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Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 19 2017 at 1:09 AM

Kathi and Michael Rock  (Login kathirock)
Hummingbird Member 2006

After record highs in the 80's earlier this week and a stormy night last night, a strong cold front came through and suddenly it's like living in a different world. The positive aspect of the cold front is that it brought hummingbirds---we had our busiest day of the hummingbird season today with repeated visits of males and females and our first humm chase---that was so exciting and gratifying, especially given that we have little blooming for them right now.

Now in the wee hours it is cold and windy and I just saw a brief snow shower and we are expected to have temperatures that feel like the mid-30's by early morning. We have all of our tender plants outside and I can only hope that they will be ok.

You just never know in the Upper Midwest!

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Michael and Kathi Rock
Madison, WI
Zone 5

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Dan
(Login hawkeye_wx)
Hummingbird lover 2009

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 19 2017, 9:38 AM 

It's cold here as well this morning, mid 40s, rainy, and windy.

It's good to hear you have nice hummer action up there. I have seen at least one hummer every day since the 12th, but only one or two brief sightings per day, with none first thing in the morning or anytime in the evening. I haven't seen a male since the 14th. I'm also having another dead oriole season, and haven't seen any other migrants, so it's pretty quiet. At least all my plants are in the ground.
East-central Iowa
Zone 5a


    
This message has been edited by hawkeye_wx on May 19, 2017 9:38 AM


 
 
Indy Steve
(Login SteveWnindy)
Hummingbird lover 2007

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 19 2017, 9:57 AM 

Wow hate to hear the news about the cold temps in the upper midwest . It is supposed to get in the 60s here next week dont think it will get colder than that, but weather is always subject to change.
Steve
Martinsville In.
Zone 6

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Alex
(Login Sweeper13)
Hummingbird Lover 2014

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 19 2017, 10:15 AM 

UHG..U have it worst then us. I was out cutting grass at 6pm and the temp dropped 18 degrees.Ran in for a sweater.
Alex
Northlake, Il.
Click for Forecast for 60164 from weatherUSA


    
This message has been edited by Sweeper13 on May 19, 2017 10:16 AM


 
 

Kathi and Michael Rock
(Login kathirock)
Hummingbird Member 2006

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 20 2017, 1:35 AM 

It is going to be very cold for the next week. We currently have the heat on in the house and I brought in any tropicals and other tender plants that were not yet planted. Salvias already in the ground are on their own.

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Michael and Kathi Rock
Madison, WI
Zone 5

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Tom M
(Login TomnStPete)
Hummingbird Lover 2014

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 20 2017, 10:10 AM 

Wishing you the best Kathi, how do the plants you brought back in look?

We've had record highs all this past week here, 97 in Tampa on Wednesday. The good news for us is that we've had rain the past two days and I think our drought is over, rainy season started 2-3 weeks early.
St Pete Tom
USDA 10a, Heat 10

 
 
Dan
(Login hawkeye_wx)
Hummingbird lover 2009

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 20 2017, 10:49 AM 

It's pretty brutal yet again this morning... mid 40s, rain, wind. This is as bad as it gets in mid May. The heat is back on after running the AC a couple days ago.
East-central Iowa
Zone 5a

 
 
Donald
(Login Ornithophilous)
Hummingbird Member 2006

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 20 2017, 11:42 AM 

We've had 4 inches of rain this week, with another inch coming today. Temperatures will be stuck in the upper 40's and low 50's another couple of days. My beds of cardinal flower and jewelweed love the extra moisture, the Silene regia not so much.

One of the advantages of working with perennials is that whatever planting one has to do can be done early, well before last frost. Depending on the species, they can even be planted in the fall before the ground freezes. I've got plants in the ground and growing, and I don't have to worry about hardening off plants and shuttling plants in and out of the shade when it gets too hot or in and out of the garage when a frost threatens. I don't have to worry about watering many flats of tender plants every day while I wait for the last frost date and a good day to plant them all out in a rush. This year I've even had time to do some birding and trout fishing on the evenings and weekends, which I never had time to do in years past when I was tending annuals waiting to get into the ground.

