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Where have the April showers gone?

madpenguinmadpenguin Isle of WightPosts: 2,145

Ash before Oak we're in for a soak,

Oak before Ash we're in for a splash.

Down here on the Isle of Wight we have not had rain for almost a month and nothing significant forecast in the foreseeable future.

I have an Oak and an Ash tree and the Ash is in almost full leaf but the Oak has yet to get started!!

Does the Oak tree foretell a wet summer?


“Every day is ordinary, until it isn't.” - Bernard Cornwell-Death of Kings


  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 3,913
    madpenguin says:

    Does the Oak tree foretell a wet summer?


    See original post

    No it records a dry winter and the saying is based on the tendency for UK weather to conform to the averages - dry winter, wet summer, average rainfall overall. Warm summer, lots of berries on the trees. So berries on the trees 'foretells' a cold winter - overall average temperature for the year.

    Climate change has put the kibosh on most of the weather related sayings - we are consistently beating the averages in all sorts of ways.

    We've not had rain for a month either and our oaks are generally all in leaf but the ash are barely breaking buds. I think that has more to do with ash die-back disease than any weather forecasting ability on the part of the trees.

    Last edited: 23 April 2017 19:11:10

    “This isn't life in the fast lane, it's life in the oncoming traffic.”
    ― Terry Pratchett
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 64,642

    Here in Norfolk the oaks are in full leaf but the ash tree buds are still black and sealed shut.  We've had no real rain for months now.  I'm watering most days and topping the pond up.  

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • BLTBLT Posts: 525

    We only got a sprinkle of a shower yesterday for the first time this month...  Its Global warming..

  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 14,710

    The oak here is just coming into leaf.  There are huge cracks in the clay under it.  We need some rain soon.

    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 22,270

    I dunno.  last spring was so wet and miserable we were all moaning and this year it's dry and we're still moaning.

    Gardeners!!  Never happier than when bemoaning the weather.

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 3,913

    Things you'll never hear a farmer say

    #3 "Can't complain"

    It is an inconvenient time of year to have very low rainfall though - when young plants are trying to get going. The cold snap coming this week has caused a back log in my little polytunnel - things I was hoping would be at least in the sheltered 'hardening off' bit are still inside and I've run out of room.

    Last time we had a very dry spring we then had a really cold wet summer so I'm hoping that pattern doesn't repeat. 

    “This isn't life in the fast lane, it's life in the oncoming traffic.”
    ― Terry Pratchett
  • Joyce21Joyce21 Posts: 15,489

    I suppose we are lucky that we have had plenty of April showers but high winds have been drying out the soil and some watering has been necessary.

    SW Scotland
  • PosyPosy Isle of Wight.Posts: 2,133

    I'm on the IW, too, Madpenguin. I don't remember a Spring as dry as this since 1989 when we moved to our present house. It was followed by a very dry summer and we didn't get back to normal until the winter.

  • LiriodendronLiriodendron Scariff, County Clare, IrelandPosts: 6,353

    My understanding is that oak trees come into leaf in response to temperature, unlike the ash which responds to day length.  In Northumberland where I lived before moving to west Yorks, ash trees didn't leaf up until the end of May or first week in June.  The oaks were almost always out first there, as here, whatever weather followed.  And with climate change I suppose it's likely to be more and more the case.

    The soil is still damp here in the Pennines...

    "The one who plants trees, knowing that he will never sit in their shade, has at least started to understand the meaning of life."  Rabindranath Tagore
  • AHRAHR Sheffield Posts: 356

    We have had one shower in the last 4 weeks in Suffolk 

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