, Volume 44, Issue 2, pp 82-87

An examination of the relationship between flowering times and temperature at the national scale using long-term phenological records from the UK

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Abstract 

This paper examines the mean flowering times of 11 plant species in the British Isles over a 58-year period, and the flowering times of a further 13 (and leafing time of an additional 1) for a reduced period of 20 years. Timings were compared to Central England temperatures and all 25 phenological events were significantly related (P<0.001 in all but 1 case) to temperature. These findings are discussed in relation to other published work. The conclusions drawn from this work are that timings of spring and summer species will get progressively earlier as the climate warms, but that the lower limit for a flowering date is probably best determined by examining species phenology at the southern limit of their distribution.

Received: 21 October 1999 / Revised: 27 January 2000 / Accepted: 27 January 2000