What Did the Groundhog See (And Does It Matter)?

 
What Did the Groundhog See (And Does It Matter)?

Everyone’s favorite non-human meteorologist, Punxsutawney Phil, made his annual prediction at 7:25 a.m. this morning – six more weeks of winter.

And while some media outlets have played the Grinch this year, calling out Phil on his record (the Washington Post says his accuracy is about as good as a coin flip), there is some evidence that this year, at least, the groundhog may be exactly right.

For starters, it’s beginning to look like winter again for many northern areas of the U.S. A winter storm moved through the I-states into the northeast Sunday and Monday, dumping heavy snow as it went. Some highlighted snowfall totals include:

  • Omaha – 7 inches
  • Des Moines – 11 inches
  • Milwaukee – 11.5 inches
  • Chicago – 19 inches
  • Kalamazoo, Mich. – 20 inches

As for the rest of February and March, AgDay meteorologist Mike Hoffman says winter will close out on a colder-than-normal note for most areas east of the Rockies.

By April, Hoffman is hopeful there's a good chance for cooperative spring planting weather.

“A good chunk of the Corn Belt is expected to be near normal as far as temperatures go,” he says. “So this could be a little better than last year’s start to the growing season, and that’s some good news.”

Farmers have been sharing winter weather stories on the AgWeb discussion forums. Continue the conversation on the “Winter 2014-15” thread.

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