I know that perennial gardens aren't for everyone, and it certainly greatly limits your choices of plants, especially in the Upper Midwest, but if you find yourself stressed out this time of year worried about your annuals that you can't get into the ground yet, you might want to consider turning over some more of your garden to hardy perennials.

Don
Zone 4 Red Wing MN
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Kathi and Michael Rock
(Login kathirock)
Hummingbird Member 2006

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 22 2017, 12:58 AM 

It continues to be very cold, windy, and wet here with temperatures in the 50's during the day and the low 40's at night. Our heat in the house is still on. We were at a local nursery shopping today (some nice finds!) and it was like plant shopping in winter---burr! We have had so much rain and this is when I'm very glad that we have no agastache or penstemon in the ground---they would be dead!!

I heard that it was only 37 degrees in Northern Wisconsin this morning, but hummingbirds came to the feeder bright and early, chattering away---tough little birds!!

Because of the cold and rain, we were not able to accomplish much outside this weekend. It was extremely frustrating to say the least!

We have three more days of cold and some rain before conditions slowly begin to improve. Yay!!

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Michael and Kathi Rock
Madison, WI
Zone 5

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Dylan
(Login utahxericman)
Hummingbird Lover 2016

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 22 2017, 3:31 PM 

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Feeling your pain Michael and Kathi. It has been cold, rainy, and snowy here as well. We are suppose to hit 80 degrees one day this week then more rain and temps in the 60's. I don't mind the cooler temps too much as I know the high 90's are right around the corner...ugh...lol. However, I was fond of the 30 degree day and snow I was out in for most a day last week. I was prepared for the cold but it still wasn't fun.

 
 
Joni
(Login Yodlei44)
Hummingbirder 2008

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 23 2017, 6:53 PM 

In the same boat. I've had heat & air on in the same day multiple times. This is crazy. Wish I would have left the seedlings in & the over-winters out instead. Some seedlings are struggling & especially sad looking are my Eccremocarpus scaber. They germinated & grew so well from the start & then sat there. Figured they needed some good sun but they apparently don't like the cold. We haven't had anything lower than mid 40's & I know consecutive days of that makes plants sulk. Raining most of the day today after weeding all day yesterday in delightful low 70's. I have to jump on weeding after a rain since it seems to really soak in way more than in the past & even though we've had some 2-4" days multiple times this spring, if I wait too long, it's bone dry again.

THIS IS CRAZY!!! Will I have a tomato before Sept.???

Only good thing with rain is that Hummers are at the feeders more.

Joni
Elwood, IL
Zone 5
[linked image]

 
 

Kathi and Michael Rock
(Login kathirock)
Hummingbird Member 2006

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 24 2017, 3:56 PM 

Cold, wet and dreary weather continues here with a daytime temperature of only 53 degrees. We have the heat back on again. It is very depressing---we haven't had a hummingbird sighting in almost two days. This has been our worst spring hummingbird season in 18 years so far!

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Michael and Kathi Rock
Madison, WI
Zone 5

[linked image]

 
 
Indy Steve
(Login SteveWnindy)
Hummingbird lover 2007

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 24 2017, 4:40 PM 

Yes its cool and wet here raining all day but the temps will be going up from here on this next few days.
Steve
Martinsville In.
Zone 6

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Dan
(Login hawkeye_wx)
Hummingbird lover 2009

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 24 2017, 11:43 PM 

I have also had the heat on too often in recent days. The garden could certainly use some sun and warmth. Thankfully, the 7-day forecast is full of low 70s.

Like Kathi, a couple days ago I had two or three hummers visiting the feeders, but I only briefly saw one yesterday and none today. June should bring more consistent activity.
East-central Iowa
Zone 5a

 
 

Kathi and Michael Rock
(Login kathirock)
Hummingbird Member 2006

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

May 25 2017, 1:19 AM 

I finally had a sighting of two hummingbirds and a chase around 4:15 p.m. today, but then nothing after that. There were no sightings yesterday despite hours of watching.

