Interesting weekend, no?  Frost driven nights and flurry filled mornings.  This is October, right?  Yes indeed.   It was a bit unseasonable, but no need to panic.  The unusual weather was no more foretelling of the winter ahead than the migratory patterns of the barn swallow.  Or is it?

Nature is a wise old gal, and often presents us with clues about impending weather, climate patterns, and a season’s overall tone.  Many swear by these signs and believe them to be valuable indicators.  Some you may know.  Some may sound outlandish, but none could be any more absurd than the 21st century weatherman’s, er, meteorologist’s forecasts.  Without further adieu, let’s delve into the world of weather proverbs, adages, and signs:

October Moon

  • Clear moon, frost soon.
  • Flowers blooming in late autumn are a sign of a bad winter.
  • When the clouds appear like rocks and towers, the earth will be washed by frequent showers.
  • When leaves fall early, autumn and winter will be mild; when leaves fall later, winter will be severe.
  • Rainbow at noon, more rain soon.
  • Evening red and morning gray are two sure signs of one fine day.
  • Hornets’ nests built in the top of trees indicate a mild winter is ahead; nests built close to the ground indicate that a harsh winter is coming.
  • If bees stay at home, rain will come soon.  If they fly away, fine will be the day.
  • When ants travel in a straight line, expect rain; when they are scattered, expect fair weather.
  • A warm November is the sign of a bad winter.
  • Rain before seven, sun by eleven.
  • A ring around the sun or moon means rain or snow is coming soon.
  • When leaves show their undersides, be very sure that rain betides.
  • When the forest murmurs, and the mountain roars, then close your windows, and shut your doors.
  • If the cat washes her face over her ear, the weather is sure to be fine and clear.
  • If the first snow falls on unfrozen ground, expect a mild winter.
  • If the squirrels’ tails are very bushy and can be seen collecting a huge amount of nuts, a long and bitter winter is about to begin.

Uh-oh.  That last one sent chills up my spine.  The squirrels in our yard have been particularly busy.

Got an adage or weather clue?  We’d love to hear from you, so post a comment and share your knowledge.

“Besides the Autumn poets sing

A few prosaic days

A little this side of the snow

And that side of the haze

Grant me, Oh Lord, a sunny mind

Thy windy will to bear.”

-Emily Dickinson

Best wishes,

Kim Sweeney