The Humboldt University of Berlin (HU) began collecting weather data at the agricultural teaching and research station in Berge near Nauen in the year 1951. The weather station was operated for many years by the Meteorological Service of the GDR and then taken over by the German Weather Service (DWD).
Until 15 years ago, the staff of our research station was manual, which meant that the observer had to read the temperatures on thermometers three times a day, as well as determine the cloud cover and the soil moisture. Seven days a week, 365 days a year.
The only manual activity that remains today is measuring the snow depth every morning at 7 am (even when there is no snow). Air temperatures, ground temperatures, precipitation, wind speed and direction, humidity are measured automatically.
Since the beginning of the measurement series, the annual average in Berge has become about 2.6 °C warmer. The year 2021 was an average year with a mean temperature of 9.8 °C and 490 mm of precipitation. However, the values do not show that there was almost no precipitation from mid-May to the end of June, but that there were already five days with daily maximum temperatures above 30 °C during this period. As a result it was significant heat and drought stress for the winter cereals. However, summer crops such as sunflowers, potatoes and maize benefited from the weather.
The Märkische Allgemeine reports on our experimental station in Berge and on the results of our long-term weather measurements. Increasing water shortages in the region are causing trees to die and soils to dry out.
"The heat stress for trees and plants is increasing," says Dr Andreas Muskolus, the head of our experimental station. Nevertheless, we are pleased that the results of our research are reaching an increasingly wider public through the media.