facebook
twitter
search
search

Spring came earlier than ever last year in United States

May 16, 2013 at 5:35 AM
Sign up for our Energy Newsletter

WASHINGTON, May 16 (UPI) -- Scientists examining the end of dormancy for flowering plants said spring arrived earlier in 2012 than ever before, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The USGS said March 2012 set records in terms of warm temperatures seen as promoting spring flowering across much of the country.

Scientists looked at dormancy patterns and other indices and compared them with historical data for flowering of plant species like lilacs to get an idea of how warming influences leafing and flowering.

Changing weather patterns influenced the start of the spring growing season by as much as 30 days when compared to a baseline for the 20th century, the USGS reported.

Fruit trees in the Midwest and Great Lakes region began blooming early in the season because of high temperatures. The crop was nearly wiped out, however, by late-season frosts in April.

Last year was the ninth warmest on record and the 27th consecutive year that global temperatures were higher than the 1961-90 average, the World Meteorological Organization reports.

The USGS said warming trends means less snowpack, which can influence flooding and wildfire trends.

Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Trending Stories
Chelsea Clinton accidentally calls Bernie 'President Sanders'
Watch every star-studded Super Bowl commercial of 2016
Susan Sarandon responds to Piers Morgan criticizing cleavage
Two Virginia Tech students plotted 13-year-old's death, prosecutors said
Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice got classified email on private accounts