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Effect of Climate Change on Plants (Phenology):

Phenology is the study of the times of recurring natural phenomena. For more about phenology in Ireland, see this website.  Also check out National Biodiversity Ireland.  In recent years I've kept note of the arrival en masse of two common Spring flowers - the King Alfred type daffodil and the large cherry blossom. In table below this is compared with expected date circa 1980.

 

Year
Daffodil
Cherry

1980

Mar 01

Apr28

2005

Feb 10

Apr 12

2006

Feb 28

Apr 23

2007

Feb 23

Apr 14

2008

Feb 20

Apr 24

2009

Mar 01

Apr 18

2010

Mar 18

Apr 26

2011

Feb 28

Apr 10

2012

Feb 18

Apr 08

2013

Mar 01

Apr 29 

2014

Mar 08

 Apr 17  

2015

Feb 28

Apr 19

2016

Feb 24

Apr 26 

2017

Feb 21

 

2017: After a cold start to the month of February temperatures improved considerably after mid month and the bulk of the daffodils emerged a little earlier than normal 

2016: The daffodil season was a very unusual one in 2016. There were reports of some early flowering varieties opening up at New Year or even before. This was was due to the record mild December 2015. However by February things had slowed down considerably and the flowering of the bulk of the crop (At the end of February was only slightly ahead of normal). Spring made only slow progress during late March and much of April, with the result that the large cherry blossoms took until the last week of April to appear, a full 18 days later than in 2012. 

Spring 2013 was a very long one. Even in early May there were still some daffodils in bloom. The arrival of the daffodils was later back in Spring 2010 (following a colder winter) but 2013 has been the latest date in my records for the emergence of the cherry blossom.

The year 2012 in contrast saw a very early start to Spring. After a very mild January, some hard frosts in early February set things back slightly so not quite as early as 2005. However a very mild end to March ensured that the cherry blossoms were out in force by April 8th. This was the earliest date (since I first started documenting these in 2005). A full 18 days earlier than the cold Spring of 2010.

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