Wednesday 14 March 2012

First daffodil three weeks earlier

Kellie Gutman writes:

Our yearly collaboration with the Paideia School, in Atlanta Georgia has just wrapped up.  Each year they send a pre-written postcard, ready to be filled in with a date, for the first spotting of a blooming daffodil.  All of those who receive cards are within 5 miles of U.S. Route 1, which stretches from the southern tip of Florida to the northern tip of Maine.  As the cards return to the school, they are used by the  9- and 10-year olds to plot the advance of spring on a map.  When all the cards are in they use their maths skills to figure out the rate at which spring advances.

This year the winter was unseasonably warm on the east coast. In Boston, where the snowfall average is 41.3 inches, we have received only 9.1 inches.  This is only a tenth of an inch more than the least snowiest winter on record.  

Last year the first daffodil was spotted on April 5th.  This year it was three and a half weeks earlier on March 12.  We will have to wait until all the cards have been returned to see if spring in general was much earlier this year.

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