Ireland summer delayed – No May blossoms yet

And too wet to plow.

22 May 2018 – “Ice Age Now readers may be interested to know that here in Ireland we seem to be about 3 weeks behind in the season,” says reader David Loring.

“My neighbour has been unable to plough as it has been too wet and the first cut of silage which should have happened by now has not because there has not been enough growth in the grass. It is looking doubtful if there will be a second cut this year, if there is a first cut,  which means Ireland next winter may have an even worse fodder crisis than over this last winter.

“We have only hit 20 deg C (68 F) twice this year and here we are at the end of May with some trees only just now beginning to leaf up.

Photo courtesy of David Loring

“The hawthorns, normally a mass of white by now have no blossom yet. The first picture (above) is May 21st last year.

Photo courtesy of David Loring


21 thoughts on “Ireland summer delayed – No May blossoms yet

  1. I should add that this is the west of Ireland. It may have been warmer in the east of the country

  2. Hi David, I have to agree with you!

    Here in the sunny south east (Wexford) though we have had several sunny days the evenings are still cool and we need the heating on!
    Our neighbour who has lived here for many years reckons this is the worst spring she can remember!

  3. Similar situation in sweden, we didn’t have a spring at all, just winter all the way until beginning of may where it got a bit warmer and now its around 20c every day.

    I’ve never seen weather like this.

    What’s more worrying is the fact that I don’t see any bugs or bees really at all. They are everywhere this time of year usually but there’s hardly any of them.

    • bugs go underground or under bark so theyll prob be ok and come out soon -if they made it.
      bees however need a decent store of honey n pollen to get by with
      if they were shedded to keep warmth in and checked and supplied with extra sugar syrup and substitute feed that keeps them going Id expect them to be out working..Id hope you have the Ligurian bees there as theyre both heat and cold tolerant, more so than some others are.
      whats the flowering tree and wild plant situation like?

  4. Similar situation here in Southern California as well. Two years ago we were getting 90+F days almost every day where I live now, with a few over 100F. This year we’re regularly getting sub-70F to low 70s for the high and we’re kicking on the heat at night once or twice a week still. I go out in the middle of the afternoon some days and have to put on a sweatshirt to be comfortable.

    My neighbors have a poorly insulated old farm house and I know they’re using heat almost every night for the past couple weeks. They only have a wood stove and I can smell the smoke every morning. I see my neighbor out there splitting firewood regularly because he ran out a while ago. We were running the AC at night two years ago. This has been unusually cool weather for this part of the world for all of 2018 so far.

  5. The fodder shortage is here in N. Ireland that’s for sure. At least 3 farmers have approached us for additional silage over the past month. Some cattle have been put out to graze only yesterday, some still inside.

  6. In Barrie, Ontario some of the trees are starting to blossom but it does seem to be delayed by recent standards. If it was delayed until June we would have a problem good and proper.

  7. Frank

    I think the cooling began at 2012, that’s the whole mayan thing. Since they followed the stars and the sun they could see some big event (cooling I reckon).

  8. Royal wedding last weekend – the pictures looked great, bright sunshine and “warm” however don’t be mistaken, go into the shade and it is cold. Unusually cold and to this day the air is still cold,

  9. The May blossom has just come out here in NW Cumbria. It is pleasantly warm in the sun but cold out of it with a chilly breeze. Actually, it is my favourite weather right now. Locals here say that the winter was long and very cold.

  10. I’m in the province of Ulster in the north of Ireland. The period of October ’17 to April ’18 has been unusually wet and often colder than average. Just in the past two weeks we have had drier, warmer conditions by day but often with cold nights. The flowers on my cherry blossom tree in my north facing garden were 2-3 weeks late this year. This is the latest I have ever known since the tree was planted.

  11. Where I live (southeastern VA, in the US) we also have had a very odd “spring”… quite cold most days, then a short spell of hot, back to cold. A lot more rain & thunderstorm threats than normal this late in the spring.

    Overall it has felt like winter went straight into summer, then odd extreme spring-storm season… the past few weekends too many thunderstorm warnings (which continue into this weekend) to consider leaving the house for long… altho most turned out to be “duds” (i.e., no thunderstorm actually arrived).

    I hate to say it though – the darn BUGS absolutely LOVE it (except I’m not seeing as many bees… just the annoying things likes midges/soil fleas/gnats (whatever those little ones are here, not sure, but they BITE and I get histamine overreaction). Oh and the most annoying WEEDS love it too… Virginia creeper, honeysuckle, and now I have seen a few poison ivy vines & for the first time kudzu. I cannot myself get into most parts of the garden and get rid of them, due to physical limitations. Glad it’s not my house (the landlord’s son supposedly will take care of it… but he’s been overwhelmed with the need to cut grass…a huge amount of lawn on this farm).

    Oh well, that’s the end of my gripping… at least it’s not volcanic eruptions or SNOW!!

  12. In Missouri we went from winter to summer, frost advisories to 90 F. They’re predicting a record hot summer. I would kill for some of that cool weather! As I said, the native plants take it all in stride. Plant native if you want to eat.

  13. Great article and analysis by everyone. My wife and I here in Eastern Scotland are very concerned for our garden flowers, as there literally are NO bees! Some bumble-bees but zero HONEY BEES. Normally at this time of year with the blossoming of the trees we have loads of bees, but this year in 2018 none at all so far! This does not bode well if it was to continue for any length of time. Other insects are also missing. We attribute this to the very long cold winter that we just had in Scotland (UK) which finally ended on the 2nd of May.

    • It’s my understanding there are other pollinators can also do the same thing as bees (not sure how well though). Pretty sure bumble bees can do the trick!

      https://www.buzzaboutbees.net/bumblebees-for-pollination.html

      It’s my understanding, for example, in the Western hemisphere the only type of bees they had were a kind of stingerless bees (until the Europeans brought them)… and a bunch of other pollinators. Yet they had agricultural societies. There were also no earthworms here…

  14. It is the same here is Scotland, at least in our garden. NO BEES! The apple and cherry blossoms have been very late this year and lo and behold our flowered trees normally are covered in BEES. This year there are NONE all. I just checked another tree of ours which has just become full of hanging yellow flours which the BEES normally go crazy about, but NONE ONE BEE! We have also noticed extremes of temperature difference from being in the sunshine to being in the shade. it would sometimes feel like 5-10C difference. That simply can’t be normal. We see occasional rises in the temp to 22C only to have it dip quickly down to 8C by 8PM. That is not normal.

  15. In the South East of Scotland the Spring was about 3 or 4 Weeks late but maybe that is actually normal for a Grand Solar minimum there has been Bees about but hardly any Wasps. This last Week the Weather has been very Sunny but the Temps although Mild have been dropping quite a bit at night.

  16. Ill second the Southern California comment. I live at 2100’ in the foothilLs and spring has been so cold we don’t have ANY peaches I can see. The blooms were weak and sporadic and there is only very small fruit beginning.

    Two years ago we had full size fruit by the first week of June. Not a chance this year. The tree flowered in mid March in 2016. It was mid April this year.

    Average high temp is easily 20F cooler than last two years. You would see some high 80s Low 90s by now. Has not reached 85F yet. Even with May grey and June gloom. I turned the heat on last Sat to get rid of the damp chill in the house.

    It’s gonna be a cool summer. which is fine from a power use perspective.

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