Peter Finlayson, Ormstown Weatherman
Though September turned out ‘normal,’ the summer of 2021 was the warmest in the last 54 years (just), and October has started out far too wet.
September was a very warm month until last week, when daytime temperatures were well below average. Consequently, the month ended up right on the button for average temperature, coming in at 16.4 degrees C, with normal being 16.2 C.
Despite the drop in average temperature at the end of the month, the heat unit (CHU) count kept ticking along, with September bringing in 580 CHU, just slightly above the normal of 569 CHU. This brings the season’s total (since May 10) to 3329 CHU, which is already above the normal of 3189 CHU.
The rains did come in the second half of the month, especially the last week; total precipitation ended up at 84 mm for Ormstown (which is average), 81 mm for Saint-Anicet, and 71 mm for L’Acadie and Sainte-Clothilde.
Precipitation continued to vary according to location with the downpour that enveloped the entire region for the first two days of October. Ormstown and Saint-Anicet received 30-32 mm of rain, while communities to the north and east received only half that amount.
Finally, 2021 turned out to be the warmest on local record, just beating 2010 by 0.02 degrees. Despite the month of July being one of the coolest, the summer months (April to September) recorded an average temperature of 16.95 C, mainly due to warmer-than-average May, June and August. If July had been even close to normal, 2021 would have been a record year by far.
The corn crop is in excellent shape, and the cobs are drying quickly (26 per cent) even before there’s any frost. Given that the nighttime temperatures will again be running much warmer than normal, there’s no killing frost in the forecast until mid-October. Some farmers, thinking that the last cut of hay was THE last cut of hay, may be tempted to squeeze another few bales out of the fields as the forage plants keep growing – as do the lawns, as those who have to cut them have noticed!