Old Wives Tales

Tabor, SD(Zone 4b)

I'm fascinated by old wives tales about the weather and try to write them down whenever I hear a new one. Things like:

If the first snow of the season melts, all the following snows will melt before it snows again.

Wind out of the south for three days means it will rain on the fourth.

When the first cicada of the summer sings, that means there will be a frost in 6 weeks.

Does anyone have any others??

L.A. (Canoga Park), CA(Zone 10a)

There is one that never, ever worked where I grew up - "Rain before seven, quit by eleven."

A had a roommate in college who said something like, "The number of fogs in August equals the number of snowfalls in December."

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

A couple from the locals around here: a ring around the moon means snow, and the number of stars in the ring say how many days until it snows (or maybe how many days it snows.... I'm unclear).

The number of shucks (layers) on the ears of corn say how bad the winter. They usually have 3-4; this year they have around 8 here.

Highest my friend's gramma has seen is 11 and it was not only a bad winter, they had an almost unheard-of tornado that cut as wide a swath of death and destruction as the midwest sees.

He agrees with the cicada tale but says first frost will be in 40 days. It;s been about 3 weeks since he heard the first chirps.

L.A. (Canoga Park), CA(Zone 10a)

My mom believes that the more black that is on a woolly bear caterpillar, the worse the winter will be.

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

Kelli, I've heard that one a lot. Even had a college professor friend who studied them. Has been mostly disproven.

Wish I knew about whether some of the others have been disproven!

L.A. (Canoga Park), CA(Zone 10a)

I never believed the woolly bear thing. Besides, out here in CA, all woolly bears are always all black. What is a bad winter in CA? The sun doesn't come out for half a day? LOL

Gordonville, TX(Zone 7b)

You're rubbing it in, Kelli! LOL

Melvindale, MI(Zone 5a)

Here is one my husband always swears by because he loves to fish. Red sky at night is a sailor's delight, red sky in the morning is a sailor's warning.

Cindy

Gordonville, TX(Zone 7b)

I remember that one from my childhood. Thanks!

Melvindale, MI(Zone 5a)

Your welcome. I just happened to remember one from my childhood. My mother always told me to never kill a spider, because if I did, it would rain.

Gordonville, TX(Zone 7b)

Well, I don't know about the rain thang but, I'm glad cuz I like spiders!

Frederick, MD(Zone 7a)

If it is raining outside and the sun is shining--stick a needle into the ground, put your ear over it and
you can hear the devil beating his wife.

Okay, my grandmother would tell us kids that one and yes...I tried it when I was little--and Yes, I've said it to my kids.

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

LOL

Panhandle, FL(Zone 8a)

When my granmother killed a snake (there are quite a few in Alabama) she would hang it on the clothes line to make it rain. I was so grossed out by the snake hanging there I have no idea it it ever rained.

Panhandle, FL(Zone 8a)

hemlady, we have the same results with a different saying...Evening red, morning gray, sends the traveler on his way. Evening gray, morning red, brings down rain on his head.

Belfield, ND(Zone 4a)

My Grandma always said that you could judge the upcoming winter by the amoung of food Mother Nature provides for her critters. If there was a lot of berries and such, it would be a hard winter.

Don't know if this is true or not, but this year we have absolutely no wildlife food. (Anybody know of a good online place to buy cheap thistle seed? I'm going through tons already and it's not even winter.) Berry blossoms all froze, and the drought took what was left over. We'll see though, as I'll be watching, and if this is true, we should have a mild winter.

If I had a choice though, I think I'd like to see a winter with lots of snow. From what I can remember, a hard winter brings on a decent summer with rainfall.

Long Beach, CA(Zone 10b)

Wow, weeds! What a picture I have of that snake!

My father always said that if we could not see Sierra Blanca (now is called Ski Apache!) which was acroos the New Mexico desert from my hometown of Roswell, that is would rain.

He was right.

Panhandle, FL(Zone 8a)

Roswell? oh my gosh, have you seen any ufo's?

Belfield, ND(Zone 4a)

When a heavy fog sets in, you can expect moisture 90 days from then, unless there is moisture within 3 days of the fog.

I have a goofy friend that puts 12 onion pieces, (so they are cupped), on her window sill on New Years Eve. One for each month of the upcoming year. The ones that have moisture in them the next morning are the months we should have moisture. I've never figured that one out.

Long Beach, CA(Zone 10b)

Yep- all of the time we saw UFOs. Everyday, in fact. And it is really good for business.

