October warmth

I have records at my present garden weather station in Surrey from 1979. The warmest October is 2001 equal with 2005 with a mean of 13.5C. The next highest is 2006 at 13.4C and then 1995 followed by 2013 at 12.9C ( to the 23rd) and then 2011. Thus in 34 years of records 5 of the top six have occurred since 2000.  

Across England and Wales going back over 350 years 2001 was the warmest October, 2005 second warmest and 2006 third placed. With a week to go could this year be among the most elite company in terms of October warmth? What might be of particular interest both to the public at large and to growers is that of the top 13 warmest Octobers none were followed by a cold winter. This could be good news for both hard pressed householders and growers who need to heat their homes and greenhouses after yet another hike in fuel costs.


Above: Summer plants still in bloom at Borde Hill Gardens, Sussex.