The Lilacs Bloomed in March

lilacs bloomingby Bob Doublin, Deep Green Resistance Seattle

Here in Seattle, the lilacs bloomed in March this year. I saw three or four bushes full of flowers this past Wednesday and Thursday. That was April 1 and 2 but it clearly took a few days to look like that. Normally it’s the third or fourth week of April. And then Friday morning as I walked to get breakfast, I noticed that hawthorn trees had tons of flower buds all over them.They were fully formed and ready to burst into bloom; some already had into fully formed flowers. Normally, it’s the second or third week in May before this happens.

March 2015 was our warmest March on record. This was our second month in a row that was the warmest on record. And the fourth month of the last six that was a record (Oct 2014, Dec 2014, Feb 2015, March 2015). A couple were only Sea-Tac records. The feds moved the reporting station from the Downtown Federal Building out to the new International Airport just after WWII.

Recently I joked on a friend’s page after other friends living back East commented on the Winter they’re still having that out here we just finished our fourth month of Spring. And this will continue probably into Summer.

The beautiful Magnolia trees I love to see each Spring bloomed the third or fourth week of February this year. This was four weeks ahead of their normal time of the Spring Equinox. Daffodils were just as early. Most trees in my neighborhood on Capitol Hill have fully leafed;some already having a complete canopy of fully formed leaves grown to their full size. Most years,I don’t see that until mid to late April at the earliest. Last fall, the leaves didn’t turn colors and drop until Halloween or early November. And then most trees had their Winter buds out mid December- we set record highs five of six days then,including an all time December high.

My friend Dale who lives in Albany, Oregon has been telling me about what’s happening down there. He remarked he already has the wood supply for next Winter half-cut. Left over from this past Winter. A friend of his said he only used three or four cords of wood all season it’s been so warm most nights.

These are good articles. Five states have had their warmest Winters on record; Washington, California, Arizona, Nevada, and Utah. Two others, Oregon and Idaho, had their second warmest. (Dating back 120 years of record keeping.) Several others out West were in the top five.

What stands out for me is the length of time all of this is lasting. San Diego has gone 17 consecutive months with above average monthly temperatures. Seattle only had one month below average in 2014, back in February. Since then we have had 13 months in a row with above average temperatures. Here in Seattle. Even the rainy weather lately hasn’t really put us below average. Up until last Spring, where we set a record for rain between March and the end of July (broke it by the end of May), most rainy Springs have been cooler than average. Not so lately.

2014 was the warmest year on record. But 2015 so far is quite simply BLOWING THROUGH that record. Each month of 2015 so far has been quite a bit above the corresponding month of 2014. Here’s the anomalies, first 2014, then 2015: Jan +2.3, +3.0, Feb -1.65, +5.35, March +2.0, +4.05. Weather is always a wild card, but weather service predictions are for more of the same. Can you say global warming?

If you take the record 2014 years as just one 12 month running period, we have set record 12 month running periods for four consecutive months Jan 2014-Dec 2014, Feb 2014-Jan 2015, March 2014- Feb 2015,and Apr 2014-Mar 2015.

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