Snow delays spring corn planting, asparagus harvest

Capital News Service
LANSING — Farmers may be off to a late start this year after snowfall and low temperatures put them behind schedule. There is good news and bad news associated with the snow. The heavy snow insulated the ground, protecting micro-organisms that are good for corn. But the high water remaining in fields could strain the industry, said corn grower Scott Lonier, owner of Lonier Farms near Lansing. “We are at the mercy of Mother Nature right now,” he said.

Emergency officials brace for floods when snow and warmth converge

Capital News Service
LANSING — State and local officials in Michigan are bracing for spring floods after record-breaking snowfalls in some areas. “Normally there would be around a 20 percent chance of Michigan communities reaching flood level this time of year, but the chances this year are as high as 90 percent especially in southwest Michigan,” said Mark Sekelsky, meteorologist at the National Weather Service Grand Rapids office. The risks are high: A 50 percent to 90 percent chance of flooding in statewide this year, according to the National Weather Service. “There has been a large snowfall and a greater snowpack than usual further into the year so the risk of flood is greater,” said Ron Leix, public information officer for the Michigan State Police. There has been roughly 2 to 6 inches of water in snowpack, an amount that we might reach every 25 to 30 years, Sekelsky said.

Michigan campuses ranked for—what else?—snow

Capital News Service
LANSING — Two of the 10 snowiest college campuses in the nation are right here in Michigan, according to a list published by the AccuWeather forecasting service. Michigan Technological University in Houghton at the northernmost part of the Upper Peninsula ranked first with an average of nearly 200 inches of snowfall annually. And the eighth snowiest campus is Western Michigan University, the weather service says. On average, the Kalamazoo University receives 67 inches of snow each year. Placing No.

Volunteers keep tabs on rain, snow

Capital News Service
LANSING – It has a long name, but the Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network (CoCoRaHS) makes quick and easy work of measuring precipitation. Rainfall and snowfall have long been difficult to monitor. But that’s less of a problem now, thanks to a simple rain gauge and citizen participation, said Jeff Andresen, the state climatologist and coordinator of the Michigan chapter of the national group known as CoCoRaHS. Anyone can join. The only requirements are a rain gauge and an enthusiasm for the environment, said Andresen, who is also an associate professor of geography at Michigan State University.