Ag Weather Forum

Improved Prairies Rain Chance

Joel Burgio
By  Joel Burgio , DTN Senior Ag Meteorologist
Forecast Prairies rainfall over the next two weeks offers light to moderate totals east, and moderate to heavy west. (DTN Frontier Weather graphic)

Across the Canadian Prairies, rain and some snow recently have improved soil moisture. However, most of the region is still dry with less than half the normal spring precipitation recorded. In addition, below-normal temperatures have been unfavorable for seeding. The weather patterns show some hints of increasing rainfall and warmer temperatures. However, there are still questions about where this pattern is heading longer range.

The forecast for the next two weeks still features mostly below-normal rainfall. The best chance for increased precipitation is in the 10- to 15-day time frame. Rainfall totals could reach 1.0 to 1.5 inches (25 to 40 millimeters) through Saskatchewan and Manitoba, and 1.0 to 2.0 inches (25 to 50 mm) and locally heavier in Alberta. This amount of rainfall in the driest areas of the central and southeast Prairies would provide for more favorable conditions for planting and early development of crops; however, moisture would still be about .25 to .50 inch (6 to 12 mm) below normal. The region is going to need more rain and higher coverage to help re-supply soil moisture levels for crops, especially because of the dry scenario so far in 2019.

Temperatures across the region feature a warming trend beginning in western areas and gradually spreading eastward through the next ten days. This will favor soil warming and seeding progress. The end of May through early June temperature pattern should continue with a warmer trend, along with better chances for rainfall. Such a trend would also favor additional seeding progress.

Joel Burgio can be reached at



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