Israel: Spring wildflowers late due to unusual cold in early 2022
The average temperatures for January through March combined were the coldest since 1993
Israel's wildflower bloom was delayed this year due to unusual cold and rain during the first two and a half months of 2022, according to a botanical expert.
Emeritus Prof. Avi Shmida, an evolutionary ecologist from Hebrew University in Jerusalem, told The Times of Israel that cold snaps in January lasting through mid-March delayed flowering by at least three weeks.
The germination of seeds was also slightly late due to the fact that heavy rains started only in mid-December.
March of 2022 was the coldest in Israel since 1953, according to Dr. Amos Porat, director of Climate Services at the Israel Meteorological Service via ToI.
Additionally, the average temperatures for January through March combined were the coldest since 1993.
The turban buttercup was three weeks late, and the Persian cyclamen was two weeks late and still blooming on Mount Meron in Israel's north.
Cold in the areas that usually see a Mediterranean climate led to an unusual intensity of flowering in trees, including the Syrian pear and several species of shrubs.
The spiny broom saw three times the usual number of flowers, Shmida said, according to ToI.
This winter also saw more rain, 107 percent of the average recorded from October 25. Tel Aviv saw 2.5 inches of rain this winter compared with its average of 1.7 inches.