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When Does Spring Begin For You?


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Posted
  • Location: Birmingham (Solihull), West Midlands
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, thunder, hail & heavy snow
  • Location: Birmingham (Solihull), West Midlands

    I find this quite interesting really because although, meteorology-wise, Spring is supposed to begin on March 1st, I have always gone with the later day of March 21st for the official start date of this season. But, because the weather and temperatures can behave differently from year to year around this period, I wonder should Spring just suddenly start as soon as it reaches the official date(s)?...

    I suppose a good thing about setting dates is that it helps us to keep track of the seasons, and know roughly when to expect changes to the weather.

    For some us, though, Spring probably doesn't arrive until the start of a mild/warm long sunny spell, or when new shoots begin to show on trees and shrubs. Maybe you're one of those people that has to see a particular creature, like a Robin, to know that Spring is in the air.

    Clearly, snow can still be evident during the start of this warmer period with strong North-Westerly winds bringing intense wintry showers, but as longs as I have seen the first dafodils in flower, then I think it's safe to say Spring has started. I do sometimes wait until March 21st depending on what the weather has been doing.

    On the whole I think it is fair to say that we all have different views of Spring's start date, but when does Spring start for you, and when should it begin? smile.gif

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    Posted
  • Location: Wildwood, Stafford 104m asl
  • Weather Preferences: obviously snow!
  • Location: Wildwood, Stafford 104m asl

    Spring should and does begin on 1st march, have 3 months of each season, no way march can be classed as winter, days too long and sun too high

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    Posted
  • Location: Berlin, Germany
  • Weather Preferences: Ample sunshine; Hot weather; Mixed winters with cold and mild spells
  • Location: Berlin, Germany

    I generally go with March 1st simply down to daylight length. By March 1st I'm cycling home from work in just about daylight which signals the end of winter (the darkness has gone on since November- probably why November is often classed as a winter month by many people).

    Certainly it isn't that much warmer yet (although it often can be by now) but night to day temperature variations are marked, the sun feels warm and the days end early evening instead of mid afternoon - to me that's spring!

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

    Perhaps mainly due to my long-standing interest in meteorology, I've always tended to stick by the meteorological definitions, so I think of the 1st March as the first day of spring. If cold snowy weather persists during March, then I see it as a cold/wintry start to spring.

    In March the increase in daylight hours is appreciable and average daytime highs rise by about 2-3C.

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    Posted
  • Location: Whaley Bridge - Peak District
  • Location: Whaley Bridge - Peak District

    Meteorologically Spring begins for me when the first Convective showers of the season begin, to know that CAPE rather than SST is the cause of Convective Activity over the mainland once again.

    However I do also look out for the natural activity such as Wasps (which i've already seen surprisingly, even this far North), Daffodils appearing, Buds on the Tree's and the arrival of the first Summer Birds.

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    Posted
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts
  • Weather Preferences: Rain/snow, fog, gales and cold in every season
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts

    Perhaps mainly due to my long-standing interest in meteorology, I've always tended to stick by the meteorological definitions, so I think of the 1st March as the first day of spring. If cold snowy weather persists during March, then I see it as a cold/wintry start to spring.

    Agree with all of that, TWS. You've neatly summed up my approach to the matter.

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    Posted
  • Location: Evesham, Worcs, Albion
  • Location: Evesham, Worcs, Albion

    Spring starts when the sun rises due east and sets due west and spends exactly 12 hours crossing the sky :p One of the 4 days of the year that anyone can identify without recourse to clocks or calendars.

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    Posted
  • Location: Milton Keynes MK
  • Weather Preferences: anything extreme or intense !
  • Location: Milton Keynes MK

    I like to think of the first day of spring as being March 1st as this conveniently slots the four seasons very neatly into quarters of the year, Spring being March to May. Although having said that I do take the Vernal Equinox as being the 'proper' start to the season and this is not until the 20th day of this month. Either way it may officially be spring but this won't necessarily mean it feels like it, I think nature has the last say in when spring really begins and this year there are only a few small signs that it has started to take place. Yes, I have got some snowdrops in flower but for me the full flush of spring is bright yellow daffodils in bloom on the road sides, catkins on the hazle trees and bluebells in the woods, the smell of grass that has started to grow green again and the sight of lambs in the fields, for me this is when I know spring has really sprung!

    Ali smile.gif

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    Posted
  • Location: Brighton (currently)
  • Location: Brighton (currently)

    Spring never arrives for me! I live in the fantasy land of eternal winter! lol

    Seriously though, I see the 1st of March as the beginning of spring, but this also depends on how many signs of spring exist! This year there's certainly a delayed start here, even the daffodills need another week or two before they open. I find this very pleasing especially compared to some previous years when they were blossoming as early as early February!

