The 2019 growing season will go down in the memories of most farmers as one of weather challenge after weather challenge — too dry, too wet, too cool, too cloudy. From Western Canada, across Ontario, and even as far as the east coast, this growing season has swung from one weather extreme to the other, sometimes in the same region.
For an in-depth look at the highs and lows of what’s happened, host of RealAg Radio, Shaun Haney asks Brett Anderson, of AccuWeather, about what meteorological factors were at play this summer, and — most importantly — what farmers can expect for the busy harvest months ahead.
Looking at the weather over the summer months, it was warm, but mainly in the norther parts of the country and even up to Alaska according to Anderson.
“Usually when it’s really warm across the far north, somewhere it’s got to end up being cooler and that typically ends up being across parts of southern Canada,” he says. “That’s kind of the same deal you see in the winter time, usually when we have, say a blocking pattern, meaning high pressure up across the arctic region, where it’s usually warm and drier, that usually means it’s going to be cold and stormy farther to the south.”
Anderson says that was type of pattern we had for the most part this year. On the bright side, when it comes to eastern Canada, he adds he thinks it’s going to be warmer than normal across much of southern Ontario through to southern Quebec and on to Atlantic Canada.
“The bad news is, at least in Ontario through northern Quebec, (is that) I do think we’re going to see a storm track which is going to bring above normal rainfall across, especially along the Great Lakes region, right up into northern parts of Quebec.”
As the end of summer also means the end of thunderstorm season, he adds there may be a bit more than the normal amount in the eastern part of Canada for the month. On the flip side, going a bit farther east, Anderson says he thinks they’re going to have dryer than normal conditions.
For the Prairies, Haney points out a lot of farmers are needing more time for harvest before the white stuff falls from the sky, as some seeded later into the season due to, you guessed it, the weather.
“In the Prairies, we’re looking at near to above normal temperatures for the fall season here,” Anderson says. “Rainfall I think is going to be below average across the southern half of Alberta through southwestern Saskatchewan for the fall season … I would not be surprised though with those cold shots coming in, in October we could see some abnormally cold weather coming in (during the early parts) of October into parts of Saskatchewan and Manitoba.”
Listen to the full interview below with RealAg Radio host, Shaun Haney and AccuWeather’s Brett Anderson.