| || |
Old Farmer's Almanac predictions
September 17, 2012 - Mike Donahey
A recent trip to south central Wisconsin reminded me fall is near.
In that area of the Badger state a few leaves have turned to crimson — a dramatic contrast to the solid dark greens of other trees. Thinking of fall, which debuts Sept. 22, begat thoughts of winter. And thoughts of winter made me think of the Old Farmer’s Almanac’s weather predictions.
I was in luck. On my desk was the 2013 edition, a freebie, courtesy of Yankee Publishing Inc. of Dublin, N.H. “Get hooked on the the 2013 Old Farmer’s Almanac!” read the promotion. I didn’t need an inducement, as I’ve taken time to read editions over the years for the weather and other advice. Originated in 1792, when Washington was president, the 2013 edition marks their 221st, which leads me to believe they know their market. But let’s get to the heart of the matter — the weather. A mild, dry winter is predicted for Iowa, which lies in the Heartland region. This includes portions of South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois and Wisconsin.
“Winter temperatures will be higher than normal, on average, with precipitation and snowfall near normal in the east and below normal in the west,” reported the OFA. “The coldest periods will be late December, early January, and early and mid-February. The snowiest periods will be in mid to late November, mid to late December, early January and early March.”
OFA weather predictions are 80 percent accurate, according to book editors.
Other OFA forecasts: “Consumers are starting to become confident. Spending on autos, travel, luxury — and even housing should be strong,” according Jonathan Dahl, editor in chief, Smart Money. Tidbits: $10,000; the value a mature shade tree adds to a home and 58 percent of people regularly sort their trash for recycling purposes. More tidbits: 2.8 percent of Americans walk to work, 25.3, is the average time commuters spend in getting to work and we're becoming addicted to washing the dog and getting the car repaired at the same place. If you drop a piece of bread on the floor, pick it up and kiss it to avoid bad luck.
OFA is a quaint, yet valuable resource for journalists and non-journalists alike. One farmer's wife said OFA is a great resource for hobby farmers.