Can a paperback provide accurate weather predictions? Take the Farmers' Almanac quiz!


Since 1818, people throughout the country have relied on the "Farmers' Almanac" for when to plant and harvest crops, how to manage households, and when to wean or slaughter farm animals. Nearly 200 years after the first issue, it continues to thrive.

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Question 1 of 20

How far ahead does the Farmers' Almanac predict the weather?

one year
two years
five years

... "Farmers' Almanac" predicts the weather as far as two years out. These predictions are made using a top-secret formula that's based on a combination of math and astronomy.


Question 2 of 20

Who is the weather forecaster for the Farmers' Almanac?

Belle Thunderbolt
Stewart Windward
Caleb Weatherbee

... Since the earliest edition of "Farmers' Almanac," Caleb Weatherbee has served as the head forecaster. Weatherbee is a pen name which is passed down through the Almanac's forecasters, leaving his or her true identity a mystery.


Question 3 of 20

Which of the following will you NOT find in the astronomy section of Farmers' Almanac?

daily horoscopes
moon phases
tide charts

... "Farmers' Almanac" provides information on moon phases, tide charts and special astronomical events, but you'll have to look elsewhere for your daily horoscope.


Question 4 of 20

Fact or fiction: In 2005, Farmers' Almanac got its own weekly TV show, which aired on public TV stations across the United States.


... Fact: "Farmers' Almanac TV" debuted in 2005 with a weekly public television series. Unfortunately, the series was discontinued in 2009.


Question 5 of 20

How accurate does Farmers' Almanac rate its own weather forecasts?

50 to 55 percent
65 to 70 percent
80 to 85 percent

... On its Web site, "Farmers' Almanac" claims an accuracy rate of 80 to 85 percent when it comes to weather forecasts. The publication also references a survey suggesting that Americans trust it more than the National Weather Service when it comes to accurate forecasting.


Question 6 of 20

Fact or fiction: Forecasts made by the Farmers' Almanac are typically much more accurate than those made using traditional means of weather forecasting.


... Fiction: Both the "Farmers' Almanac" and the "Old Farmers' Almanac" claim a forecast accuracy rate of 80 to 85 percent. But studies performed using weather forecasts from the "Old Farmers' Almanac" show a forecast accuracy rate closer to 50 percent.


Question 7 of 20

How many copies of the Farmers' Almanac are sold each year?

fewer than 1 million
about 3.5 million
8 to 10 million

... About 3.5 million copies of the "Farmers' Almanac" are sold each year. Most are purchased by businesses, which use them as promotional items.


Question 8 of 20

Which U.S. president, according to lore, relied on the Farmers' Almanac when arguing a legal case?

George Washington
Theodore Roosevelt
Abraham Lincoln

... Legend has it that Abraham Lincoln used a copy of the "Farmers' Almanac" to get a murder suspect off the hook during an 1858 murder trial. Moon charts found in the Almanac suggested that a witness to the murder must have been lying when he claimed that the moon was high in the sky on the night of the murder.


Question 9 of 20

What title do many editors of the Farmers' Almanac take on?


... Since editor David Young published the first edition of the "Farmers' Almanac" in 1818, each editor has taken on the title of "philom," which means "lover of learning."


Question 10 of 20

Fact or fiction: The Farmers' Almanac has always come with a pre-drilled hole in the top left corner so users can hang the book on a nail.


... Fiction: Readers traditionally nailed a hole in the Farmers' Almanac so they could hang the book up, but it wasn't until 1910 that the Farmers' Almanac was issued with a pre-drilled hole.


Question 11 of 20

When was the Farmers' Almanac Web site launched?


... The "Farmers' Almanac" Web site was launched in 1997. Online readers increase the publication's total audience to around 7 million people each year.


Question 12 of 20

Which of the following "Best Days" will you NOT find in the Farmers' Almanac?

best day to mow the lawn
best day to repair a tractor
best day to castrate farm animals

... The "Farmers' Almanac" provides suggestions for the best days to perform various activities, including mowing the lawn, castrating or slaughtering animals or even starting a diet. But there's nothing in there about the best day to repair a tractor.


Question 13 of 20

Fact or fiction: The Farmers' Almanac and the Old Farmers' Almanac are the same publication.


... Fiction: The "Old Farmers' Almanac" was first published in 1792, while the "Farmers' Almanac" was first published in 1818. Both books have about the same circulation in 2012, with 3.5 to 4 million copies sold each year.


Question 14 of 20

Which of the following topics are not typically covered in the Farmers' Almanac?

sustainable living

... While you'll find plenty of information on weather, gardening, fishing and sustainable living in the "Farmers' Almanac," you won't find much discussion of modern technology.


Question 15 of 20

How many editors have managed the Farmers' Almanac throughout its first 200 years?


... The "Farmers' Almanac" has had just seven editors, including Ray Geiger, who led the publication for a staggering 60 years.


Question 16 of 20

How far ahead can traditional weather forecasters predict the weather with any degree of accuracy?

about six months
up to three months
no more than 14 days

... While almanacs publish forecasts years in advance, most traditional weather forecasters can only go out about 14 days with any accuracy, and they agree that the almanacs' extended forecasts are unlikely to provide any degree of accuracy beyond chance.


Question 17 of 20

How many different print editions of the Farmers' Almanac are published each year?


... Readers can choose from three print editions of the "Farmers' Almanac," including a retail version, a promotional version and one intended for the Canadian market.


Question 18 of 20

What term does the Farmers' Almanac use to describe a second full moon in a single month?

blue moon
harvest moon
farmers' moon

... According to the "Farmers' Almanac," blue moons occur every 2.5 to 3 years.


Question 19 of 20

How many different forecast zones does the Farmers' Almanac cover within the U.S.?


... The "Farmers' Almanac" provides weather information for seven U.S. forecast zones, but doesn't offer forecasts for Alaska or Hawaii.


Question 20 of 20

What famous thinker was behind Poor Richard's Almanac, which was first published in 1732?

George Washington
Benjamin Franklin
Thomas Jefferson

... Benjamin Franklin published an early American almanac under the pen name Richard Saunders. His almanac sold about 10,000 copies per year.


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