Three weeks rain in one hour

After the heatwave came huge thunderstorms delivering record breaking rainfall over Southern England today. Around three weeks of rain arrived in one hour in parts of East Sussex bringing chaos and flash flooding that affected the morning rush hour.

Here is my East Sussex garden at 9.30am today. A very different scene to the beautiful blue cloudless skies that I have woken up to over the past two weeks of glorious sunshine and tropical temperatures. storm in garden

Sudden and very heavy rainfall can be expected as climate change takes hold and our weather becomes more extreme. Many think that winter flooding is more of a problem but  during long hot summers flooding can have a much worse effect than the steady rainfall typical of winter. This is because  because the dry land is less capable of absorbing water, and when too much falls in a short period it runs off, causing flash floods of the type that struck Boscastle in 2004, one of the worst examples of sudden localised flooding in recent years.

The Met Office issued warnings about the increase of summer flooding earlier this year. They confirmed that flash flooding in summer is likely to become much more frequent across the UK as a result of climate change, with potentially devastating results in vulnerable areas, according to new research, the result of a collaboration between the Met Office and Newcastle University.

The study, published in the peer-review journal Nature Climate Change, is the first to draw a direct link between climate change and an increase in summer downpours.It used climate change computer models and standard weather prediction models of the type used for short-term weather forecasts. It found that UK summers would be drier overall, but punctuated by more extreme downpours. 

Gardeners often have  their flowers and plants damaged by heavy rainfall and flash flooding is seriously becoming a major issue for many UK gardeners.

Observing  the changing climate and how it effects our gardens and plants helps us  to understand what climate change means . Hopefully it may prompt us to adapt our lifestyles and prepare for an uncertain climatic future. This is one of the main reasons why I set up Climate Gardens – to create a positive way of engaging with climate change that aims to inspire action.

How did your garden cope with heavy rain this summer?

This post was written by:

- who has written 872 posts on My Climate Change Garden.

I am not an experienced gardener - more of an enthusiastic amateur who learns by trial and error and who is keen to "manage" the effects of shifting weather patterns on my garden. Writing this blog is my passion and it has evolved over 12 years to inspire engagement with climate change outside our back doors, in our personal gardens and green spaces. My mission is to fertilise and expand this platform to grow a community of global gardeners communicating about the effects of climate change on our plants and exploring how each individual can make small changes in our lives to become more sustainable. The future of our gardens and #OurPlanet is in our hands - please plant your own seeds for our collective sustainable future.

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