One of my grammar books says:

The future use of the present progressive is limited to actions brought about by human endeavour.

Therefore sentences such as "It's raining tomorrow" or "The trees are losing their leaves soon." are incorrect.

However, another grammar book says:

The present progressive can also be used with inanimate subjects, but only if the action or event is arranged, scheduled, or highly predictable; for example: According to the weather channel, it’s getting warmer tomorrow. The cherry trees in Washington are blooming next week.

If "It's raining tomorrow" is incorrect, how can "it's getting warmer tomorrow" be OK?

Do they sound correct to native-speakers?

  • 1
    Obviously written by someone who didn't know that all continuous constructions (not just the ones that happen to refer to the future) are restricted to semantically active verbs, though not only to those performed by human agents, though that's the most common kind. Get a better grammar book. Commented Sep 25, 2023 at 0:34
  • 1
    It's normally planned future, but sometimes the format is used of a hoped-for future outcome. Hence it works better for getting warmer than for raining. Commented Sep 25, 2023 at 0:34

1 Answer 1


One book is right and one is wrong. If the first grammar book says exactly what you say, it is too limited.

Phrases like "it's raining tomorrow" and "it's getting warmer tomorrow" are both fine.

You can even place an event in the fairly distant future, so long as there is an indication of the timing of the planned event in the sentence.

The dog is being groomed in three months.

Earth's magnetic fields are reaching their weakest point since the 1400s in the late 21st century.

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