Spring green and potential overnight frost

NOW: Spring green and potential overnight frost

April showers bring May flowers, but they're also bringing us vibrant greens and yellows as more leaves are appearing on Michiana's plants.

The month of March was relatively dry, but April is right on track with rain totals. As of April 12, South Bend picked up 1.16 inches of rain for the month. Normally by this time, we should have around 1.24 inches of rain, so we are behind by less than a tenth of an inch.

What's this mean for your lawn? Your grass will likely look greener and you'll start to notice even more leaves on trees soon.

Take a look at the difference on the Weather Patio's tree from Wednesday to Saturday.

On Wednesday, some of the buds were begging to bloom into flowers

By Saturday, the whole tree was flowering beautifully

The spring green-up, or signs of the first leaves on plants, starts in the southern United States where it's warmer. They saw leaves as early as February. In Michiana, our first leaves were early April, which puts us just slightly ahead of leaf schedule.

Approximate first leaf date in the United States, spring 2021 USA National Phenology Network

With the green-up, it's important to watch for frost or freeze conditions in the forecast. Temperatures don't have to dip below freezing in order for patchy frost to form. Temperatures in the mid 30s, along with clear skies and calm winds, often lead to frost overnight.

Freezes and hard freezes have a more negative impact on spring plants, and can even be deadly for them. Luckily, our temperatures likely won't dip to those levels, as we stay in the mid 30s.

If you have any outdoor potted plants, think about bringing them indoors overnight Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Any plants in the ground that may be susceptible to frost can be covered to help protect them. A blanket is an easy way to do this.

Overnight temperatures look to improve into the high 30s by the weekend.


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