Do April showers really bring May flowers?


EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — We’ve all heard the phrase “April showers bring May flowers.” But how true is it?

“People actually question that, especially around here, because if you’ve lived in the Borderland any length of time, we don’t really get a lot of April showers,” explained Jason Laney with the National Weather Service of El Paso.

The problem with the Borderland is that it’s located in the desert.

According to the National Weather Service, April showers are quite rare, meaning that’s not what provides us with our spring flowers.

“April is actually the driest month of the year on average for the El Paso area, averaging a little less than a quarter of an inch of rain each year,” said Laney.

So, what fuels our spring blossoms?

“The truth is, the flowers will be here long before May,” Laney said.

What really drives the flower production is the transitions to longer days and shorter nights and, because we’re located at a much lower latitude, our days start lengthening before more parts of the country.

However, “April showers bring May flowers” isn’t just a myth for those of us down in the Southwest.

“Believe it or not, average data from across the United States, April is also not the wettest month — that goes to the month of June,” added Laney.

The main question on everyone’s mind is, then, where did the saying come from and why did it become so popular considering it’s a pretty big misconception?

“The reason that people start to say this is because we do start seeing some climate changes, the jet stream starts to move around,” Laney explained. “Other parts of the country are starting to see the moisture come and that moisture, combined with the winter thaw, is just enough to get the flowers going.”

While the Borderland is still in an exceptional drought, try not to worry too much. Those El Paso poppies should be well on their way into taking over social media once again this season.

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