AWIS Weather Forecast: Widespread Freeze

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AWIS Weather Forecast: Widespread Freeze

A widespread freeze is expected on the weekend, with several pockets of frost, starting Thursday (April 1) to Friday (April 2) night. Please download this document to learn about cold injury mitigation.

In areas with higher windspeeds (5mph or higher), typical frost mitigation systems (wind machines, sprinkler systems, etc.) won’t be very effective. We also anticipate frost in pockets with lower windspeeds, especially Friday (April 2) to Saturday (April 3) night.

The freeze can potentially lead to damages to trunk and cordon structure in addition to bud damage.  Those conditions are predicted to last 2-3 days. After the freezing conditions are over (next week), we highly advise to inspect cordon and trunk structure of vines as well as assessing bud fruitfulness! (See this publication)

We will keep you updated as the situation develops.

Regional Weather Discussion

A stronger cold front pushes through mid week (Wednesday/Thursday), with some rain and scattered storms. Rain totals mostly 1/2 inch to locally more than one inch. The air mass behind this cold front originates from Northern Canada, with surface high pressure moving Southeastward through the Northern Plains and Southern Ohio Valley Thursday and Friday and settling over the Carolina’s by early Saturday morning.

Thursday Night / Friday Morning

An advective type freeze event (with some wind) is setting up for many areas later Thursday (April 1) night through Friday (April 2) morning. Dew point temperatures likely to fall into the 20s many areas perhaps even teens in a few locations, particularly in the Piedmont areas just East and Southeast of the Appalachian chain given the anticipated “drying out” impacts from a N/NW wind. However, other areas will likely see temperatures a couple degrees colder and winds dropping close to 5mph ranges would cause air temperatures to fall a couple more degrees than forecast.

Friday Night / Saturday Morning

This likely will be the morning of highest concern for most areas. As high pressure at the surface moves over the Carolina’s by sunrise Saturday morning. This will allow winds to decrease, and ground temperatures to cool more than those at the official 5 foot level, perhaps as much as 4-7 degrees colder pockets. While dew point temperatures may rise some during the night, as winds subside and wet grounds influence the air right above it, they still likely will be several degrees below freezing many areas. This sets the stage for a widespread freeze with locally heavy ground frost possible. This frost and possible ground freeze will extend into Southern growing areas of Georgia as well. Not as cold Easter Sunday morning, but still frost risks. Frost and freeze risk is minimal for several days after this weekend.


If you are in an area that is not affected by higher wind speeds, think about frost mitigation strategies (heaters, wind machines, sprinkler systems). Post-pone any final prune on delayed pruned vines until after the freeze! Unfortunately a vineyard is almost defenseless to freeze events with higher windspeeds. In such events, please do not use vineyard fires, they can cause severe damage. In areas in which temperatures are predicted to be in their teens, it is very likely to see some cold injury on trunk structures on the less hardy cultivars. The freezing temperatures will move into our area on Thursday (April 1) and will last until Sunday (April 3). We will keep you updated as the situation develops.

Thursday Temperature chart Friday Temperature chart Saturday Temperature chart Sunday Temperature chart

Figure 1: AWIS Weather Service: Minimum Temperatures for the region from April 1-April 4. Low temperatures are expected especially from Thursday (April 1) to Saturday (April 3).

Hourly Forecasts

(provided by  AWIS Weather Services.)

North Carolina:

Ahoskie-Tri-Cou Albemarle_AP Andrews Asheboro
Asheville_Munic Beaufort-Michae Boone_NC Burlington-Burl
Cape_Hatteras_AG Chapel_Hill-Hor Charlotte Cherry_Point
Clinton_NC Concord_NC Currituck_NC Edenton-Northea
Elizabeth_City Elizabethtown_NC Erwin-Harnett_C Fayetteville_AP
Fort_Bragg/Simm Franklin/Macon_C Gastonia-Gaston Goldsboro_AFB
Goldsboro_NC Greensboro Greenville_AP_NC Hickory
Jacksonville Jacksonville_(A Jefferson_AP_NC Kenansville-Dup
Kill_Devil_Hills Kinston_AP Lexington-David Lincolnton_AP
Louisburg_NC Lumberton_AP_NC Mackall_AAF Manteo/Dare_Co
Maxton Mcalf_Bogue_Fiel Monroe_AP_NC Morganton-Morga
Mount_Airy-Moun New_Bern North_Wilkesbor Oxford_NC
Piney_Island_Bom Pope_AFB Raleigh-Durham Reidsville_AP
Roanoke_Rap_AP Roanoke_Rapids_R Rockingham_NC Rocky_Mount-Wils
Roxboro_AP Rutherfordton Salisbury-Rowan Sanford_NC
Shelby_AP_NC Smithfield_AP Southern_Pines Southport_NC
Statesville-Sta Tarboro_AP Wadesboro_AP Washington-Warr
Whiteville_NC Wilmington_AP_NC Winston-Salem

