The Bureau of Meteorology defines precipitation as: ‘Any or all of the forms of water, whether liquid (e.g. rain, drizzle) or solid (e.g. hail, snow), that fall from a cloud or group of clouds and reach the ground.’ In other words, precipitation
is any atmospheric moisture that falls to the ground through the action of gravity.
It is important to consider the difference between precipitation and relative humidity (how much water vapour the air holds), which affects how light is refracted, how quickly plants respire and how rapidly the soil dries out (evaporation).
On regenerative farms, annual precipitation is important. But farmers also consider dew, which can provide a surprising amount of moisture to plants and soil.
Ultimately regenerative farmers aim to store water in the soil, by creating soils with structures and depth of organic matter that enable them to maintain water rather than releasing it into the air as vapour (evaporation), and keeping these soils covered with living plants or mulch.