Soils in good condition as soil temperatures decrease

Soils are in generally good condition ahead of the yellow rainfall warning tonight (September 29), which was issued for seven counties.

Well and moderately-drained soils in the south and south-east of the country are at soil moisture deficits (SMDs) of between 16mm and 21mm. In the midlands and east of the country SMDs are between 8mm and 13mm, with the exception of Casement Aerodrome where soils are just 4mm in deficit.

Well-drained soils at Malin Head are 10mm below field capacity, while along the west of the country readings are between 1mm and 5mm below field capacity.

Image source: Met Eireann

Poorly-drained soils

In the west of the country SMDs are between 2mm and -7mm, with the exception of Shannon Airport which is at 14mm.

Soils in the south and south-east are in better condition at between 12mm and 18mm.

In the midlands and east SMDs are ranging from 2mm to 8mm, apart from Casement Aerodrome which is at -5mm.

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.

Soil temperatures

According to Met Éireann, soil temperatures from September 21 to 27 are currently ranging from 11.4° to 14° across the country and most are above the average temperature for the time of year.

For example, the soil temperature at Johnstown Castle is 13°. This is 0.3° above normal. Temperatures in Oak Park are at 12.7°, which is 0.8° above normal.

However, the soil temperature at Dublin Airport is lower at 11.2°. This is 0.8° below normal.