I gardened for about 3 hours in the late afternoon and early evening wearing a fleece-lined hoodie and another coat on top of that. The wind was quite brisk and it felt cold because the soil was so rain-saturated.

I noted that several perennial plants were showing signs of powdery mildew from all of the rain, cool temperatures, and lack of sun and warmth.

We are finally looking a little better over the next week with temperatures in the mid-60's to low 70's, but chance of rain is still there. I never dreamed that I'd be saying "enough rain already"---it's usually just the opposite.



[linked image]
Michael and Kathi Rock
Madison, WI
Zone 5

[linked image]

 
 
Dan
(Login hawkeye_wx)
Hummingbird lover 2009

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

June 7 2017, 11:18 PM 

Well, we've certainly left the cool, damp weather behind. It has been replaced by warm, sunny, and very dry weather. This weekend we are expecting temps well into the 90s. It has been nearly two weeks without rain, and it may be another week before we see any. I'm now having to do a fair amount of watering.
East-central Iowa
Zone 5a

 
 
Ward Dasey
(Login WardDas)
Hummingbird Moderator 2005

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

June 9 2017, 8:48 AM 

Here in NJ the cold weather is finally breaking today and by early next week we could see 90s. While our weather hasn't been anything like Wisconsin lows in the upper 40s for us in early June is wildly out of character.

We also had about 6 inches of rain in May. For the gardens at Palmyra when it came to the microphylla and greggii bloom it was like pouring gas on a fire. Eleven years of working with these species there has taught me something. While they both can handle drought quite well like many semi desert plants (if that is what they are?) they quickly react to rainy conditions. Presumably they learned long ago to respond to inconsistent and spotty rains. After several years of extended spring droughts the message is loud and clear. What a show!

Other plant like the various guaranitica are growing robustly, almost all will flower soon and Argentina Skies already has. I am very interested to see how the two Lilac-colored guaraniticas grown from seed last year will do this year. I was on the fence as to whether they would be worth keeping. Both have spread moderately and one is now around three feet and has spread at bit. Van Remsen is now five feet tall and growing fast.

The fastest to bloom salvia seedling experiment from last is what I guess is Theresia. It started putting out purple blooms weeks ago. A seed started this year in January has been in bloom for a couple of weeks. I may continue to keep trying new seeds for a few years with this one since perfection seems almost with reach. The hybrid may work out to be a very good plant for those looking for a quick bloom who live in short season areas.

 
 
Indy Steve
(Login SteveWnindy)
Hummingbird lover 2007

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

June 9 2017, 9:15 AM 

Like Dan , we are also expecting temps in the 90s the next few dasy. In fact the weather people are saying it will be the hottest streak here since 2013. Must be prepared to water. Since I have a problem faucet Im carring all my water with two 2 gal buckets for tomatoes and flowers, till I can get it fixed.
Steve
Martinsville In.
Zone 6

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Ward Dasey
(Login WardDas)
Hummingbird Moderator 2005

Re: Cold Weather in Wisconsin!!

June 9 2017, 11:24 AM 

Me too, I have to run a hose all the way from the front. But there is another problem, it appears my well pump is dying so until I get it replaced I don't want to water the garden and in any case the pressure is too low. It is always something.

All this rain and an early planting has made for really robust tomatoes. Not so much with the peppers which worry me. The problem for both these crops is disease in excessively long wet weather periods. The conditions are a breeding ground for viruses and some leaf-spot virus has already started on some of the pepper plants. The disease had become so bad in NJ in the past few years that I had to pony up $22.00 for a single seed packet of the latest Rutgers bell pepper hybrid that resists 9 out of 10 types. They need to work on chili peppers and non bell sweet peppers too. The only chili pepper that seems to be immune is Serrano. Naturally we had poor germination on Serrano and ended up with only 3 plants. We could have used 10 because they dry really well and make fantastic chili powder.

And what does this have to do with hummingbirds? Nothing.

 
 
 
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