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March 2012

Spring maps & polar bears

Posted by Danielle Cowell on 22 March 2012

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Polar Bears -see the sun for the first time in six months.

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Crocuses at Fulwood and Cadley School.

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Average crocus records sent in from schools so far.

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Crocuses at Brynhyfryd Junior School

» View full post to see all images

This is the first official week of spring. It's called spring equinox, which means that the day and night are almost the same length.

At the North Pole, the polar bears are celebrating the first appearance of the sun in six months but at the South Pole the penguins are preparing for six months of darkness. I picked this up on Derek the Weatherman's blog - what a fascinating thought.

In the UK, school scientists are mapping spring by posting results to show when there spring flowers open - as part of a long term study into climate change. Despite the initial early start to the spring I think our results will show that our flowers have come late this year, because of the late frost. The results are flying in this week - 203 sent in so far! Many schools are still waiting for their flowers - hopefully they will come soon.

Please take a look at the beautiful pictures sent in by Fulwood & Cadley School and Brynhyfryd Junior.

What is the mystery bulb?

Ysgol Porth Y Felin: On Monday it was very rainy and we think the mystery bulb is
a tulip. Glyncollen Primary School: We found out that one of our mystery bulbs is a tulip. Our daffodils and crocus look lovely in the Spring sunshine. Ans: Both schools are correct - Welldone!

Your comments:

Fulwod and Cadley reported: All our crocuses have flowered now but 15 of our daffodil plants have no buds at all. We think, that they are unlikely to produce any buds now, we would be grateful if you would let us know what you think?

Ans: I agree, if there are no buds by now, sadly it is unlikey that they will flower. This has happenend to a few of mine too. The reason this has happened is unclear. When a daffodil doesn't make a flower gardeners say that the plant has gone 'blind' - as it has no flower head. This normally happens if the bulb has been flowering for a few years or if there is too much nitrogen in the soil - but this doesn't normally happen with a new bulb. This seems to have happened to my bulbs that started to grow really early - end of Decemeber early Jan. They grew tall then we had the frost and they seemed to stop growing taller - until much later. The hours of sunshine is a big factor with dafs - so we will have to look at all the records to see if there are any trends before we can make any conclusions.

Channelkirk Primary School asked: We measured the height of our plants in cm, but the site has it as mm. Should we measure the flower only? Ans: No, please measure the height in mm if possible or simply convert to mm. Thanks Prof.P

Ysgol Bro Cinmeirch: Tyfodd ccenin pedr mae o yn 215mm a dyfodd y grocws 35mm. Tyfodd cenin pedr arall 85mm a tyfodd y crocws 120 mm. Ateb: Sylwadau gwych!

Ysgol Nant Y Coed: I think that it's great to learn about rainfall and how it works their magic with flowers It's fun experementing on this and it's a experience for children to learn to measure. Ans: Glad you enjoyed - thanks for helping me. Prof. P

Ysgol Nant Y Coed: It was a very good experiment! Ysgol Nant Y Coed. I like the experiment!!!!!!!!!!! Ans: Glad you enjoyed the experiment! Thanks so much for helping me with this. Prof. P


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