Now into May – looks like no serious Loire frosts this year

Frost damage in April 2016

 

Although with fingers still crossed, it looks like there should be no serious frost damage this year, so no sad scenes as above of the damage inflicted in 2016. We are now into May and although we are not yet through the Saints de Glace (11th-13th May) the long range BBC forecast for Chenonceaux to Sunday 17th May indicates no frost with temperatures not dropping below 7˚C on 6th, 4˚C on 11th and 5˚C on 12th. Clearly a couple of cool nights are forecast during the Saints de Glace if you follow the BBC version.

 

However, Méteo France is more reassuring:

ChenonceauxNo minimum temperature below 8˚C 

 

SancerreSancerre: Down to 5˚C this Thursday but still well above freezing

West of Tours the night time temperatures are all comfortably above freezing – eg Saumur:

Saumur

It could have been considerably different as bud break was early – well before the end of March. On 26th and on several nights at the end of march and early April temperatures fell well below freezing but fortunately the ground was very dry and humidity low so damage was avoided obviously assisted by the anti-frost measures many producers have taken individually and collectively especially since the severe frosts of 2016.

With coronavirus knocking wine sales both in France and on export markets a bad frost in 2020 would have been devastating. It would have meant that the Loire had been badly hit by frost in four – 2016, 2017, 2019 and 2020 – out of the last five years…… Thankfully we appear to have escaped this year!!    

Now with the current bout of wettish weather there is the threat of mildew. Better keep those fingers crossed!!

•••

A start to the end of lock down…..

If all goes well this will be my last post before the confinement in France starts to be lifted, This assumes that the number of infections and deaths continue to decline. Hopefully Indre-et-Loire will be classified as a département vert – currently it is orange. This is an intermediate category between green départements and red ones, where with the greater risk of infections the rules will be more strict. The orange category will disappear on 7th May with départements either classed red or green.

From Monday 11th May we will not be having to fill out an attestation every time we go out. More shops will open but not bars, cafés and restaurants. Instead of being limited to exercising for a bare hour within one kilometre of where you live you will be able to go up to 100 kilometres away. Whether this is a 100 km as the crow flies or 100 km on a road doesn’t appear to have been defined yet. This will certainly make bike rides more interesting again. However, I cannot complain confinement in a small commune in Touraine bears no comparison with living on the edge in an overcrowded flat in Saint-Denis, the poorest suburb of Paris!

How long it will take to return to some sort of normalcy remains to be seen as does what elements of what we previously considered to be normal will disappear possibly for good.

Santé à tous.

 

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