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It might be time for the Flower Count, but it's still winter out there

Highway maintenance contractor Emcon Services reported snow was sticking to the ground on the Malahat and salt trucks were out plowing.
Snow hit the Malahat on Monday afternoon. DRIVE BC

It rained, it hailed and it snowed in the capital region on Monday, a reminder that winter is not quite over yet — even if it's time for the annual Greater Victoria Flower Count. 

Hail hit parts of Greater Victoria and coated streets, while snow started to fall mid-afternoon on the West Shore. Other areas just got a soaking rain.

Highway maintenance contractor Emcon Services reported snow was sticking to the ground on the Malahat on Monday evening. Salt trucks were out plowing and would be monitoring the situation overnight, it said.

DriveBC was reporting slushy sections on Highway 1, Highway 14 and Highway 17, and limited visibility due to fog on Highway 1A between Chemainus and Ladysmith.

Drivers were warned to check the latest conditions on the DriveBC site before heading out.

The conditions may have contributed to a motor vehicle accident in Saanich that shut down power to a broad stretch of the municipality around 4:20 p.m.

According to BC Hydro, more than 2,100 customers in Saanich were affected.

Environment Canada said with temperatures forecast to hit a low of zero at some point Monday, wet flurries were expected until the evening, and residents should expect anywhere between two and four centimetres of snow to pile up.

There is also a chance of flurries Tuesday overnight, though the daytime is forecast to be mainly sunny with a high of 6 C.

The forecast is similar for much of the Island’s east coast, with temperatures dipping below zero and a chance of snow from Victoria to Port Hardy.

Port Alberni, Tofino and Ucluelt could be spared the snow, but freezing nighttime lows are expected for a few days.

The reminder of winter came as the annual Greater Victoria Flower Count — the region’s way of bragging about its weather to the rest of Canada — launched Monday.

Counting doesn’t officially start until March 6, by which time the snow should be gone. For more information, go to