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More On Georgia's Dry Weather

Wednesday, June 15, 2016   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Jennifer Addington
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More On Georgia's Dry Weather

GA Rainfall for May 2016


Despite a forecast for widespread precipitation from Tropical Storm Colin, parts of Georgia remain very dry. Here's more from UGA's Pam Knox on the the dry conditions. 


May brings drought in north Georgia, heavy rain in Savannah

By Pam Knox UGA


In May 2016, most of Georgia suffered from a lack of rainfall, while record-setting rain fell in Savannah, Georgia. Drought conditions expanded statewide, and severe drought returned to the northwest corner of Georgia by the end of last month.


In the dry areas of the state, pastures, livestock and summer row crops suffered due to this lack of rainfall. Some farmers were waiting for rain to finish planting their dryland crops, and many corn farmers relied on irrigation to keep their crops healthy during the month.

In central Georgia and the coast, where wet conditions occurred, some fungal diseases were observed.


According to National Weather Service stations, the highest monthly total rainfall was 8.99 inches in Savannah, 6.01 inches above normal. The lowest monthly total rainfall was 0.78 inches in Albany, Georgia, 1.91 inches below normal.


Atlanta received 1.25 inches of rainfall, 2.42 inches below normal.

Athens, Georgia, received 2.49 inches, 0.51 inches below normal.

Columbus, Georgia, received 2.51 inches, 0.68 inches below normal.

Macon, Georgia, received 1.96 inches, 0.76 inches below normal.

Augusta, Georgia, received 5.71 inches, 3.06 inches above normal.

Alma, Georgia, received 3.34 inches, 0.87 inches above normal.

Brunswick, Georgia, received 1.68 inches, 0.18 inches below normal.

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What does this mean for landscape irrigation? 

GGIA encourages our members to be familiar with current water rules and to incorporate them into your planning. Setting a customer's irrigation clock? Do yourself and them a favor and make sure they will be watering during permitted periods. By clicking here you can access the full rules as published by Georgia EPD. There are also highlights of the rules below. 


The Georgia Water Stewardship Act went into effect statewide on June 2, 2010.  It allows daily outdoor watering for purposes of planting, growing, managing, or maintaining ground cover, trees, shrubs, or other plants only between the hours of 4 p.m. and 10 a.m. by anyone whose water is supplied by a water system permitted by the Environmental Protection Division. 

The following outdoor water uses also are allowed daily at any time of the day by anyone:

  • Commercial agricultural operations as defined in Code Section 1-3-3;
  • Capture and reuse of cooling system condensate or storm water in compliance with applicable local ordinances and state guidelines;
  • Reuse of gray water in compliance with Code Section 31-3-5.2 and applicable local board of health regulations adopted pursuant thereto;
  • Use of reclaimed waste water by a designated user from a system permitted by the Environmental Protection Division of the department to provide reclaimed waste water;
  • Irrigation of personal food gardens;
  • Irrigation of new and replanted plant, seed, or turf in landscapes, golf courses, or sports turf fields during installation and for a period of 30 days immediately following the date of installation;
  • Drip irrigation or irrigation using soaker hoses;
  • Handwatering with a hose with automatic cutoff or handheld container;
  • Use of water withdrawn from private water wells or surface water by an owner or operator of property if such well or surface water is on said property;
  • Irrigation of horticultural crops held for sale, resale, or installation;
  • Irrigation of athletic fields, golf courses, or public turf grass recreational areas;
  • Installation, maintenance, or calibration of irrigation systems; or

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