June Looking Dry in Illinois

Here is the rain so far in June. Dryness stretches across the Corn Belt with the only significant rains falling in KS, KY, and southern MO and IL. The stretch from SD through central IL (shaded gray) showed no rainfall at all. At the same time, we have had sunny skies and low humidity – a good recipe for evaporating water out of the ground and transpiring it out of vegetation. Current estimates are that we are losing about 0.2 inches of moisture per day. That is not serious yet because of the wet May. However, if this pattern continues we could start to see trouble ahead.

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Speaking of the pattern continuing, here is the 5-day forecast of precipitation amounts. Notice the lack of precipitation across most of IL as well as the rest of the southern half of the Midwest. Even the areas shaded in green show only modest amount of rain (0.01 to 0.25 inches). The NOAA 6-10 and 8-14 day forecast show a return to wetter conditions. However, I have lower confidence in precipitation forecasts beyond 5 days. Furthermore, the models indicate a return to much warmer conditions, starting this weekend.

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