Rain Was Too Little Too Late

Recent rains are certainly appreciated, but as a whole, it has not been enough and it is too little too late for the farmers.

The above map is a rainfall estimate map for the past 30 days. Notice parts of Gulf as well as Okaloosa Counties has seen 8-10" of rainfall.  Certainly good news in what is climatologically our driest time of year.  That said, not all of us has seen the rain.  Rainfall totals near I-10 toward the farming areas of Jackson and Holmes Counties has seen 1-2" of rainfall.  Certainly not enough.

Which is why that part of NW Florida remins in a moderate to extreme drought.  The bad news is that in a La Nina weather pattern...  consistent winter rains are not expected.  Certainly heavy rains like we have gotten with the last 2 systems are possible, but it is not expected to be often or widespread enough to help our situation and recharge our water tables into the spring planting/farming season.

Below are the 3 month temperature/precipitation forecasts for the US.  This forecast is in line with a typical La Nina weather pattern for us...  warmer and drier than normal.


So, with the dry and warm forecast for the winter ahead I am sure the question my farming friends are asking... when will we return to 'normal?'  Well, a typical La Nina weather pattern lasts 9-12 months, but in some cases can linger for 2 years.  Remember, we were in an El Nino pattern this time last year and then then La Nina developed this summer.  So, hopefully by next Fall we will begin to see precipitation and temperature levels return to normal levels.

Of course we will continue to monitor the situation and keep you posted.  In the mean time you can always read NOAA's status of La Nina here.

Thanks as always for watching!

--Chris Smith
Chief Meteorologist

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