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Hot afternoon, severe storm watch up

Posted by David Epstein  June 22, 2012 01:53 PM

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Our first official heat wave of the year will come to an end after today. Heat waves often end with a bang and this one is no exception. A severe thunderstorm watch is now in effect until 9PM for parts of the area. Hot temperatures, now in the mid-90s, , will fuel storms late this afternoon and overnight. Our record of 97F in Boston will be challenged, but not broken in the next few hours. The temperature yesterday hit a record high of 96F at Logan Airport. That broke the old record set back in 1949 of 95F. Even Nantucket got in on the action with a 92F high temperature. That was the warmest June temperature ever recorded, on the Island, and the 4th highest ever!
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Today and Saturday
Today is another hot and humid day with temperatures well into the 90s this afternoon. Overnight is going to be another warm and muggy night with temperatures not getting much below 70F all night. By the time we get to Sunday the air will drier and cooler. However, getting there will not be quick. The problem is that the front, which will eventually push all the heat and humidity out to sea, is moving fairly slowly. This means that the clearing, after the front passes, will take about 12 to 18 hours to move through. In other words, the front goes by overnight, but is still close enough tomorrow morning to leave us with clouds and a few showers. As the day goes along, I expect the clearing line to move southeastward. Folks across Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont will have a better day Saturday as they will be further into the dry air. This means more in way of sunshine, and less of a chance of showers. Temperatures will be in the 70s in northern New England to the lower 80s across southern New England. Humidity will still be quite high all day Saturday. During the overnight Saturday, while you are sleeping, the air will be becoming drier.
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Sunday
Right now Sunday should be the best day of the weekend. I am forecasting sunshine mixed with clouds, lower humidity and warm temperatures in the upper 70s and lower 80s. Try to get outside Sunday because the weather goes downhill Monday. I like to interact with folks via Twitter so, remember, please follow me on Twitter at @growingwisdom

Next week
All the details on next weeks weather won't be nailed down until we get closer to Monday. However, I am confident it is going to be quite cool with at least two periods of showers. One of these, Monday, could bring some heavier downpours. The week overall will not be a washout, but it is going to be incredibly different than the past few days. Temperatures will be in the lower 70s during the day and 50s at night during the upcoming week.

Sunset and sunrise
We are losing daylight by a few seconds each day now. By the end of the month we lose about 4 minutes. Because of the way the earth revolves around the sun and the shape of the earth we are losing all of that daylight, for now, in the morning. The sunsets are actually getting a few seconds later still, but the sunrises are getting later as well. The net difference is a slight loss in daylight. After about July 1st, we lose daylight at both ends. Sunset until then remains at 8:25 in Boston, slightly later the further west you go.

Jet Stream
The reason for the major heat and upcoming changes in our weather is of course due to the positioning of the jet stream. The first image, (below) shows the jet stream today. Notice the yellow line, the main flow, is way up in Canada. This has allowed the heat and humidity to move north, far into New England. By next week, the jet stream moves further south and allows cooler and perhaps some unsettled air into our area. Temperatures much of next week will be below what you might expect for late June.
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Gardening this week

If your perennials seem out of control and rather large already you can do some pruning to help manage their size. Many perennials will stay tighter and neater from some quick pruning. Check out this video and see how you can try this in your own yard.

Remember, please follow me on Twitter at @growingwisdom and check out my latest videos at GrowingWisdom.com

This blog is not written or edited by Boston.com or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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About the author

David Epstein has been a professional meteorologist and horticulturalist for three decades. David spent 16 years at WCVB in Boston and currently freelances for WGME in Portland, ME. In 2006, More »
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