The climate of all the major regions of Louisiana is characterized by short mild winters and long, hot, and generally humid summers.
Average January temperatures range from less than 8°C (46°F) in northwestern Louisiana to more than 13°C (55°F) in the southeastern delta country. Temperatures in the -20°s C (below 0°F) have been recorded, but prolonged periods of cold weather are extremely rare. July averages are in the upper 20°s C (lower 80°s F) throughout the state. Daytime highs are rarely more than 35°C (95°F), but the constantly high relative humidity causes some discomfort. In the coastal areas the high temperatures and relative humidity are tempered by cool breezes that blow inshore from the Gulf. Nighttime lows are generally in the mid-20°s C (higher 70°s F) during much of the summer.
Total annual precipitation, mostly in the form of rain, ranges from about 1,100 mm (about 48 in) in northwestern Louisiana to more than 1,500 mm (60 in) in the southeast. Snow, ice and hail are rare in Louisiana. Thunderstorms are frequent in July, which is the wettest month, and tropical storms and hurricanes sometimes strike the coast, usually between July and September. Droughts are seldom severe. Ice storms are an infrequent but dangerous event.
Throughout most of Louisiana the growing season, or period from the last major frost in spring to the first major frost in fall, is more than 210 days. In most of the state it varies in length from 210 up to 260 days, but along the lower Mississippi as many as 350 days may be frost free. In some decades there have been entire winters during which damaging frosts have not occurred in farming areas in the southernmost sections of the state. © "United States" © Emmanuel Buchot and Encarta
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