Wonderful Glen Koehler, from the University of Maine, has once again set us up with AgRadar – formerly called Orchard Radar. Glen has taken many, many models that have been developed over the years to help predict apple insects and diseases, bud stages, fruit thinning, and harvest maturity. The models are run on weather data provided by SkyBit for two sites in RI – Greenville and Middletown. Pick the site closest to you to view the models from the RI Apple IPM website at http://web.uri.edu/ipm/ Links to both sites are on the left hand side under Orchard Radar.
It takes some time to get comfortable using this, but it’s a good investment of your time! This site will be extremely useful this spring for predicting fire blight infections.
Another website with lots of apple models using weather data is NEWA from Cornell University. NEWA uses ground weather stations from airports or stations specifically set up for NEWA. There is a NEWA weather station at Newport Vineyards in Middletown. This website is larger and contains models for apples, grapes, onions, potatoes, tomatoes, and sweet corn.
On the map on the homepage, select Middletown, RI (alphabetical by town name) or click on the airplane icon in RI for the TF Green Airport weather site to get started. You need to dedicate time to get familiar with using the site, as with AgRadar. See NEWA at http://newa.cornell.edu/
Take some time and look at one or both models. I can help you if you have trouble using these tools.