weather for the winter

(Question)

I am an urban gardener (and hobby beekeeper) at Bayview Sheppard area. I wonder if you have educated info on what our weather will be like this winter?

(Answer)

 

I wish I could predict the future weather! We might not have lost so many trees to the wind storm of July 2014 or ice storm of December 2013. However, such is not the case. Weather probabilities are calculate using fairly sophisticated methods, and will only tell us what might happen.

Environment Canada calculates temperature and precipitation using these methods, and models what might be in three month periods. They do this by using  climate data from 1981 to 2000. For the next three months, according to the site noted, our area might have slightly higher than normal temperatures and precipitation. To see the modelling:

http://weather.gc.ca/saisons/prob_e.html

Whether or not you believe what is modeled, is up to you. However, there are standards of care that gardeners use to prepare their gardens for the winter:

– indoor plants put out for the summer should be returned indoors by early to mid September

– diseased or mildewy plants should be cut back and put in the garbage – not the compost bin or bags

– water until freeze up, especially shrubs and evergreens

– protect plants at the top of their range when the ground gets colder (eg. rhododendrons)

– mulch sensitive or newly planted plants with about 15cm of mulch

– plant bulbs (the more the merrier)

– empty containers and water barrels

– you can still plant shrubs while the ground is warm

I hope that helps.