Weather: New Zealand set for dry March, escalating drought woes

New Zealand farmers and firefighters face more agony as the cold, dry hands of drought strangle the country.

High pressure systems in the Tasman Sea are "killing off our rainmakers", creating tinder-dry conditions that fuel the fires breaking out across the country.

"Meteorological drought conditions are now occurring in the Tasman, Buller, and Far North Districts," NIWA says on Twitter.

And now weather experts are warning that there's worse to come in March.

Before the weekend's rain, Hamilton and Rotorua had both received zero rainfall this month, while Auckland suffered on 2mm and Kaitaia made do with six.

Weather Watch says this looks set to continue, with a lot of dry high pressure dominating from the Tasman Sea area.

"Long-range data shows some parts of New Zealand, perhaps our driest regions, will have the lowest rainfall totals in the next two weeks ahead, some will have 0 to just 10mm in the next 14 days," head forecaster Philip Duncan.

"For now most places actually look drier than normal over the next couple of weeks, with just the odd cold front for the South Island and a few showers here and there in the North Island."

Weather Watch says the best bet for rain is hoping for a break in the highs in mid-March, when a southerly and tropical low could pull down some rain and give some wet relief to New Zealand.