Soil moisture deficits…no deficit this week

Soil moisture deficits (SMDs) are starting to look a lot less attractive than they have all year. On Wednesday (November 28) SMDs were at -10 in some areas.

The SMD is the amount of rain needed to bring the soil back to field capacity. An SMD of -10 means that the soil is at saturation point.

Last week, many areas were at field capacity and following heavy rain this week SMDs have surpassed this mark.

Well-drained soils across the country were at field capacity (0) on Wednesday (November 28). Moderately-drained soils varied across the country.

SMD figures on moderately-drained soils were at -10 in counties Wexford, Kerry, Galway and Mayo. Less rain fell near Casement Aerodrome than many other parts of the country and SMD levels reflect this at -2 and -3.

In the midlands SMDs, on moderately-drained soils, were between -4 and -7.

Poorly-drained soils were at SMDs of -10 across the country. In other words, these soils were at saturation point.

Source: Met Eireann

Very different from the summer’s figures

These figures are in stark difference to SMD figures from July. At that time of the year 98mm of rain were needed to bring some soils back to field capacity and the country was in drought.

SMDs of between 45 and 98 were recorded on July 17 across many different soil types.