The middle of August continued close to normal for precipitation and temperature even though it seemed like it rained all the time, and the high levels of humidity made it feel like it was warmer than it actually was.
There was “only” 10 millimetres of rain in the last week, bringing the month-to-date total to 49 mm in Ormstown. The neighbouring Environment Canada weather stations (Saint-Anicet, Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, and Saint-Clotilde) are showing another 20 mm of precipitation in their tally, but most of that increase comes from earlier in the month and not in the last week.
The forecast for the approaching week is largely rain-free, with a high probability of showers forecast only for Friday evening.
The average temperature for the month now stands at 19.5 degrees Celsius, up slightly from the previous week at 19.3 C but still below the normal for the whole month of 20.2 C. Daytime highs have been below average and nighttime lows slightly above average – a trend that is forecast to continue for the rest of the month and into September.
Despite the average temperatures, the corn heat unit (CHU) count continues to climb ahead after a slow start in May. So far in August there have been 454 CHU, which is slightly lower than the prorated normal (470 CHU) for the same period. Normal CHU for August is 768 CHU, and since the May 11 start date for the heat unit count, the total recorded so far is 2,292 CHU for the 2023 cropping season.
Though the CHU count is slightly below normal, corn and soybean crops in the Valley are in better shape than in southwestern Ontario. A cool start to the season has meant that that region is now approximately 150 CHU behind normal, which is significant given that a heat wave is not expected in September. The Valley had the same number of heat units as London, Ontario, at the end of July – which shows just how far behind that region was earlier in the cropping season.
The haymaking season hasn’t improved much, given the daily dose of showers that has been the standard for the past couple of weeks. The sweet corn is abundant and amazing, there’s still lots of blueberries available, and the sweeter varieties of apples such as Paula Red, Sunrise, and Delcorf are now on the market.