Friday, December 13, 2013
When the summer of 2013 is over we will remember the rain of June, the humidity of July and the spectacular weather of August. As horrible as June was this year, August is making up for it in spades. The fine weather is going to continue for the next week with barely an interruption in the sunshine.
As moisture streams northward into the mid-Atlantic region Sunday a few high clouds will cross the sky across southern Maine. This means the sun may not be quite as bright as today, especially across York County.
Temperatures are going to continue to run warm by day and comfortably cool at night through Monday. As we get deeper into next week the mercury will rise a bit each day and mid 80s will be reached in several towns by Wednesday and Thursday. Each of those days will be ideal to be at the beach.
The amount of daylight continues to shorten as we lose about 15 minutes of light in a week. The sunrise will occur a few minutes before 6 AM for only another week and then it will start rising after 6 AM. Sunsets are rapidly becoming earlier and next week will start occurring before 7:30 PM. The total amount of daylight stands at about 13 hours and 30 minutes right now. To illustrate how fast things are changing that number will fall to 12 hours in about 4 weeks a loss of a whopping 90 minutes of possible sunshine. This is the big contributing factor in why temperatures are going to cool so drastically each fall. The sun is also getting lower in the sky each day and you should be noticing longer shadows lasting into mid-morning and starting to show up earlier in the afternoon.
The tropics are still relatively quiet although there are two areas of interesting weather. Erin is still a tropical storm, but poses no threat to land. I expect this area to fall apart over the next several days as dry air eats away at the storm.
There is an area of thunderstorms in the Gulf of Mexico which could blossom in tropical storm Fernand over the next 5 days or so. There is still a possibility the area never organizes and provides just a day or two of rain to parts of the Gulf Coast.
Lastly, there are some leaves starting to change across the region. You might think that is due to the cool nights we have experienced the past week. Most likely trees whose leaves are changing in mid-August are due to the tree being under some sort of stress such as disease or insect pressure.
Gardening this week Tomato and corn season is upon us here in New England and the produce is wonderful. My own tomatoes are now coming to maturity and the video below is an update to one tomato plant I rescued last fall from a sidewalk at Framingham State. The plant was growing in the crack of the concrete and I kept it alive all winter. I'll be updating the details of the weather on Twitter at @growingwisdom Please follow me there. Feel free to comment or ask questions too.Tweet
David Epstein has been a meteorologist for more than 25 years. He spent 16 years in Boston and currently freelances at WGME13 in Portland.
In 2006, David founded GrowingWisdom.com, a business producing educational and marketing videos for the green industry. He currently is a professor at Framingham State College, teaches Jan Plan at Colby College and owns Bloomscapes Inc., a landscape design business.
David authored "Gardens Of New England" and his work has been published in Grolier's Science Annual for 10 years. He lives in South Natick, Mass., and has a summer home in Harpswell.