Cold snap, AKA “dogwood winter,” won’t last long but likely not last cold snap of spring


(WOWK) — As April starts with a strong cold snap, freeze warnings and even snow, many people in the area are calling this cold air intrusion, “dogwood winter.”

The term has been used over the years to describe the cold snaps that come after the dogwood trees bloom. Several flowering trees are already well in bloom so it may be difficult to pin down exactly which kind of “winter” to call this chill.

Flowering trees in bloom in the region from Angie Gorman

There are many other names given to such cold snaps that can show up as late as early May in our area. Among the names given to other cold snaps are “redbud winter” and “blackberry winter,” named after the predominant budding plants in that time frame.

As for the weather leading up to Easter in 2021, there will be 3 nights below 32 degrees (starting Wednesday night) so people should cover plants the best way they see fit. Daytime highs will warm back up above the normal of 61 degrees by Easter Sunday and continue well above normal the following week.

Statistically, the last killing freeze kicks in late in April through the first week of May depending mainly on elevation. The growing season starts later in areas higher in elevation in the West Virginia mountains.

Average last hard freeze dates for planting. A killing freeze can happen past these dates but this is the average time of when it’s safe to plant

The week after Easter appears to be fairly warm. Looking past that another week, the 8-14 day temperature outlook comes out with equal chances for above and below normal temperatures at this point. Usually that means look for a short cold snap and a quick warm spell that end up averaging out.

Outlook for temperatures April 8-14

Traditionally the WOWK region sees a good three cold snaps from about the end of March through May but none last too long and there are no major winter storms or massive, long-lasting Arctic outbreaks in the forecast.

Just bundle up when the cold air moves in for brief appearances and stay ahead of the forecast by downloading the StormTracker 13 weather app any time for free right here.

Follow Spencer Adkins on Facebook and Twitter for the latest weather developments.

For local forecasts, weather alerts, live VIPIR Radar and more, download the FREE StormTracker 13 Weather App from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store.

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