More weather

With my favorite meteorologist commenting in the previous blog entry about the onset of the rainiest part of the wet season, I remembered something I'd read in the LA Times House and Garden section just the other day. Robert Smaus comments in his Dec 28th column, THE MONTHLY GARDENER, that, "January is historically a dry month in the garden, though some weather experts are forecasting that this winter's heaviest rains may get an early start....Don't wait too long to do garden jobs because February and March are usually our rainiest months, when soils will be too wet to dig in or walk on."

However, my digging around in the recent historical data (60 year graph below) suggests that January can be just as wet as February in Los Angeles, and that March is generally less wet than February. On the other hand, the two years for which I have more detailed information suggest that January can indeed be a dry month. Hmmm.... Re-examining the way I've presented the data in the previous blog, it leaves a lot be desired: The connect the dots graphing technique leads to the conclusion that rainfall increases linearly between two storms, when that's really not the case at all. A bar chart would be better. Another possibility is that I've mis-graphed the data below. I'll have to check that, as well as the apparently popular view that Feb and March are usually the wettest months.


  1. Check out the monthly mean rainfall table at http://www.met.utah.edu/jhorel/html/wx/climate/normrain.html.
    The Los Angeles AP probably means LAX rainfall statistics.

    Feb is the rainest month. I thought March was rainier than January, but was wrong. Feb, Jan and Mar are the rainiest months in that order.

  2. Thanks. It may well be that for gardeners Feb and March are the wettest months because the January rains soak into the dry ground and disappear rapidly, whereas the later rains do not.

    In terms of precipitation, it's good to know that Jan and Feb take first rank.