LOL

Panhandle, FL(Zone 8a)

Haha.....always intrigues me and i love to support the locals.

Long Beach, CA(Zone 10b)

Love them aliens!!

Panhandle, FL(Zone 8a)

When my grans would see something or somebody they really like they would say: my, your a sight for sore eyes!

Bay City, MI(Zone 6a)

Bubbles on the puddles gonna' rain for 3 days. I heard this all the time growing up and you still catch me outside when it is raining checking those puddles.

San Diego, CA(Zone 10a)

If a snake will do it, I am hanging one on my closeline shortly. lol. I love all of the rain predictions. funny, I never heard any of them in southern California. Winter prediction here is:

Partly sunny (never partly cloudy, folks) and 70 degrees.

Gordonville, TX(Zone 7b)

Yeah-yeah, we know.

Santa Fe, TX(Zone 9b)

I was there at Christmas and it was cold. Beautiful, but cold.

L.A. (Canoga Park), CA(Zone 10a)

Here's a southern CA rain prediction that this old wife made up. It is nearly infallable for our neighborhood. Here goes, "If you hear the train, it isn't going to rain." It works and it rhymes. It that brilliant, or what? ;-) This works because the train tracks are a couple miles to the northeast of me. Rainy weather never comes from the northeast here,so when the wind comes from that direction, it isn't going to rain. By the way, the train was whistling away this morning.

Another So. CA observation of mine is that if it smells like it is going to snow, then it is very likely that it is going to rain. Of course, if you never lived in a place where it snows, that wouldn't do you much good.

I'll bet the Indians of So. CA had weather sayings, but that information has probably all been lost.

"Red in the morning" doesn't work here as a sign for bad weather, so we made up, "Red in the morning, (our workplace) is boring." Goofy, but true. Of course, any other color in the morning, our workplace still is boring. :-/

Gordonville, TX(Zone 7b)

Well, you have the rest of today, all day sunday & monday before you have to go back. Work is boring! I have never been bored since retiring. Never! :-)

Spokane Valley, WA(Zone 5b)

How about young wives tales?

She: Have you checked the Weather Channel yet to see if it's going to rain today?
He: Honey, look outside the window.

*giggle*

We now return to our regularly scheduled topic. :)

Darius, I remember that 'ring around the moon' denoting rain instead of snow, and it was 'days until'. Seems like it was from the Farmer's Almanac that could always be found in Oma and Opa's 'reading room' (the lil bathroom off the laundry room, not the main one). ;)

Kelli, I understand that neighborhood prediction of hearing the train! Our winds prevail from the southwest, in the direction of the freeway (we're in town). When it comes from the north, we hear the train whistles along with events at the ballpark and the fairgrounds... and know it's gonna get chilly soon.

ROFL now at your comment about smelling snow -- it's so true! I did that in Phoenix, Arizona after having grown up in the Midwest. And the first duststorm I ever experienced there had me turning on radios and the television to catch the tornado watches/warnings. I feared that noone besides me knew what was brewing in those clouds!

Isn't life in different locales fun? :)
Donna

Bay City, MI(Zone 6a)

when the swallows sit on the telephone lines-rain is coming

Gordonville, TX(Zone 7b)

Hello, Donna.

When I lived in California they would say that a warm day with a high, thin overcast was earthquake weather!

Spokane Valley, WA(Zone 5b)

Sure hope we don't get any earthquakes up here anytime soon, imway2dumb! LOL

L.A. (Canoga Park), CA(Zone 10a)

To me, that high, thin overcast just means that it is not going to rain in the near future. I call it "milky sky". I notice it mostly in October and November.

My dad said that my grandma (in PA) also had a weather saying about hearing the train, but he couldn't remember what it signified.

Gordonville, TX(Zone 7b)

The reasoning behind the train one makes sense. Winds and all that. :-)

Mount Prospect, IL(Zone 5a)

When the leaves show their backs, rain within 24 hours. Also if the grass in the morning is dry, means rain in the next 48hrs. (grass is usually wet in the mornings from the dew). Then too, when you see clouds that look like a herd of sheep, rain coming in 48 hours.

Morristown, NJ(Zone 6a)

When goldenrod blooms the first frost will be in a month

Gulfport, MS(Zone 8a)

My Granny used to say that when ants built their beds way up the side of a tree that there would be a cold winter.

Panhandle, FL(Zone 8a)

oh Roz, I never heard that one!

Gordonville, TX(Zone 7b)

Moda127, has the goldenrod bloomed in your area yet? LOL

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