The National Weather Service says a moderate drought across southern Ohio is deepening, with rainfall since March 1 running 4 to 6 inches below normal south of Interstate 70.

Far southern Ohio and northern Kentucky are running seven to eight inches below normal for rainfall during that 3½-month period, according to a Weather Service report.

The Weather Service said it's too early to say what effect the rainfall deficit will have on crops, but noted some communities are requesting voluntary restrictions on water use. Regionally, some Greene County communities have banned lawn watering.

The National Climate Predictions Center forecasts near-normal rainfall in the next eight to 14 days.