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Posted at 7:30 PM ET, 11/ 9/2010

National Weather Service: Growing season over

By Jason Samenow

PM Update: Sunny and 60+ tune keeps playing

From the National Weather Service Office in Sterling, Va.:

After consultation with agricultural extension agents across the Baltimore/Washington Weather Forecast Office's county warning area ... it has been determined that the growing season for frost and freeze sensitive vegetation has ended.
For those areas such as St. Marys county Maryland where a hard freeze over the majority of the county has not occurred ... the lack of daylight and the end of harvest are the primary reasons for declaring the growing season over.
Thus... the Baltimore/Washington National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office will not issue anymore frost advisory and/or freeze watch and warning products until the growing season starts again next spring.

Interestingly, it's not only St. Mary's County which has yet to record a freeze. The lowest reading at Reagan National Airport thus far this fall is only 36 (from November 6).

By Jason Samenow  | November 9, 2010; 7:30 PM ET
Categories:  Local Climate  
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I live right behind National Harbor. About 4 weeks ago I trimmed all the flowers off of my produce plants to funnel all energy into ripening the fruits that were already on the plants. Some matured. Others have reached a point where they aren't going to mature but are large, edible fruit, like green tomatoes and green peppers. If we were to get 3 weeks of 70 degree sunny days with 12 hours of daylight, I bet I could produce a small crop of left-over ripe produce. I guess what I am trying to say is that even without a frost or freeze, the growing season is over, just like the NWS says. Bummer.

Posted by: pjdunn1 | November 9, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

The growing season is over but there is still lots of work to do in the garden. Will be digging the beginnings of a raspberry patch on Veteran's day. The plants won't go in until the spring but horrid clay soil needs a lot of prep beforehand.
Best year for basil & hot peppers ever.

Posted by: FIREDRAGON47 | November 9, 2010 8:46 PM | Report abuse

In my cold frames I can keep harvesting basically all Winter :-P

Unless, of course, we have a Winter like the one last year. Wow. Let's hope not!

Posted by: wrytous | November 10, 2010 9:26 AM | Report abuse

There are still a few crickets around...though it seems the cricket population this fall dropped to a large degree during the September dry spell.

Apparently crickets and other fall bugs get affected either by dry spells or excessively rainy weather...I've noted declines from both causes in years past with no really cold or subfreezing conditions reponsible for the population crashes. Wet weather apparently causes cricket deaths due to mold and bacterial disease.

Currently the population of Velarifictorus micado [Japanese burrowing cricket] seems to be done for the year despite no killing frost down here in Arlington. In years past I've found V. micado nymphs even after Halloween. Not this year...the dry weather last month possibly speeded maturation or facilitated egg laying in mature females. Currently there seem to be only occasional mature crickets of this species. I thought I heard one male chirping last night plus a few field crickets and a number of ground crickets.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | November 10, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

hi Bombo47jea - While I haven't heard any crickets downtown for some time, I will keep my ears open! If we get sunlight and warmth into the 60s late this week, they should "chirp" a little more?

Sounds like some of you already have planned the growing season's end. Anyone have a protected herb garden, for instance, good for winter harvesting?

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | November 10, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

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