    Karyo

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    Posted
  • Location: Dublin Coast, Ireland
  • Location: Dublin Coast, Ireland

    Spring officially starts on March 1st in the world of meteorology, though in pre- Net Weather days a certain moderator on TWO used to get very aggressive in his belief that Spring did not begin until March 21st, and woe betide anyone who disagreed with him!

    In Ireland, we were all taught in primary school, that Feb 1st is the first day of Spring; May 1st is start of Summer, etc. This is based on the old pagan Celtic Calendar. Wiki: Irish Calendar

    So, if you were to ask random people in an Irish street when Spring begins, the most likely answer you will get is "February 1st".dry.gif

    Some of our TV weather presenters often try to point out that these dates are all a month too early, especially during February, when the members of the public start moaning about 'unseasonal' cold weather in "Spring". wallbash.gif

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    Posted
  • Location: Madrid, Spain (Formerly Telford)
  • Location: Madrid, Spain (Formerly Telford)

    I usually class 1st - 20th March as being a half way line between Winter & Spring where the days are getting longer and the sun's stronger but still possible for very cold weather aswell, aka its the mini season of 'Sprinter' :p

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    Spring should and does begin on 1st march, have 3 months of each season, no way march can be classed as winter, days too long and sun too high

    Surely by your theory winter should be centred around the winter solstice? :p:)

    I think in the US they follow solstice to equinox, which can often make more sense. I suppose it depends where you live and what weather types are most common at which times of year. Splitting every location into the same 4 perfect seasons is asking too much of a classification system. For example, in my location I would feel more confident about the first week of March having a greater potential for snow than the first week of December. I would also be more confident about April/May/June providing the sunniest and driest weather of the year out of any 3 month period so to me that is more like summer than June/July/August.

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    Posted
  • Location: Berlin, Germany
  • Weather Preferences: Ample sunshine; Hot weather; Mixed winters with cold and mild spells
  • Location: Berlin, Germany

    I think March 1st - 21st is spring but really equally belongs to both winter and spring (winter dominates, with inklings of spring). Same as 1st - 21st Sept is both summer and autumn (summer dominates with inklings of autumn).

    The other two differ - I find 1st - 21st June is definitely summer as the days are long and the weather can be hot (although often isn't).

    December is definitely winter right through - it's cold & dark (Dec 20th def doesn't feel like autumn!). To be honest I'd go as far as putting late November in that category too as it's so dark and often cold too. May, although very light is still prone to being chilly at times hence doesn't fall into the summer category.

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    Posted
  • Location: South East Cambridgeshire 57m ASL
  • Location: South East Cambridgeshire 57m ASL

    For me, it really depends on the weather itself and not the actual date. The past few days have been very winter like; has been days when the strengthening sun has been felt and been pleasant, there hasnt been proper Spring weather to my standards (Widespread double figure maxima's) so far. I class the last half of November as winter, because of the short daylight hours. But I do agree that Spring starts on the 1st March if you are speaking meteorologically.

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    Posted
  • Location: Shrewsbury
  • Location: Shrewsbury

    I think I've posted before about how I believe there are more than 4 seasons to be distinguished here in west/central Britain; although the precise dates vary somewhat they're pretty reliable indicators. I won't post them again (not least because I can't remember off the top of my head the names I gave them), but they certainly split the late Feb/Mar period (often cold but dry and sunny, with frequent but short-lived snow) from midwinter (when snow can lie for days) and late autumn/early winter (dull and wet with snow rare).

    I've seen old almanacs referring to spring as Feb-Mar-Apr as per the old Celtic calendar, saying the Mar-Apr-May is an American viewpoint! But what always springs (no pun) to mind when this topic comes up is this old Anglo-Saxon poem that I remember from university:

    http://www8.georgetown.edu/departments/medieval/labyrinth/library/oe/texts/a15.html

    Winter byð cealdost,

    lencten hrimigost* (he byð lengest ceald),

    sumor sunwlitegost (swegel byð hatost),

    Which reads "Winter be coldest, spring frostiest (there be the longest cold); summer sun-shiniest (there air be hottest)"- many people are at a loss to explain the comments about spring. Perhaps it is a reference to the frequent bright, cold frosty weather of Feb/Mar as opposed to cold wet windy Dec/Jan; the "longest cold" explained by the fact that this can persist for weeks, while the "topplers" of early winter are gone in a few days? Was this dry, frosty early spring even more apparent then (cf. Chaucer's "droghte of Marche" for another reference) Worth noting that the word for "spring" ("lencten") derives from "long/length" and is thought to refer to lengthening days, which become apparent well before March 21st.

    *"Rime" as in frost derives from this word.

