Georgians may have scoffed at the Feb. 2 prediction of the state's forecasting groundhog when last month was the warmest on record in many cities.
Now, with snow possible in higher elevations this week, it looks like Gen. Beauregard Lee's pronouncement of six more weeks of winter will ring true.
The National Weather Service reports some light snow is possible in the northeast Georgia mountains Wednesday and then again Friday and Sunday nights in small pockets of higher elevations.
Colder air will be moving into the state, with freezing temperatures expected Thursday and Friday mornings as far south as Macon, which could be too close for comfort for some of the state's peach crop.
Macon, Columbus, Athens, Augusta and Atlanta all had their highest average temperatures for February, Georgia climatologist Bill Murphey said.
In mid-February, growers at Dickey Farms in Musella were anticipating a bountiful crop, as chill hours below 45 degrees had already hit the magic number of 1,000 for the season, according to the farm's Facebook page.
Peach trees need cold weather to go dormant to set up boughs of pink blooms that set fruit in the spring.
Last winter's mild weather and record low number of chill hours hurt the Georgia crop, with yields as low as 20 percent of normal.
February's warmth has Peach County's trees about 10 days ahead of schedule, UGA Cooperative Extension Coordinator Jeff Cook said.
Farther north near Griffin, where trees had an even greater number of chill hours, buds are about 16 days early.
"We'll probably have some pockets of frost and see a little bit of damage, but I don't think it will be widespread," Cook said.
Freezing temperatures late in the season can kill blossoms and baby fruit, preventing them from developing into peaches, which was the case during the Easter freeze of 2007.
Most of the trees in the midstate and northward are past the bloom stage, Cook said.
Since temperatures are not expected to be below freezing for long, he does not anticipate major damage this week.
Lee Dickey is worried about his "naked peaches," those whose petals have dropped and have already broken out of their protective shucks.
But losing some of the tree's fruit makes for larger, better peaches.
"Sometimes it works in your benefit when it only hurts a few," Dickey said. "A little nip is almost good."
This week's cold snap also threatens the farm's strawberry crop, but it is not expected to do major damage.
Even if some strawberries are damaged this week, the plants should continue to put out berries unless temperatures drop way into the 20s, which is not expected, Dickey said.
His crews will be putting blankets over the strawberry beds to keep them 3-5 degrees warmer than the near-freezing air temperature.
"So in the worst case scenario, it just slows them down," Dickey said.
Although mornings will be cold, Macon's high temperatures Wednesday and Thursday will reach the upper 50s but with winds gusting to about 25 mph.
By the weekend, Middle Georgia highs will be near 70 degrees.