Beth Hall

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After several weeks of above-normal precipitation across much of Indiana, we are now entering a relative dry period.  The national Climate Prediction Center is indicating enhanced chances for below-normal precipitation amounts over the next several weeks.  Temperatures are also expected to be above normal over this period which will cause increased rates of evapotranspiration.  This may induce the onset and establishment of a flash drought – defined as a rapid intensification of drought conditions and impacts sustained for a relatively short amount of time (e.g., less than a year).  The key is to start planning and preparing for this now, even if a flash drought does not end up developing, so that one is being proactive rather than reactive to drought impacts. Modified growing degree days range from about 1500 units (northern Indiana) to 200 units (southern Indiana) (Figure 1).  With temperatures being relatively mild lately, this has kept accumulated[Read More…]

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For those keeping track, last week’s article (“How likely will drought develop or worsen in Indiana”) and the article two weeks ago (“Nature’s faucets predicted to be turning off for the rest of the month”) had an overlapping theme – Indiana is behind in precipitation amounts from the climatological normals and the climate outlooks are not too confident that above-normal precipitation will catch the state up from its deficits.