First Saskatchewan killer frost on the horizon

After a hot and dry summer, the fall weather seems to be all over the place since the start of October.

For the past week, it has been nothing but heavy, dark clouds and rainfall in the Queen City.

But is this weather normal this time of year? According to Environment Canada, these conditions are nowhere out of the ordinary.

“Because we haven’t had any rain especially through the month of September and all of a sudden it started raining, I think people thought that that was unusual,” Terri Lang, a meteorologist with Environment Canada said.

What is unusual is the severe weather systems that have moved through the province, bringing thunderstorms and hail according to Lang.

But for those who like the cold, well, you might be in luck.

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Lang said the recent rains are leading into the first killing frost of the fall season, as early as Thursday night.

“Temperatures are getting to be minus four, minus five and the temperatures in that range last a long time, so a few hours and that’s enough to kill most of the vegetation.”

For some, however, the frost may be a welcome sight — specifically for flax farmers across the province.

Matthew Struthers, a crop specialist with the province, said any frost will help stop the regrowth that is occurring due to the recent rain.

“Flax is just one of those hardy crops that sometimes you need to knock it down and sometimes Mother Nature will do that for you,” Struthers said.

“A good killing frost will knock down any of that regrowth on that flax and get it ready for harvest. And then I know those combines will roll through much easier.”

Matthew Struthers is a crops extension specialist with the province.

Derek Putz / Global News

For producers not working with flax, rain is a welcome sight.

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According to this week’s crop report, 95 per cent of harvest is finished province wide, ahead of the five-year average of 84 per cent.

And with most crops in the bin, rain is needed to replenish nutrients and topsoil moisture.

“The one thing this rain will do is green up those pastures more than anything,” Struthers said. “To replenish the topsoil moisture we need a lot more than we got in this past week so I’ve got my fingers crossed that more is on the way.”

For those looking for one last blast of summer, Lang expects temperatures in the 20s for both of the province’s largest cities.

“It’ll make for I think a very nice Thanksgiving Day weekend, especially given how many people are travelling, how many people are on the roads and how many people are gathering together,” Lang said.

Click to play video: 'Colder weather sweeping in: Sept. 26 Saskatchewan weather outlook'

Colder weather sweeping in: Sept. 26 Saskatchewan weather outlook

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