Any farmer can tell you that it has been unseasonably dry this summer on the East End. Gardeners, too, have had to water daily, and, unless irrigated, lawns were August-brown by the Fourth of July. In the woods and brushy places, the ground crackles underfoot; it’s been weeks since the last sustained soaking.
Less than two inches of rain was recorded in June, and the temperature was about two degrees above normal. The total rainfall this month has been about on par with past Julys but came in light sprinkles that quickly evaporated in above-average heat — almost four degrees higher than the norm.
Most of New York State, including Long Island, is rated one level below “high” for wildfire risk. This means sparks from a backyard fire pit or hot coals dumped at the edge of a property could lead to problems. Enjoy the outdoors, but be very careful around fire.