Lack of rain in Upstate South Carolina

Don M

To begin with August was much drier than normal, but we planted out 40 acres of food plots mainly of grain mix and brassica strips. Interesting enough we did about 1/2 via conventional tillage and the remainder no-til with a Great Plains unit. Since then we have had only 0.44" of rain and none insight for the next 2 weeks. We are not behind 9+ inches in our total annual rainfall. Most of the plots came up but the no-til ones have held up the best. The conventional tillage came up but are fast fading. Some are just about bare dirt.. I re drilled via no-til about 7 acres and it did come up 2 wks ago. I had planned to put some additional nitrogen out, but with no rain in the forecast, I will sit tight for now. Believe me, it is no fun to see all your hard work dying off for lack of rain.We have a great mast crop and all the deer seem to be in the woods on acorns.
I'm with ya. I think I've had around 0.13" of rain in the last month. Sixty percent chance tomorrow so I'm praying for rain.
I feel ya. Seems here lately the only rain we get is when a hurricane comes through. And the oaks at our farm are crazy producing. More on the ground now because hurricane Matthew knocked a mess of them out of the tree.
I feel for you guys. Weather has just been stagnant this fall. Cold front blows through and temps dip a day or two, then its right back to mid 70's for another 10 days.
Ive gotten fortunate with some rain on two occasions the last month. Without that, my plots would be toasted. Hope rain can find you.
We had record rains and flooding in SE Louisiana and SW Mississippi in early August and then the spigot was just cut off at some point later in the month- we received 0.4" last Thursday, which was the first precip. in 6 weeks!
10 inches rain one day in June and floods. Then 12 weeks of no rain. Then rains again. Exactly why my plots have become slowly mostly perennial with fall over seeding and more variety of drought resistant plants like chicory and alfalfa, and quick growing like reds and grains. Weather just stays extremes across the country any more.
Forecast for the next 10 days here just came out continues to show no rain and above normal temps. I checked NOAA long tern forecast for next 90 days...and not much hope for moisture..In addition to all the food plots I also grassed a bunch of roads around the properties that had been beaten up by spring/summer logging. So in all there is a lot of time, money in fertilizer/seed and sweat out there on the ground. We have had some heavy dews in the morning which seem to be keeping things alive. So I just keep doing my rain dance. Maybe I should learn some new moves!
This SE Bama boy feels your pain. Planted my plots 7 weeks ago and got rain the day I planted and some the next day. Thats been it and no real possibility of rain forecast for at least the next 10 days.I am lucky though many of my plots are smaller, shaded and my ground is fairly low so I am hanging in there. My south neighbor on the other hand has higher terrain, larger plots and less shade and it is ugly. This is what most of his fields look like right now. That green is Nutgrass, not grain

This is what a few of mine look like.



Thank goodness even my larger plots are not like his due to my lower terrain.This last pic shows the difference between shaded and not pretty clearly.
Good news is that extended forecasts are usually wrong. :D
Not making light of your frustrations. We are very dry here as well. We made the drought monitor a couple weeks ago.
Hopefully something changes for ya.
Still no rain in sight here in the piedmont of SC. All of our fields look like Brad B in SE Alabama. Now with cooler temps and our first frost predicted this weekend our potential for any significant growth even with rain goes way down. Our deer are still in the acorns.Interestingly enough some of our brassica plots look somewhat better...go figure that!
I know the feeling, SE north carolina and we had maybe .25 inches in the last 6 weeks. Luckily everything had 1 or 2 weeks to get started and put down roots or I would be hunting a dirt plot.
We haven't had any rain in the SC Lowcountry since the hurricane. Granted, that was 11 inches in one day, but that won't last forever. My no tilled plots look great but the rest of the property sure is dusty.
This drought has taught me about each of my plots.
1. mulch pile plot does not hold water at all, first to shrivel and die off
2. front plot holds water very well and clover is thriving
3. road plot is average for water, but the crown on the the road seems to be suffering more than the edges
4. middle plot is most uneven and the low and middle spot are doing well, with the high spots being bare
5. Back plot has the poorest soil, nutrient wise and doesnt hold water well.
This is my 2nd year on this land, so i am sure yall understand your plots better than I do.
This information will be more useful next year when rotating plots especially nutrient hog brassicas and versatile clovers
Sunday a front came through from the south and brought 0.32" of rain...which will help some, but not a game changer. Most plots are now grazed down to dirt. Now we have wild fires in the nearby mountains of NC with all the smoke blowing down our way...