).

7daytemp.nc.12 Fig. 2. On March 18th (three days ago), this was the forecast for Tuesday, 3/24. At that time we were looking at temperatures of 32 F (and lower) across much of the central and western piedmont. Now, these same areas are expected to see lows of perhaps 36-38 (se Figure 1). However, what has NOT CHANGED is the higher risk of FROST in northern piedmont counties north and east of Raleigh (see Fig. 1). Take a very close look at the blue and navy blue areas in Figure 1 – those areas could be PRIME for frost on Tuesday morning.

The fly in the ointment:  I am really sorry to say that so many areas could still see a frost this Tuesday morning. For example, take a look at the Burlington, NC, area for Tue. morning (3/24), as they may experience a FROST from 3 a.m. to sunrise that morning, according to this AWIS 10 Day hourly forecast product. Remember, you can get frost even with a minimum temperature forecast of 35 F (see table below), as conditions at the strawberry canopy level  can be significantly colder than at weather shelter height. Bottom line:  If you are a grower with a crop that has advanced into bloom stage, and you have a temperature forecast for this next Tuesday morning in the mid-30s, or lower, BE PREPARED TO FROST PROTECT.

Burlington

All NC growers should check these more detailed hourly forecast for the city/town closest to them:  (anyone who is in TEAL temperature band of 36-38, Figure 1, is well advised to spend a moment studying his/her 10 day hourly, and LOOK TO SEE IF THERE IS AN “F” (frost) INDICATED ON THE TABLE FOR YOUR AREA.

10-DAY DETAILED HOURLY WEATHER FORECASTS 

Ahoskie-Tri-Cou Albemarle_AP Andrews Asheboro
Asheville_Munic Beaufort-Michae Boone_NC Burlington-Burl
Cape_Hatteras_AG Chapel_Hill-Hor Charlotte Cherry_Point
Clinton_NC Concord_NC Currituck_NC Edenton-Northea
Elizabeth_City Elizabethtown_NC Erwin-Harnett_C Fayetteville_AP
Fort_Bragg/Simm Franklin/Macon_C Gastonia-Gaston Goldsboro_AFB
Goldsboro_NC Greensboro Greenville_AP_NC Hickory
Jacksonville Jacksonville_(A Jefferson_AP_NC Kenansville-Dup
Kill_Devil_Hills Kinston_AP Lexington-David Lincolnton_AP
Louisburg_NC Lumberton_AP_NC Mackall_AAF Manteo/Dare_Co
Maxton Mcalf_Bogue_Fiel Monroe_AP_NC Morganton-Morga
Mount_Airy-Moun New_Bern North_Wilkesbor Oxford_NC
Piney_Island_Bom Pope_AFB Raleigh-Durham Reidsville_AP
Roanoke_Rap_AP Roanoke_Rapids_R Rockingham_NC Rocky_Mount-Wils
Roxboro_AP Rutherfordton Salisbury-Rowan Sanford_NC
Shelby_AP_NC Smithfield_AP Southern_Pines Southport_NC
Statesville-Sta Tarboro_AP Wadesboro_AP Washington-Warr
Whiteville_NC Wilmington_AP_NC Winston-Salem

2. VA: AWIS VA MAR 21-28

I noted with a lot of interest just how cold it is going to be not only in western and central VA next week, but check out eastern VA:

EASETRN VA

7daytemp.at.2 7daytemp.at.4 7daytemp.at.6 7daytemp.at.810-DAY DETAILED HOURLY WEATHER FORECASTS 

Abingdon Ashland_VA Charlottesville Chesapeake-Ches
Culpeper Danville Dublin/New_Riv Emporia_VA
Farmville Fentress_Naval_A Fort_Belvoir/Da Fort_Eustis/Fel
Franklin/J_B_Ro Hillsville Hot_Springs/Ing Jonesville_AP
Langley_AFB Leesburg/Godfre Louisa-Louisa_C Lynchburg
Manassas_Muni(A Marion/Wythev Martinsville Mecklenburg/Bru
Melfa/Accomack Newport_News Norfolk_Hampton_ Norfolk_NAS
Norfolk_VA Oceana Orange_VA Petersburg_(AWO
Quantico Richlands_AP Richlands_VA Richmond
Richmond_Chester Roanoke Shannon_Arpt Stafford_AP_VA
Staunton-Shenan Suffolk-Suffolk Tappahannock_AP Virginia_Tech_A
Wakefield_AP Wallops_Island Warrenton_Fauqui Washington_Dulle
West_Point_VA Williamsburg_VA Winchester_Rgnl Wise/Lonesome_P

3. SC: SC AWIS MAR 21-28

10-DAY DETAILED HOURLY WEATHER FORECASTS 

Aiken_AP Anderson_Co_Air Barnwell_AP Beaufort_Cnty_AP
Beaufort_SC Bennettsville_Je Camden_AP Charleston_Exec_
Charleston_Muni Cheraw_AP Chester_AP Clemson-Clemson
Columbia-Columb Columbia/McEnti Columbia_Metro Conway_AP
Darlington Florence_SC Georgetown_AP_SC Greenville_Donal
Greenville_Down Greenville-Spart Greenwood-Green Hartsville_AP
Hilton_Head_AP Kingstree_AP Lancaster-McWhir Laurens_AP
Manning_AP Marion_AP_SC Moncks_Corner_AP Mount_Pleasant_A
Myrtle_Beach Newberry_AP North_Myrtle_Be Orangeburg-Oran
Pickens_AP Rock_Hill Spartanburg_Down Summerville_AP
Sumter_AP Sumter_SC Walterboro_AP Winnsboro_AP

4. TN: AWIS TN MAR 21-28

10-DAY DETAILED HOURLY WEATHER FORECASTS 

Chattanooga/Lov Clarksville_TN Crossville_AP Dyersburg
Elizabethton_AP Jackson_TN Knoxville_AP Memphis_AP
Millington Nashville_Metro Oak_Ridge_TN Smyrna
Tri-City_RGNL_AP

5. KY: AWIS KY MAR 21-28

10-DAY DETAILED HOURLY WEATHER FORECASTS 

Bowling_Green Covington Danville-Powell_ Fort_Campbell
Fort_Knox/Godma Frankfort_AP Glasgow_KY Henderson_City
Jackson_KY Lexington_KY London_Corbin Louisville_AP
Louisville/Bowm Middlesboro_AP Monticello_KY_AP Murray_AP
Owensboro_AP Paducah Richmond_Madison Somerset(AWOS)

6. MD: AWIS MD MAR 21-28

10-DAY DETAILED HOURLY WEATHER FORECASTS 

Aberdeen Andrews_AFB Annapolis_Naval Baltimore_Sci_Ce
Baltimore/Wash Cambridge/Dorche College_Park_AP Cumberland_AP
Easton_MD Fort_Meade Frederick_MD Gaithersburg_AP
Hagerstown_AP Leonardtown Middle_River Oakland_MD_AP
Ocean_City_AP Patuxent_River Salisbury Stevensville_AP
St_Inigoes/Webst Washington_DC_AP Westminster_AP
Dr. E. Barclay Poling
Professor Emeritus (Strawberry Plasticulture Researcher)
Department of Horticultural Science
Campus Box 7609, 162A Kilgore Hall
NC State University
Raleigh, NC 27695-7609

“An idealist believes the short run does not count. A cynic believes the long run does not matter. A realist believes that what is done or left undone in the short run determines the long run.”

Sidney J. Harris, In: Reclaiming a Lost Heritage – Land-Grant & Other Higher Education Initiatives for the Twenty-first Century