« Western Michigan Weather News

Ag. Weather Outlook 2-03-2014

by Tim Abramowski

MSU’s enviro-weather page is a great way to keep tabs on temperature risks faced by area fruit crops.  Most radio and television reports focus on an official reading -- an accurate measurement at one point on the local map… often an airport.  Enviro-weather has sensors throughout the countryside at various elevations away from structures and other infrastructure like parking lots that tend to radiate any stored heat and bump up readings by a few points or more.  Early this morning a reading near Lawton indicated a temperature of one below zero while about three miles northwest in Teapot Dome the weather station showed a temperature of nearly 11 below.  Extension small fruit educator Mark Longstroth says, while fairly nearby, the Teapot Dome site is about a hundred feet lower and collects cold air flowing off higher elevations.  Check out ‘enviro-weather.msu.edu’ and you’ll have a far more accurate answer as to just how cold it is.  Here’s hoping the coldest air stays down low without rising to where the most cold-sensitive plants can be harmed between now and summer.