Farm & Garden Forecast
One more hot day lies ahead on Friday; a rapid increase in moisture on a southerly flow from the Gulf of Mexico sets up a good chance of scattered thunderstorms through the weekend. An isolated shower is technically possible on Friday, but very few of us will have to deal with rainfall before midday Saturday.
The best chance of rain on Saturday is west of I-65 in the afternoon and evening. This is not a one-size-fits-all kind of rain event; we expect heavy downpours in spots while others get little or nothing at all. Seven-day rainfall guidance from NOAA’s WPC shows a good soaking area-wide with at least an inch of rain falling between Saturday and Monday afternoon. A more realistic picture would be a range of rainfall from a minimum of 0.25″ to a maximum near two inches over that three day period.
Again, this is not a uniform rain event. If you are planning time-consuming outdoor work this weekend, be sure to check out WHNT News 19’s online and mobile resources including the WHNT/Baron Services Alabama Saf-T-Net App. That app will alert you to storms developing/moving within a 25 miles radius of your GPS location: WHNT News 19 Apps.
Beyond the weekend rainfall, there is a good chance we will be hotter and drier again for most of next week; highs return to the lower and middle 90s again as early as Tuesday and Wednesday with very little chance of scattered storms.
See the entire forecast discussion at WHNT.com/Weather!
Drying Potential: Friday has the best drying potential of any day in the next week. Temperatures soar into the 90s; afternoon relative humidity drops to the 25-35% range between 11 AM and 7 PM. A very humid air mass moves in for the weekend; that along with clouds and scattered downpours mean poor drying conditions through Sunday. It does improve some on Monday, but the best potential next week comes from Tuesday to Thursday.
Lawns & Home Gardens: Irrigation on Friday morning is a good thing; it will enhance the effect of weekend rainfall on your lawn or garden. Watering in the afternoon does little good; watering at night tends to increase the number of insects in the lawn and garden. Light watering is recommended this weekend in areas that don’t get the best of the rainfall.
Hay Fields: Hay should be up no later than mid-morning Saturday due to the expected heavy (but scattered) downpours. Plan to start cutting again on Tuesday, but remember isolated storms are still possible through the end of next week!
Spraying & Spreading: Dry fertilizers and pesticides will likely need supplemental water even with the isolated showers and storms in the forecast unless you spread them on Friday or early Saturday morning. Sprayed applications needing dry weather should be used through Friday for optimum effect.
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The latest Lawn & Garden Index from NSSTC/Dr. John Christy – Alabama’s State Climatologist:
Five Day Rainfall Expectations from WPC: