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A Modern Look at the Weather Almanac

When was the last time you thumbed through a weather almanac? When farmers needed advice about when to plant their crops, they referred to their farmerís almanac, where weather predictions, moon charts, tidal charts and other information was right at their finger tips. A weather almanac seems quaint by modern standards. Why refer to a book printed once a year when you can get current weather information by turning on the TV or surfing the Internet?

Weather almanacs have addressed that concern and have evolved with the times. Today, not only can you buy a printed copy just like the farmers of yesteryear, but you can also visit weather almanac websites where youíll find articles, blogs, natural remedies, almanac weather predictions, phases of the moon, recipes, tips, community forums, gardening schedules, and much more.

Traditions of the Almanac
Farmerís almanac weather traditions include listing specific days for specific tasks. This tradition is nearly 200 years old, and the theory is that when the moon is in a certain phase and location within the zodiac, certain tasks have better outcomes. For example, itís considered best to plant between the new and full moon if you want the best fertility and growth; harvesting and weeding should be done in the phase between the full moon and the new moon. A weather almanac lists specific days of each month for specific tasks. While many of the tasks are related to weather or farming, others are of the household variety, including which days are good for washing wooden floors or painting the house.

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Each year, a new weather almanac is published with weather predictions made for the coming seasons. Almanac weather prediction has been surprisingly accurate with successful predictions manifesting. For example, the Farmerís Almanac warned in 2005 that two major hurricanes would strike the same Gulf Coast area during that yearís hurricane season. Those two hurricanes, Katrina and Rita arrived right on schedule and devastated the Gulf Coast. Numerous examples such as this one exist where weather in history was accurately predicted by a weather almanac.

Workings of the Weather Almanac
How does a weather almanac make long term predictions a year or more in advance? In the Farmerís almanacís case, the publisher uses a formula thatís been handed down and carefully guarded for generations. Moon phases, sun spots, the zodiac, and other conditions of the atmosphere are scrutinized and predictions are made. Like any weather forecasting, the weather almanac method of predicting the weather isnít perfect. For best results, use a weather almanac for general seasonal information and follow current, local and national weather forecasts for day-to-day weather predictions.

In addition to weather readings, an almanac is filled with fun tidbits, informative articles and advice. Youíll be able to determine everything from when to plant and when to harvest, to the best dates to get married. Whether you follow the directions and plan your life around the phases of the moon is up to you, but youíre sure to find a great deal of useful information within the pages of a quality weather almanac.

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