Probability of Ice freeze days (herbaceous crops) in dormant period (< -15°C), week 1

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The probability (likelihood) of ice freeze days for herbaceous crops during in a dormant period. The number of days in the forecast period with a minimum temperature below the frost temperature. It is -15°C for herbaceous crops over the dormant period.

This week 1 forecasted probability is available daily from November 1 to March 31.

Temperature is a key factor affecting the physiological development of field crops as well as crop yield and agricultural product quality achieved during the growing season. Crop responses to the temperature are characterized by three important cardinal temperature indices; the cardinal minimum temperature, maximum cardinal temperature, and optimum temperature for field crop production at which the plant growth and development can start, stop, and proceed at the maximum rate respectively.

Over-wintering crops are biennial and perennial field crops such as herbaceous plants (strawberry, alfalfa, timothy, and many other forage crops) and woody fruit trees (apple, pear, peach, cherry, plum, apricot, chestnut, pecan, grape, etc.). These crops normally grow and develop in the growing season and become dormant in the non-growing season. However, extreme weather and climate events such as cold waves in the growing season and ice freezing events during the winter are a major constraint for their success of production and survival in Canada. The winter survival of these plants depends largely on agrometeorological conditions from late autumn to early spring, especially ice-freezing damage during the winter season. The optimum temperature for such crops is 25°C.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) have together developed a suite of extreme agrometeorological indices based on four main categories of weather factors: temperature, precipitation, heat, and wind. The extreme weather indices are intended as short-term prediction tools and generated using ECCC’s medium range forecasts to create a weekly index product on a daily basis.

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