Frost and flowers seem like two words that just shouldn't work together but that's not the case in this country. Frost flowers in Canada are popping up on fresh ice and they are so beautiful. These breathtaking but delicate flowers are a rare sight because they need a specific combination of weather and ice conditions to form.

In B.C., Alberta, the Arctic and other parts of Canada, frost flowers have been spotted for the last little while on ice-covered lakes, ponds and even the ocean. 

Even though this unique type of flower is made of ice, it's still very delicate and often break easily when touched so you might want to look and not touch.

This rare sight usually happens at the beginning of the winter season because the ice has to be newly formed and fairly thin so that the temperature of the ice isn't too cold. 

Then the weather has to be cold and calm. 

For the frost flowers to form the wind has to be below 5 km/h and the air temperature has to be at least -15°C.

Even though this unique type of flower is made of ice, it's still very delicate and often break easily when touched so you might want to look and not touch.

Also if you spot them on a frozen lake, be careful about stepping on the ice to go and see them because it could be very thin and dangerous.

Frost flowers are commonly found growing on newly formed sea ice but they form on thin lake ice as well.

When the air is much colder than the ice and is also moist, the frost flowers start to take shape. 

Under these very specific conditions, that difference in temperature between the air and the ice makes the ice, a solid, change to a gas.

When the gas touches the cold air, the moisture in it freezes and flower-like petals of frost are created.

According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center in the U.S., frost flowers make the surface of the ice rougher and actually affect the ice's electromagnetic signal.

If you see these fern-like frost flowers in person, count yourself lucky. 

Once the ice starts to grow thicker, the upper surface of the ice cools down and it's no longer possible for frost flowers to grow.


There are stories everywhere. If you spot a newsworthy event in your city, send us a message, photo, or video @NarcityCanada on Twitter and Instagram.


Comments are now closed.
Account Settings
Notifications
Favourites
Share Feedback
Log Out

Register this device to receive push notifications