Five million crocuses bring a touch of spring to the Rhineland

The banks of the Rhine River near Düsseldorf have taken on an extra dash of springtime colour, after an initiative planted five million crocus bulbs along the water.

Five million crocuses bring a touch of spring to the Rhineland
Nice work - Ingo Lenz, left, and Hans-Otto Christiansen Photo: DPA

The flowering bulbs were bought and planted by a local group set up by Hans-Otto Christiansen and Ingo Lentz, chairmen of the ‘Pro-Düsseldorf’ voluntary association.

They bought the crocus bulbs from Holland and used machines – and the efforts of more than 2,000 volunteers – to plant them along a 1.3 kilometre stretch of the river.

The weather is even cooperating this weekend, with meteorologists predicting a spring-like few days with temperatures of up to 17 degrees Celsius in some areas of the country.

The southwest as ever, will get the best of it on Saturday, the German Weather Service said, while elsewhere cloud cover will hide the sun and in the south, even produce rain.

Northeast of the Elbe, temperatures will creep up to only between eight and 11 degrees while elsewhere they could rise as far as 15 degrees.

Sunday is expected to be rainier in the southwest, central and southern areas of the country while the northwest will remain dry and have some sun with temperatures up to 10 degrees, or 13 along the Rhine.

But by the middle of next week the grey chill of winter will return, the weathermen warned.

Click here for The Local’s weather forecast.


What temperatures can we expect in Germany this week?

Parts of Germany will see another heatwave this week as temperatures soar.

What temperatures can we expect in Germany this week?

The German Weather Service (DWD) has predicted that the mercury will climb in some regions of to around 34C this week. 

“After low pressure ‘Karin’ gave parts of Germany rain, sometimes in large quantities, high pressure ‘Piet’ is now back in pole position,” said meteorologist Lars Kirchhübel of the DWD.

This high pressure zone will dominate the weather in large parts of western and central Europe over the coming days, the weather expert said, adding that it will reach Germany too. 

On Monday temperatures remained fairly cool across the country after a weekend of showers, but they are set to climb over the course of the week, particularly on Wednesday and Thursday. Forecasters predict it could reach 32C in Stuttgart and 33C in Cologne on Thursday. Locally, temperatures could reach 34C. 

However, from the Oder and Neisse rivers to the Erzgebirge mountains and southeast Bavaria, denser clouds and some showers are to be expected. This is due to a high-level low pressure system over the Balkan region, according to forecasters. Short showers are also possible in the Black Forest.

“In most of the rest of the country, high ‘Piet’ will be able to hold its ground,” said Kirchhübel.

READ ALSO: Heavy rain in Bavaria swells rivers, but flooding avoided

At the end of the week, thunderstorms are forecast but temperatures are expected to remain high. 

August in Germany ‘too dry’

According to the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, August as a whole – apart from a few areas in eastern Germany – will be too dry compared to the multi-year average.

The Black Forest, the High Rhine and the Allgäu to the Bavarian Forest, however, are not expected to have any major problems due to the high rainfall of the past few days.

“Looking at Rhineland-Palatinate, the southern half of Hesse, the western half of North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Franconia shows a different picture,” said Kirchhübel. In the last 30 days, only about 10 percent of the usual level of precipitation fell in some places.

“At some stations, no precipitation at all has been measured in August,” added Kirchhübel, referencing Würzburg as an example.

Rainfall at the weekend caused the water in the Rhine river to rise slightly. In Emmerich, the water level reached a positive value again after the historic low of the past few days: in the morning, it showed three centimetres – an increase of six centimetres compared to the previous day.

The water level also rose by several centimetres at the other measuring points in North Rhine-Westphalia: in Cologne, the level rose to 80cm and in Düsseldorf to 38cm.

READ ALSO: Damaged freighter blocks traffic at drought-hit Rhine

Despite this encouraging trend, the Waterways and Shipping Authority said it did not expect a huge improvement in water levels in the foreseeable future due to more hot weather coming.