A persistent upper level weather pattern has allowed for rain in the Southern Plains as well as along the East Coast, but has left parts of the Deep South dry for the past month.
Current Abnormally Dry/Drought situation
The Drought Monitor which was prepared on Tuesday, May 24th, but not issued until Thursday May 26th, parts of Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina were outlined in Moderate Drought (D1 Status). This area was fairly consistent with Drought monitor prepared on May 17th. The change with the May 24th Drought Monitor was to extend the Abnormally Dry region (yellow area) into the northern and central Mississippi as well as portions of eastern Louisiana. Ironically, some these areas in Mississippi and Louisiana saw significant rains in March, but it has been fairly dry for April and May.
May rainfall across northern Mississippi, Alabama, south central Tennessee and parts of Georgia has generally been 2 inches and less with some areas only seeing 0.25 to 0.75 inches (Shown by the Greens and Blues in the graphic below.)
This is 50% of normal and less for many locations (Shown by the Oranges and Reds in the graphic below)
The lack of rain in May has not good news for farmers and the lack of moisture may impact crop growth and future yields.
There is some good news in the forecast a cold front will bring rain chances for middle to late this week and additional rain chances continue into next weekend. So through next Monday an average of 1.0 to 1.25 inches of rain is possible. However, the heavier precipitation amounts will be to the west in the Southern Plains – where they have seen flooding in the last week as well as in the Carolina’s/Mid Atlantic with the remnants of Bonnie.
Since we are in the heart of growing season, we encourage farmers and gardeners closely monitor your crops/vegetables. Even if you do receive rainfall, you may need to provide supplemental irrigation.
The team at WxIntegrations will continue to provide relevant information and resources to help you better understand and prepare by incorporating weather impacts into your planning and response.