Frost free season approaches

May is here which means it won’t be long before Jack Frost visits Atlantic Canada for the last time this spring.

Mid to late May is typically when the last frost arrives in Greater Moncton, early in the month for Halifax and late April for Yarmouth.

Early to mid June dates are normal for most of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Last year in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, frost appeared as late as early June which proved disastrous for grape, blueberry and strawberry farmers.

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Powerful winds pummel Maritimes

Tree topples over following powerful winds, 04 Nov 2018 (NB Power)

An intense low pressure system moving up from the U.S. Eastern Seaboard brought heavy rain and strong winds to the Maritimes overnight.

The powerful hurricane-force gusts knocked out electricity to more than 100,000 customers in New Brunswick during the height of the storm.

Temperatures were very mild thanks to a southerly flow with highs exceeding 20°C in some areas including a new record of 21.7°C in Cheticamp.

Rainfall amounts (mm):

  • Kejimkujik, NS  93
  • Alma, NB  85
  • Greater Moncton  69
  • Fredericton  64
  • Saint John  60
  • Summerside, PEI  58
  • Halifax Stanfield  45

Wind gusts (km/h):

  • Bouctouche, NB  119
  • North Cape, PEI  117
  • Greater Moncton  110
  • North Mountain, NS  108
  • Grand Etang, NS  106
  • Fredericton  102
  • Saint John  100
  • Halifax Stanfield  100

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Michael partly to blame for rain

Fall foliage in Centennial Park, Moncton, 13 Oct 2018 ( Dearing)

Starting late Wednesday and lasting into Friday, a warm front and low pressure system eventually combined with moisture streaming northward from Tropical Storm Michael.

As these two systems began to interact, a significant amount of rain fell over parts of the Maritimes.

Rainfall summary in millimetres as of Saturday 5am ADT:

  • Doaktown: 47.2
  • Greater Moncton Airport: 39.4
  • Fredericton: 36.2
  • Saint John: 35.6
  • Grand Manan: 34.5
  • Halifax Stanfield Airport: 55.4
  • Yarmouth: 70.4
  • Kejimkujik: 47.7

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

A chilly start!

It may have been the warmest summer in the Maritimes in almost a century but some parts of the region woke up to below freezing temperatures and frost this morning!

That means some areas had a growing season which barely lasted 100 days since the last spring frost for many was 04 June.

Greater Moncton was definitely chilly with an early morning low of 3.0°C which was close to the record low of 1.1°C from 1956.

Here are some of the nippy overnight lows:

  • Edmundston, NB  -2.0°C
  • Woodstock, NB  -0.8°C
  • Red Pines, NB  -0.7°C
  • Fredericton, NB  0.1°C
  • Upper Stewiacke, NS  -0.4°C
  • Maple Plains, PEI  1.4°C

B.C. wildfire smoke in the Maritimes!

The sun becomes an orange ball due to wildfire smoke, SE Calgary, AB, 14 Aug 2018 (Dearing)

British Columbia is more than 4,000 kilometres away from New Brunswick but that hasn’t stopped forest fire smoke from making its way across Canada.

On Friday afternoon, Environment Canada issued a special air quality statement: A plume of smoke from fires in Western Canada is moving at high altitude across the Maritimes today causing hazy skies and a reddish sun.

This smoke is not expected to reach the surface or affect air quality in our region and the plume will move off to the east tonight.

The British Columbia Wildfire Service says more than 600 fires are burning in the province with many regions still under air quality advisories.

Record highs in the Maritimes

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Jones Lake, west end Moncton, 18 May 2017 (Dearing)

Summer-like air enveloped the Maritime Provinces with new record high temperatures set in all three provinces yesterday.

Environment Canada says more than a dozen communities in New Brunswick hit new maximums for the date including St. Stephen at 34.0 C (hot spot in Canada), Fredericton at 33.0 C and both Woodstock and Edmundston at 32.0 C.

While the thermometer reached a record-breaking 30.5 C at the Greater Moncton International Airport, the overall 18 May record for Moncton is 31.7 C from 1918.

In Nova Scotia, new records were set in Greenwood and Kejimkujik Park at 32.0 C while Summerside, Prince Edward Island warmed up to 26.3 C.

Temperatures surpass 20 C in the Maritimes

Signs of spring, downtown Moncton, 10 April 2017 (Dearing)


For the first time this spring, temperatures in the Maritime Provinces climbed to 20 C and higher yesterday.

In Greater Moncton, the thermometer hit 20.6 C but wasn’t quite as warm as the record of 26.7 C from 1945.

Grand Manan Island was the hotspot in New Brunswick with a new record high of 20.8 C.

Several locations in Nova Scotia were also the warmest so far this season with 23.1 C recorded at Halifax Stanfield Airport although it was much cooler in downtown Halifax.

A new record was set in Kejimkujik Park at 25.8 C which was the hotspot in Canada.

Snowy winter throughout the Maritimes

Typical home hidden by huge snowbanks in NW Moncton, 28 Feb 2015 (Clow)

Typical home hidden by huge snowbanks in NW Moncton, 28 Feb 2015 (Clow)


Snowfall totals have been mighty impressive this winter throughout the Maritime Provinces.

With meteorological winter now over (December, January and February), here is a rundown of the amounts…

Moncton 333 cm

Saint John 328 cm

Charlottetown 326 cm

Fredericton 320 cm

Halifax 193 cm

Maritimes covered in white

Courtesy NASA, 17 February 2015

Courtesy NASA, 17 February 2015


An amazing shot of the Maritime Provinces captures a region covered in snow with Prince Edward Island almost in camouflage given the ice covered water surrounding it.

While the Northumberland Strait and the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence are mostly ice covered, the Bay of Fundy and the Atlantic Ocean are virtually ice-free.

Frost advisory for Maritime Provinces

Lilacs in bloom (file)

Lilacs are finally showing blossoms in Greater Moncton (file)

A frost advisory is not too unusual for late May in New Brunswick but it is rare for the alert to be spread across all of the Maritime Provinces.

Environment Canada says even areas near the coast, which are typically milder overnight, will likely have frost tomorrow morning.

Farmers in the region are not too concerned since many are just now planting crops due to the cold, wet spring.

Garden and greenhouse centres are reporting a slow start thanks to the inclement weather.