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Cold Southeast Not Seeing a Happy First Day of Spring While Iceland Grapples With Volcanic Eruption

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From the coldest weather of the year since January in the Southeast to a volcanic eruption in Iceland to a record early peak bloom of the Washington, D.C. cherry blossoms, here is a look at the top weather headlines early this week.

While it may be a happy first day of spring for some, others are under frost warnings.

Portions of Southeast Under Freeze Warning

Despite Tuesday being the first day of the astronomical spring, it will feel like the dead of winter for the Southeast and into Florida. The coldest weather since January has set in over the region, putting some areas under freeze and frost warnings.

Residents woke up to unseasonably cold temperatures during the Tuesday morning weather after a bitterly cold Monday night.

In addition to being uncomfortable for people wanting spring to arrive, the cold temperatures will also threaten young leaves and blossoms just starting to bud. The risk of damage to vegetation and plants will stretch as far south as Interstate 20.

Although it is not out of the ordinary for this part of the country to experience a hard freeze during the middle of March, the warmer than usual winter sent many plants and trees blooming well ahead of the normal schedule.

This means that some blooms will be more susceptible to damage since they are further along in the growing process.

Looking at some individual city forecasts, Jacksonville, Florida is forecast to see a high of 67 degrees on Tuesday, a level more typical of the middle of February. Overnight lows will land at about 43 degrees, coming in at the lowest measurements since January.

It will be chillier to the north in Atlanta. The Peach City will struggle to climb out of the upper 50s on Tuesday. Overnight readings will bottom out just below the freezing mark. Conditions will be dry in Atlanta until Friday when the next shot of moisture moves into northern Georgia.

While the temperatures will slowly creep back up in the days ahead, it is still prudent to take steps to cover vulnerable plants. Fruit blooms are particularly susceptible to the frost and freeze conditions.

This is also a good time to protect pipes that run above the ground and drain in-ground sprinkler systems.


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