July

Peter M. Dziuk/Minnesota Wildflowers

Much cooler weather seemed strange and remarkable this past week, but Larry Weber says, that's because temperatures dropped down to "normal" from nasty hot.

Tricia Galvin/Unsplash

As of yesterday, we've gotten twice the normal amount of rainfall we usually get in July.

That 2.83" is almost the same amount of rain as we got in April, May and June.

As our 90° temps cool into the low 80s, it's the perfect time to celebrate the 84th anniversary of 1936's "heat week;" the coolest temperature recorded that week (these were recorded by the lake, by the way) was 95° and the 106° on July 13 is the hottest temperature ever recorded in Duluth.

Sankax/Flickr

Vernal ponds are drying up.

June will go down as one of the top five driest Junes in 150 years.

And now ... big spiders.*

Perhaps this quote from Dorothy Molter, the "Root Beer Lady" sums up these days best:

  "When it gets to be July, I look forward to the long cold nights of November."

*A note about this photograph

55Laney69/Flickr

So far, August is shaping up to be July ... at 50% intensity, or something.

It's been warmer than normal (but not as much as last month) and drier than normal (but not as much as last month).

"Awesome August," as Larry calls it, does have it's own unique charms, too: like it's own wildflowers, the earlier wildflowers going to seed, and an abundance of animals, birds and insects on the move.

Orthonit/Flickr

Larry Weber is enjoying all the ingredients of a Perfect Mosquito Morning plus he's got all our stats for July and a look forward into August.

Larry also reports a young barred owl at his place, calling for its parents.  You can listen to the barred owl's call here.

©Lisa Johnson

Larry Weber's not on social media, but its tentacles reached out to him anyway so he could answer the trending question: are there more white pelicans around here than usual for this time of year?

And here's some Phenology phenology: what we were talking about last year at this time:

Alison Leigh Lilly/Flickr

Forget May; July is bustin' out all over!

From summer frogs and turtles to flies (dragon-, butter-, and deer-) to berries and wildflowers, July is just begging for you to get out into the middle of it.

And here's some phenology phenology (phenology about phenology?): what we were talking about last year at this time.

©Lisa Johnson

Some things that fly are starting to think about migration (bird, monarchs), some are thinking about starting families (goldfinches), some things with leaves (sumac, Virginia creeper) are thinking about fall color and some things that like walks (Larry Weber) are starting to think about spiders, shorter days and berries.

©Bryan French. Used with permission.

Larry Weber's already looking forward to what he calls "Awesome August," but he's not done enjoying the cricket-sized little spring peepers, wood frogs and American toads yet, either.

And milkweed and fireweed, he says, "own July."