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May seemed wetter than it was

Troy Thone, Luverne volunteer weather recorder

One of the odd happenings of weather this spring has been the fact that, by all appearances, it should to be a very wet one on record. 
However, that is all it has been — appearances.
For the second straight month in a row, I completed my tally of precipitation and found to be surprised where the numbers ended up: slightly below normal. 
If one would have polled me at month's end to find out where I thought our rainfall was for April and May, I would have been the first one to say “above normal” — and I would have been completely and utterly wrong. 
Granted, there have been spotty thunderstorms producing heavy rain amounts in localized areas of the county, but overall rainfall has been below normal, but not terribly so. 
For May rainfall amounts came in just shy of 3 inches, which is about a half-inch below normal for the month — definitely not dry, but far from breaking any records either. 
I think one of the contributing factors to the misperception of things being wet is the number of days that occurred with measurable precipitation.
The last four months have produced, on average, between 10 and 11 days per month with measurable precipitation (one-third of each month).  This implies that the heavy rain has, for the most part, stayed away with frequent days of light to moderate rainfall.
It also has a tendency to make the idiom "watching grass grow" obsolete. I think, given the amount of times my lawn has needed mowing, you should literally be able to watch the grass grow.
On the temperature side of things, May was our first month, this year with below-normal average temperatures. 
Temperatures averaged 4 degrees below normal with both high and low temperatures seeing about the same drop in the average. 
In fact, May 2 saw a low temperature at freezing with numerous frost and freeze advisories out for the area during that time.
As we look at June, our statistical wettest month of the year, we should see more of the same with adequate precipitation amounts and increasingly warmer temperatures.
Plus, the June solstice (our day with the greatest amount of daylight) will occur on June 20, the astronomical start to summer.
A blog of daily summary and other interesting weather events for the Luverne area is at Thone can be reached at

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