Champaign, Ill. – Soil temperatures have fallen across the state as October brought cooler weather, according to Jennie Atkins, Water and Atmospheric Resources Monitoring (WARM) program manager at the Illinois State Water Survey.
Soil temperatures at 4 inches under sod averaged 57 degrees on Oct. 16, 2 degrees below the long-term average for mid-October. Temperatures have been steadily falling throughout the month, dropping 18 degrees since Oct. 1. Daily highs have ranged from the mid 50s to low 60s.
Temperatures were slightly cooler under bare soil with a statewide average of 53 degrees on Oct. 16, a decline of 24 degrees from the beginning of the month. Daily lows were in the 40s and low 50s.
Soil moisture, on average, has changed little the first half of October, increasing only 2 percent at depths of 2 inches between Oct. 1 and Oct. 16. However the average hides the larger changes seen in the various regions. Moisture levels declined in northern and central Illinois from 8 percent to 17 percent while the south saw an increase of 44 percent due to increased rains in the region. Similar patterns occurred at depths of 4 to 20 inches.
The Illinois State Water Survey’s WARM program collects hourly and daily weather and soil information at 19 stations across the state. Daily and monthly summaries can be found at the WARM website and in the Illinois Water and Climate Summary.
For more information, contact: Jennie Atkins, (217) 333-4966, firstname.lastname@example.org