Archive for April 20th, 2011

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Northern Germany: Dustclouds Rolling

If recent years’ springs and summers were meteorologically typical for most of the year, we could expect olive trees to grow here within decades. But every winter would probably kill them again. It seems to me, based on more recent experience, that Northern Germany’s climate is moving towards a two-season climate now, without real springs or falls – it’s been warm or hot from April through August or September, and cold for the rest of the past few years.

Osterwiese - Bremens sixteen-days easter market, opened on April 15.

Precipitation in general is down a lot, and the last rain, except for a few drops that wouldn’t even make you want to shelter, was some five weeks ago, The “water balance” (rain minus evaporation) for Germany in general has been negative since March 1 this year.

waterpipes

Hedges, shrubs, and trees: reaching deep and thriving.

In our region, this seems to have a bad effect especially on oaktrees, which are greening only scarcely, and on all kinds of plants with short-reaching root systems.

A sand storm near Rostock, on the Baltic seacoast, led to a crash of up to eighty cars on the motorway Autobahn 19 on April 9th, with ten deaths and at least 97 injuries. Today, I heard several dust cloud warnings for Lower Saxony’s (the federal state neighboring and surrounding Bremen)  autobahns on the radio, and as it was one of the never-start-thinking radio stations, they kept issuing jubilant weather forecasts – for the weekend and beyond, no rain is expected either.

That doesn’t look like a promising year for farmers. One  can water square meters, but not hectares, during a long dry period.

This post marks the end of my ten-days break from posting. It  wasn’t exactly consistent, but still relaxing.

Now I’ve brought my feedreader back to life. But I don’t feel like writing something about China yet. I might start with something Adam Cathcart appears to have been doing in recent days: reading, reading, reading.

And if you haven’t been to Pingtung Country (屏東縣), Taiwan, and aren’t likely to get there anytime soon, the best thing next to going there yourself might be to read this Pingtung-County-sponsored travelogue by Michael Turton.

Another cool and dry morning: moonset, sunrise, April 2011. Day temperatures go beyond 20 degrees C. now, while the latest night frost was only three nights ago.

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