Rain doesn’t slow down drought expansion

LINTON, N.D. — Rain has fallen in much of central North Dakota in the past week, but that wasn’t enough to keep the area in severe drought in the state from doubling.
The June 13 U.S. Drought Monitor, released on June 15, reports 27 percent of North Dakota is in severe drought, compared to 13.54 percent the week prior.
An additional 56.4 percent is considered to have moderate drought conditions, while the remainder of the state is abnormally dry.
South Dakota’s severe drought area increased to 13.14 percent from 11.37 percent the past week.
There also needs to be an improvement in the effects of the drought to consider pulling the area out of the severe drought designation, he says.
Some may not have gotten tall enough to harvest — Egeland says some small grains are shorter than 10 inches.
But pastures and row crops might recover now given the more than 2 inches that fell in the area in the past week, especially if more timely rains follow.
Egeland says pastures near the South Dakota border were brown.
The land can’t recover immediately from months of too little moisture, but people’s spirits were up right away, Egeland says.
A lot could change as the summer wears on.

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