South Carolina:

Aiken_AP Anderson_Co_Air Barnwell_AP Beaufort_Cnty_AP
Beaufort_SC Bennettsville_Je Camden_AP Charleston_Exec_
Charleston_Muni Cheraw_AP Chester_AP Clemson-Clemson
Columbia-Columb Columbia/McEnti Columbia_Metro Conway_AP
Darlington Florence_SC Georgetown_AP_SC Greenville_Donal
Greenville_Down Greenville-Spart Greenwood-Green Hartsville_AP
Hilton_Head_AP Kingstree_AP Lancaster-McWhir Laurens_AP
Manning_AP Marion_AP_SC Moncks_Corner_AP Mount_Pleasant_A
Myrtle_Beach Newberry_AP North_Myrtle_Be Orangeburg-Oran
Pickens_AP Rock_Hill Spartanburg_Down Summerville_AP
Sumter_AP Sumter_SC Walterboro_AP Winnsboro_AP


Albany_Municipa Alma/Bacon_Co Americus_AP Athens_Municipa
Atlanta/DeKalb Atlanta/Fulton Atlanta_Intl_Ar Atlanta_Paulding
Augusta/Bush_Fi Augusta_Daniel_F Bainbridge_GA Blakely_AP
Brunswick_GA Brunswick/Glync Canton_GA Carrollton_AP
Cartersville_AP Claxton_AP Columbus_GA Covington_GA_AP
Dalton-Dalton_M Douglas_Muni Dublin/WHBarron Fitzgerald_AP
Fort_Benning Ft_Stewart/Wrig Gainesville_AP_G Greensboro_GA
Homerville_AP Hunter_(AAF) Jesup_AP La_Grange
Lakeland Lawrenceville_AP Macon_AP Marietta
Marietta/Cobb Milledgeville_AP Moultrie_Muni_AP Newnan-Newnan_C
Peachtree_City Rome_GA Savannah Statesboro_GA
Swainsboro_AP Sylvania_AP_GA Thomaston_AP Thomasville_AP
Thomson_GA Tifton_AP Valdosta Valdosta/Moody
Vidalia Warner_Robins_A Washington_GA Waycross_AP


Abingdon Ashland_VA Charlottesville Chesapeake-Ches
Culpeper Danville Dublin/New_Riv Emporia_VA
Farmville Fentress_Naval_A Fort_Belvoir/Da Fort_Eustis/Fel
Franklin/J_B_Ro Hillsville Hot_Springs/Ing Jonesville_AP
Langley_AFB Leesburg/Godfre Louisa-Louisa_C Lynchburg
Manassas_Muni(A Marion/Wythev Martinsville Mecklenburg/Bru
Melfa/Accomack Newport_News Norfolk_Hampton_ Norfolk_NAS
Norfolk_VA Oceana Orange_VA Petersburg_(AWO
Quantico Richlands_AP Richlands_VA Richmond
Richmond_Chester Roanoke Shannon_Arpt Stafford_AP_VA
Staunton-Shenan Suffolk-Suffolk Tappahannock_AP Virginia_Tech_A
Wakefield_AP Wallops_Island Warrenton_Fauqui Washington_Dulle
West_Point_VA Williamsburg_VA Winchester_Rgnl Wise/Lonesome_P


Aberdeen Andrews_AFB Annapolis_Naval Baltimore_Sci_Ce
Baltimore/Wash Cambridge/Dorche College_Park_AP Cumberland_AP
Easton_MD Fort_Meade Frederick_MD Gaithersburg_AP
Hagerstown_AP Leonardtown Middle_River Oakland_MD_AP
Ocean_City_AP Patuxent_River Salisbury Stevensville_AP
St_Inigoes/Webst Washington_DC_AP Westminster_AP

This post was created under the consultation and with permission of AWIS Weather Services