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Friday, January 20, 2006

Snow in the Sahara

I heard on the TeeVee newz that it snowed in the Sahara Desert yesterday. First time this has happened in the memory of humankind. Like there are not even any legends that would hint at such an occurrence in the far past.

Climate Change/Global Warming? Yes.

Here at the farm this week we have seen snow, warm sunny days and thunderstorms. If it was March or April I would not be surprised by this kind of weather. We are supposed to have unsettled weather in the spring but not in the depths of winter. in winter we should have lots of high pressure events and lots of cold clear weather. But instead we are about 20 degrees F above average.

This makes me wonder what the spring will be like. If it is this stormy now, we can expect the storms to ramp up much more in the spring. Can you say hail, tornadoes, straight-line winds? Perhaps a late May freeze after several weeks of hot weather.

We will probably be happy that I went nuts and order 3x as much greenhouse plastic as we normally use. Storms with high winds and hail are quite hard on the hoophouse structures. But this kind of weather is even harder on crops and the hoophouses give our crops a lot of protection, even if the hoophouse gets damaged in a storm. and that can mean the difference between success and failure on the farm.

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