John Latimer

Staff Phenologist

As a mail carrier in rural Grand Rapids, Minn., for 35 years, John Latimer put his own stamp on a career that delivered more than letters. Indeed, while driving the hundred-mile round-trip daily route, he passed the time by observing and recording seasonal changes in nature, learning everything he could about the area’s weather, plants and animals, and becoming the go-to guy who could answer customers’ questions about what they were seeing in the environment.

The expertise he developed along the way turned him into one of Minnesota’s leading phenologists and host of a popular weekly radio show Phenology that attracts nature lovers and regular phenology contributors from around the state.

Ways to Connect

Lorrene Maroney via Season Watch

  Phenology is the rhythmic biological nature of events as they relate to climate.   Several school groups reached out to our phenologist John Latimer this week with reports of all kinds of natural wonders including king fishers, eggs hatching and even snakes.  There is so much going on out in the natural world this time of year. It's a fantastic time to be out and about taking note of all the changes going on!

Sue Keeler via KAXE-KBXE Season Watch Page

  Every Tuesday our own John Latimer reports on the subtle changes happening in nature in his Phenology Report.  Spring is here and northern Minnesota is very much alive with exciting new action that only happens in the spring.  Trees are leafing out, new insects are buzzing and crawling around, birds have returned and all kinds of babies are being born.  It's a good time in the north woods! 

Elissa Gallien via KAXE-KBXE Season Watch FB Page

    Tuesdays are special around Northern Community Radio.   During our morning show which is a mix of national news and local features, Tuesdays our local features are dedicated to nature.  Resident phenologist John Latimer shares phenology reports from classrooms across the listening area and shares his own insights as well.  This week we heard from a fantastic group of kiddos as you'll learn by listening to their reports.  Thanks to the kids and the adults who contacted us with their observations!

John Latimer via KAXE-KBXE Season Watch Page

Every Tuesday, our resident phenologist John Latimer talks to listeners about what he's been noticing in nature.  This week, there is a lot to report.  Spring is here and it's inspiring myriad natural activity! 

Have a phenology comment or questions? We'd love to hear from you! Give us a jingle and leave a message at 218.999.9876 or send an email

We heard from a lot of keen young phenologists this week!  Reports include sights and sounds of a toad, wood frogs, frosty mornings, and currant leaves, loons, a lesson in trumpeter swans and even a boat race in Virginia that John Latimer was involved in.   These kids are engaged with their outdoors.  Bravo! Minnesota kids are so cool!

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