Soil moisture

Soils drying out in many areas

Soil moisture levels in much of the country dropped dramatically from mid January, with most soils at, or less than, 50% storage at the end of the month. Southland soils remained more moist than usual for the time of year.


Soil moisture deficit in the pasture root zone at the end of January (right) compared with the deficit at the same time last year (centre) and the long-term end of January average (left). The analysis is done for an average soil type where the available water capacity is taken to be 150 mm.