Cooling…German Springs Arriving 20 Days Later Than 28 Years Ago!

Spring in Germany arriving later and later every year. Also forsythia blossoms in Hamburg arriving later and later

By Josef Kowatsch und Stefan Kämpfe
[Translated/edited by P Gosselin]

This is an addendum to our earlier article on delayed spring blossoms here (and here at NTZ).

In our previous article linked above we showed that mean temperatures for the months of January, February and March have been cooling for almost the past three decades, this according to the German DWD National Weather Service. And this is the result without applying any urban heat island adjustments to the measured temperatures.

As a result we are seeing increasingly delayed spring starts – especially spring blossoms in open areas where the cooling is even more pronounced. We confirmed this with our own vegetation observations in the article, e.g. the blossoming of winter aconites out in the open.

Crocuses and winter aconites; Photo by J.Kowatsch/Stefan Kämpfe

Some readers from the over 100 comments left cast doubt on our observations, and pointed out that the official authorities such as the State Office for Environmental Protection in Karlsruhe or the DWD claimed the opposite was in fact occurring, i.e. spring was arriving earlier and earlier. However these readers failed to provide any measured data from these officials.

We took the time to look more deeply into the matter and found something astonishing. The State Environment Office in Karlsruhe itself does not even keep any such long-term observations. Instead it gets the results from the DWD. And the DWD appears to have the habit of regularly citing forsythia blossoms in the City of Hamburg as an example of spring arriving earlier. The blossoms are earlier and earlier, the DWD claims, at least those that the DWD always likes to invoke. This claimed early blossoming indeed must be evidence of climate warming, a few of the readers believed.

Well, a former DWD employee recently provided us with the following diagram of the forsythia blossoming data for the Hamburg Lombard Bridge from the DWD itself. The surprise is great:

Fig. 1 The left side vertical axis depicts the number of days after the start of the year. The higher the number, the later the start of forsythia blossoms. The chart shows they are arriving almost 20 days later than 25 years earlier.

Although the observation series were recorded right in the middle of heat island Hamburg, and thus did not even fulfill the conditions for an objective observation, the start of blossoms turns out to be precisely as those in the completely open exposed areas that we looked at in our previous article: Since 1988 spring has been arriving later and later. The start of springtime forsythia blossoms is also arriving later and later in the large urban heat island of Hamburg.

Result: Also the data on the City of Hamburg show that forsythia blossom have been arriving considerably later and later since 1988, indicating a increasingly delayed start of spring.

The constant claims that forsythia blossoms are coming earlier and earlier are false.

Another phenologist located in Seesen also sent us his observation data of forsythia blossoms, and these are shown in the following chart:

Fig. 2. Forsythia blossoms have been arriving later and later also in Seesen for the past 28 years. The observations are consistent with the data from the DWD in Hamburg.” Data source: Phenologist Georg v. Petersdorff-Campen

Result: Spring in Germany is beginning later and later. All March blossoms are delayed. We trace this back to the months of January, February and March becoming colder and colder over the past 28 years.

26 responses to “Cooling…German Springs Arriving 20 Days Later Than 28 Years Ago!”

  1. Boyfromtottenham

    So who is going to hold the DWD to account for misleading the German people in this way?

    1. DirkH

      It counts as very impolite in Germany to hold any official accountable for anything.

  2. CraigM350

    Throughout the 80’s-00’s Forsythia did seem to be getting earlier and I recall one year it started in Feb. This was in London and UHI was an obvious effect. I have noted it arriving later again over the past few years bar the blip of 2013/14. This year it was the last days of March which was a surprise as the weather had been relatively fine beforehand. The same with many tree blossoms.

  3. JJM Gommers

    The large swings are contributed to weather, the trend points in the direction of slight cooling. The coming years will become decisive, the forecast based on the solar downturn is more cooling. When this will turn out the whole discussion about CO2 will be over.

  4. DirkH

    You gotta give James Hansen cudos for timing, with his Global Warming alarm in 1988.

    1. AndyG55

      That is why the must, must, must get something in place towards their bureaucratic totalitarian agenda at the Paris soiree .

      They know that people are waking up to the con/scam of AGW/Climate Change.

      1. Stephen Richards

        Les journées à Paris. Soirée is evenings only. I’m confident they will be pretending to work into he evening to get a worthy result and to make it look essentially dangerous that they have achieved the required agreement.

    2. TimoH

      Hansens timing was not accident, even AMO oscillation was already known phenomenom, but IPCCs hockeysitck climate “science” has been systematicly denying it for 30 years now on.

  5. Mindert Eiting

    It is possible that your data will be used by the German delegates in Paris, showing that their heroic energy program really works.

  6. Lasse

    It is weather related-as the melting of inland ice in Greenland. Now a month late:

  7. sod

    Those who can read German should look at the comments.

    The result is the cause of a cherry pick in starting year.

    The long term trend is as it is supposed to be: earlier spring and earlier flowers.

    1. Mindert Eiting

      You are right. The Germans have now an earlier spring than 12.000 years ago. The only way of not cherry picking a starting year is to take the year minus 4.5 billion. Do you have a better idea?

      1. sod

        ” The only way of not cherry picking a starting year is to take the year minus 4.5 billion.”

        That is wrong. Just do not pick a all time low period as your starting point and do not pick a period that will give a completely different result, when you move the start year by 2 years forward.

        I would name such a period pick to be a “trick”.

    2. AndyG55

      They are not cherries, they are Forsythia.

      At least stay on topic for once, sob. !

  8. Stew Green

    Pierre can we get an update on the Magic solar plane.
    How many times has it been around the world now ? (with it’s claim 25 day flight time)

    1. Ulrich Elkmann


      Cue nasty chuckling…

      1. DirkH

        That is cherry picking, only one region, also, Global Warming makes some places colder.

        I’m in Mannheim and it’s raining.

        1. Jeff

          Yep, kinda cold here in the “Wilde Süden” too. I see you’re not too far from the Odenwald – the real one. The fake one, working for (out of) Focus has some new fairy tales:

          1. DirkH

            Fantastic! Works best in deserts! And, you need WATER to extract the CO2 from the catchers! That should be no problem whatsoever!

          2. Jeff

            @DirkH – kind of reminds me of “roblock” (Asimov?) where a robot would get stuck and couldn’t act due to conflicting directives… I would love to see, erm, Moonbeam Brown in
            California try to implement this with their current water
            “shortage” (** cough ** mismangement ** cough”).

            Those poor non-native snail darters sure seem to have a lot of influence (effluence?)…

            Gosh, between the banks and their punitive negative interest, Greece and its unlimited thirst for (mostly German taxpayers’) funds, the EU and its unlimited thirst for (mostly German taxpayers’) funds, and these pie-in-the-sky-oh-me-oh-my idiotic schemes by scientists who should know better,
            we poor proles have nothing left to do except to become poorer…

  9. Green Sand

    Same in Scotland:-

    “……the current trend (2014) has a slight positive value (i.e. spring happening later)……”

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