General Weather Situation

Well, what an amazing week for us, with record high temperatures in England, Wales and I think Ireland for this time of year.
It’s surreal to be cycling as I was last night, at 9 p.m in a tee shirt and shorts in the first week of October, with the temperature sitting at 23°C !.
Lee at Mid Kent Golf Club (Gravesend), I think you were officially the warmest spot, at 29.9°C, so I hope you’ve still got your irrigation on 🙂
Now I know that wasn’t the case for everyone with rain for most of Ireland, particularly the west last week, as that low pressure mentioned last Monday sneaked in and gave significant rainfall, but Dublin had I think the hottest day of the year last week, amazing..

From a Peak to a Trough

Last weeks weather diagram (included in my post) showed how the warm air from Africa was filling in below an undulation in the jetstream, well later this week, we’re going to get the reverse, as cold air forces down in a trough, bringing strong north winds, much cooler air for a few days, before I think it’ll revert to high pressure, but we’ll see…

So for the start of this week, the very warm air over the south of the U.K is gradually pushed south and eastwards, by the arrival of a cool, low pressure system, which will initially swing brisk, ever strengthening winds round to the west and by Thursday / Friday, the winds will be very strong and from the North-West, so it’ll be much cooler.
It wouldn’t surprise me if we get hill snow in Scotland at the end of this week !..

They’ll be some moisture associated with this low pressure system and I expect rain showers, which are currently affecting Scotland, to push down south over the week.
The first rainfront will arrive in the west (Ireland, Wales, Scotland) on Wednesday and these showers will push south and east over Wednesday night / Thursday, so all areas have a risk of rain, and won’t it be welcome if we get it!. The next rainfront is projected to arrive at in North-West Ireland on Saturday and push south and eastwards through Sunday, so again this could affect all areas.

Outlook

At the moment, the projections are for this cold snap to only last a couple of days and from Saturday / Sunday, temperatures will start to recover as we lose the northerly winds and warmer air pushes into Ireland, Wales and England. At the moment, next week looks nice and settled, but one word of caution, the weather patterns are extremely volatile at present and it wouldn’t surprise me if it changes again, such is the level of volatility.

Agronomic Notes

The very warm temperatures have resulted in some particularly stressy conditions late last week and worsened the already dire drought situation in the Midlands of England, with E.T rates reported up to 2.5 mm per day and next to no rainfall in the south of the U.K.

Surprisingly, disease activity, with respect to Fusarium did not seem to increase dramatically and I think this was mainly linked to the lack of moisture (once the heavy dews had evaporated) and the fact that Fusarium as a fungus goes dormant above 20°C. (Didn’t know this before)

Although Fusarium has been relatively inactive, other diseases not normally associated with late Sept / early Oct have been, so late Take-All, Fairy Rings and Thatch Fungus have all been making an appearance. I’ve also seen alot of ectoparasitic nematode activity, particularly Spiral Nematodes and these are often confusing to diagnose because of the irregularity of the symptoms. When we’re up and running on my blog, I’m going to be able to post pictures there in a gallery so you can look to see if any problems on your turf match up.

Fertility-wise, light-rate liquids have been the order of the day, keeping the plant ticking on, but don’t expect much to happen this week because it’s going to be quite a shock to the plant going from nearly 30°C to close to 10°C in the matter of a couple of days. I expect this knock the colour out of turf areas, it’ll also slow up fungicide uptake, but if we do settle down weather-wise next week, then will be the time to spray, failing that, early this week before the plant shuts down, however the strength of the wind will make this difficult from tomorrow onwards….

All the best and don’t forget to click the subscribe link when it comes through…that is if you won’t to continue receiving this info.,…:)
Mark Hunt