Saturday, February 26, 2011

Average Date of Last Freeze

This time of year folks in the South start itching to get outside and do yard work, plant a garden, etc.  This bout of "spring fever" usually sparks the question - just when does the last freeze of the season typically take place?  

If you're in the tannish-greenish shaded regions on the map above, you're typically good to go by the end of February (which of course, is coming right at us).  This includes almost all of Florida and the immediate Gulf Coast, as well as parts of southern Arizona and California.

For a closer look at Texas and Oklahoma, (the two states with our highest blog readership) take a look at the images below:

Now, we all know that "average" and "normal" vs. reality are two (or three) entirely different things, especially when dealing with the weather.  

So, with that lovely fact pointed out, just how does this coming March look compared to "normal"?  Below is the latest temperature "departure from normal" forecast from the CPC for the month of March:

If the above forecast verifies, much of the southern and central Plains will experience "above normal" temperatures in March (reddish-orangish shaded regions on the map above).  This would tend to suggest that the "normal/average" last freeze dates would indeed be the latest date a freeze should threaten this year, if again at all.

The Pacific Northwest, California coast and Alaska are the only regions forecast to have "Below Normal" temperatures in March (blue shaded regions on the map above).

The remainder of the nation is forecast to have near normal temperatures during the month of March.

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