We’re starting out with quite the chilly morning here in the Valley. Many areas bottomed out in the low to mid-30s this morning but I did not see any reports of frost. I suspect there may have been some patchy frost across the area but clouds prevented any widespread frost.
I know that many folks like to push the planting season and start putting plants out early. It’s important for early gardeners to note that NWS Pittsburgh does not begin to issue frost/freeze advisories and warnings until May 1 in east-central Ohio. So, use caution if you put plants out early. We can still get nights cold enough for frost.
A warm front will lift north through east-central Ohio today. This will bring not only temperatures warming to the mid-60s this afternoon but also a low-end threat for strong thunderstorms later this evening. It is not a big threat, but there’s the chance none-the-less. Gusty wind and small hail up to dime-size will be possible in any storms mainly this evening.
The Storm Prediction Center has all of the east-central Ohio region under a Marginal Risk (1/5) today.
The biggest concern with storms this evening will be damaging wind gusts. Small hail and an isolated tornado is also something we’ll have to watch for.
The bulk of the day will be dry. An isolated shower will be possible during the afternoon but the main threat for a strong thunderstorm will hold off until this evening.
Computer guidance this morning suggests the best time for us here in the Valley is between 6:00 PM and 9:00 PM this evening:
While the FutureCast radar really doesn’t look all that impressive, there will be some factors in place overhead that might lead to a gusty thunderstorm. Instability and moisture will be marginal but upper-level shear could lead to some rotating thunderstorms.
Thunderstorms will exit east of the region by midnight leaving us with decent odds for scattered showers the remainder of the night.
That frontal boundary will stall over central Ohio on Tuesday keeping the threat for showers and thunderstorms in the forecast for tomorrow.