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    Posted
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl
  • Location: Windermere 120m asl

    I take Spring as starting on the 1st March, though I very much don't expect full spring weather conditions to begin until the end of the month, the first half of March in the north and especially over high ground often has a wintry flavour.

    First half of March is similiar to first half of Sept often a hangover from the season just gone in terms of weather and usually out of sync with what would normally be expected of the meteorological season it falls within. However, the key factor dictating when the spring begins is the ever increasing daylight, March is as light as September and very much has that 'spring' feeling, whereas Sept has that autumn feeling with the rapidly fading light.

    Nature also plays a key part, signs of spring often show there hand in Feb with catkins and crocuses and then daffodils, this year the season is very late, daffodils in an average year would be in full bloom now, probably be after the 21s before we see any this year, so it does feel very delayed, should be a nice easter with the daffs in full early bloom rather than showing lacklustre colour and decay as they tend to have done in recent years especially when easter has been late.

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    Posted
  • Location: Birmingham (Solihull), West Midlands
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, thunder, hail & heavy snow
  • Location: Birmingham (Solihull), West Midlands

    I like to think of the first day of spring as being March 1st as this conveniently slots the four seasons very neatly into quarters of the year, Spring being March to May. Although having said that I do take the Vernal Equinox as being the 'proper' start to the season and this is not until the 20th day of this month. Either way it may officially be spring but this won't necessarily mean it feels like it, I think nature has the last say in when spring really begins and this year there are only a few small signs that it has started to take place. Yes, I have got some snowdrops in flower but for me the full flush of spring is bright yellow daffodils in bloom on the road sides, catkins on the hazle trees and bluebells in the woods, the smell of grass that has started to grow green again and the sight of lambs in the fields, for me this is when I know spring has really sprung!

    Ali smile.gif

    Indeed. I think sometimes although the official date has arrived, Spring may still be hiding around the corner, or has already greeted us before the actual day.

    Spring does seem to be taking its time this year, but the dry days since the start of March has been helping to make it feel Spring-like out their, despite the fact the temperatures have been on the cool side.

    In Ireland, we were all taught in primary school, that Feb 1st is the first day of Spring; May 1st is start of Summer, etc. This is based on the old pagan Celtic Calendar. Wiki: Irish Calendar

    So, if you were to ask random people in an Irish street when Spring begins, the most likely answer you will get is "February 1st".dry.gif

    Some of our TV weather presenters often try to point out that these dates are all a month too early, especially during February, when the members of the public start moaning about 'unseasonal' cold weather in "Spring". wallbash.gif

    Wow. cool.gif

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    Posted
  • Location: Near Heathrow, London
  • Weather Preferences: Mediterranean climates (Valencia is perfect)
  • Location: Near Heathrow, London

    Spring is 1st March - 31st May, but that doesn't mean that Springlike weather is only in this period. For example, last year, the 2nd half of February was very Springlike, and this year we still haven't really had a taste of Spring yet. In my mind, I have different opinions of each season. I often class up to September 21st as Summer, because the days are still warm and mostly in the low 20s still, and we can still get hot weather. I also sometimes find that the second half of May can be very summerlike, sometimes the whole of May, again because of the hot weather that can happen.

    In my mind, these are the dates that I associate with the particular season's weather type.

    Winter - Late November to late February

    Spring - late February to mid May

    Summer - Mid May to mid September

    Autumn - Mid September to late November

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    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

    I didn't find the second half of Feb 2009 particularly springlike- but that may be a matter of taste, whether it's an association with warmth and sunshine or just warmth on its own! But indeed, February can provide springlike weather regardless of one's definition of springlike- for instance some parts had warmth and sunshine reaching summer-like proportions on the 13th February 1998. More recently, the 9th February 2008 in Norwich reached 16C in bright sunshine, while Tyneside had 14C and sunshine.

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    Posted
  • Location: West Somerset
  • Location: West Somerset

    March 1st.

    March can't be classed as a winter month or it will push December into an Autumn month if we keep 3 months to each season. (mind you who set up the 3 months to each season?)

    March is a month of new growth, longer daylight hours and the beginning of planting ready for harvest (yes, Farmer here!) If you see planting in fields around at the moment it may be 'Spring Barley' or 'Spring Wheat'.

    Saying that, we are not planting our spuds at the moment - too cold!! cold.gif

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    Posted
  • Location: just behind Epsom Racecourse and the center of York
  • Location: just behind Epsom Racecourse and the center of York

    Spring starts when the younger people start to shed their winter cloths. Best seen in Covent Garden in London as the guys have just tee onionss and the girls shed the coats for short skirts andtops. We had a rare glimpse of this last week but this week we are back to being covered

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