Met Eireann has, this morning, issued a rainfall warning for Leinster with up to 70mm expected overnight and into the weekend.

In its weather warning issued at 10am today it said: “Heavy and persistent rain expected. Rainfall amounts of 40 to 70 mm over 24 hours are likely. “The warning is valid from 3am tonight to 6am Sunday.”

Latest forecasts from Met Eireann say heavy rain in the southeast early tonight will move northwards overnight to affect Leinster, east Ulster and east Munster. The heaviest falls will be in eastern coastal counties with localised flooding.

It says Saturday will also be a wet day over the eastern half of the country with spells of heavy rain and a risk of flooding, especially in coastal counties. It will be brighter further west with some sunny spells and just a few showers.

On Saturday night, forecasts suggest there’ll be further spells of rain in Leinster and Ulster and a continued risk of flooding. It will be mainly dry in Connacht and Munster with clear spells.

On Sunday, Met Eireann says rain will continue over Ulster and will gradually clear northwards as the day goes on. The rest of the country will be mainly dry with sunny spells and perhaps a few isolated showers.

Looking forward to Monday, forecasters are saying that present indications suggest it will continue mainly dry with sunny spells.

The rain over the weekend will be greeted positively by some grassland farmers in the east as the last number of weeks have seen soil moisture deficits on the rise in parts of the country with the east and south east fairing worst. Met Eireann had said in some parts of the south east soils are so dry that growth is starting to become restricted with soil moisture deficits of 40-65mm.

However the heavy rain could not come at a worse time of tillage farmers with standing crops near harvesting, as per longed heavy rain could lead to lodging in places.