Across the country, recent rainfall has brought relief to some of the driest areas. However, the drought is forecasted to persist in the West and other areas could develop droughts throughout the summer. If you are located in a dry area, be prepared to pay extra attention to watering your greens and turf.
The drought in the West looks to thrive through summer, as the water supply situation stays the same or gets worse in coming months because of below average snow accumulation from the past winter season. The summer thunderstorm season during July and August will only bring short-term relief from dryness, and the long-term drought should last until next winter's snow season.
In the Pacific Northwest, dry weather in April contributed to low streamflows and decreasing soil moisture, and the forecast for below-normal rainfall and above-normal temperatures has increased the odds for drought development. However, drought is not expected to develop in coastal sections.
Recent rains have brought significant drought relief to the upper Midwest, which should continue, especially in Minnesota and eastern and central portions of the Dakotas and Nebraska. Only limited improvement is expected in western Kansas, and there is increased risk of drought development over western and central Oklahoma and portions of southern Kansas and northern Texas.
Drought will persist in the Southeast, but there should be improvement by the end of August. With the increase in temperatures, evaporation and water demand that are typical in the summer, drought relief could become more difficult as higher temperatures take hold.
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