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Return of cold weather impacts Czech crops

In Czechia, a rapid transition from mid-20s Celsius to sub-zero temperatures has significant implications for agriculture, particularly affecting early-blooming and growing crops. Miroslav Havránek, from the Charles University Environment Centre, highlights the broader consequence as a potential reduction in crop yields. Specifically, fruit trees such as cherries and peaches, which had commenced blooming, may experience diminished yields or, in extreme cases, total loss of production.

Additionally, the stunted growth from the cold could result in smaller yields. This shift follows an unusually warm February and part of March, misleading nature into reacting as if spring had arrived, only to be countered by freezing temperatures harmful to crops.

The economic ramifications could extend to higher prices for tree-grown produce like peaches, apples, and plums, owing to the decreased yield. However, the final impact remains to be seen, influenced by various factors including the Czech Republic's integration into the European Common Market and the anticipated dry summer. The forthcoming drought, exacerbated by early high temperatures leading to soil water deficits, poses a potentially greater threat than the current cold spell. The broader trend of unpredictable weather patterns, attributed to climate change, prompts a reconsideration of agricultural practices.

Adaptations may include the use of greenhouses or irrigation technologies to safeguard yields, despite the associated costs and potential price increases for consumers. The growing variability in temperature extremes underscores the challenges faced by the agricultural sector.


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