After more than sufficient rainfall this month, I’m sure you’re having a hard time keeping up with the lawn. I know I am! It seems like we have to mow every couple of days or it turns into a jungle. You’ve probably also noticed that after a thunderstorm rolls through, the grass looks amazingly green. Why is this? Well, the rain definitely helps, but the lightning also has a hand in it.
If you’re someone who periodically fertilizes your lawn, you know that one of the ingredients in fertilizer is usually a nitrate. Nitrates come from nitrogen and that’s what 78% of our atmosphere is made of.
Nature converts the nitrogen into nitrates giving our lawns, trees, gardens and fields a good shot of fertilizer. How does this happen? Well, the quickest way to convert nitrogen into nitrates is through a chemical process involving water and extreme heat. What better place to get extreme heat, then lightning! The average temperature of a lighting bolt is 55,000 degrees Fahrenheit! Compare that to the sun, which is approximately 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit and boy, is that hot!
The lightning bolt heats the air and the raindrops, converting the nitrogen to nitrates and is distributed with the rain as it falls to the ground. So the next time you’re cursing the lawn for growing so fast…blame the lightning! Happy mowing!
Meteorologist LeAnn Lombardo
Posted under Hometown Weather
This post was written by llombardo on June 29, 2010