Monday, 23 February 2009

Spring arrives early in UK

Spring is on the way, with Britons having enjoyed a weekend of sunny weather and forecasters predicting that the bitter, snowy conditions of the past few months are gone.

Much of the country basked in sunshine and unexpected warmth on Saturday with temperatures reaching a peak of 57F (14C) in Durham.

With daffodils, crocuses and snowdrops now in flower and farms reporting their first lambs of the year, it appears that the weather has finally turned.

A Met Office spokesman said that the mild conditions would continue for the next week, with no return to the blizzards and freezing weather that brought parts of the country to a standstill earlier in the month.

"The temperatures were not unusually high for this time of year; it's just that the weather has been so cold of late that it came as a pleasant change," he said.

"For the next week it will be a bit more mixed with a bit less sunshine but temperatures will remain mild and there will be no return to the wintry weather.

"There will be some wintry showers over the north of Scotland but nothing like what we have seen over the last few months."

The Met Office defines spring as beginning on March 1, although it officially starts on the night of March 20 into March 21, the vernal equinox, when the day and night are of equal length.

In the meantime many nurseries in the South West of England are counting the damages caused by the extended freeze, particularly amongst those specializing in palms and other tropical plants.

Temperatures in the polytunnel are rising and shortly we will know which Canna stock plants survived the winter. It is amazing how we are affected by sunshine, just a few warm days and so much negativity evaporates with anticipation of what is to come.

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