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USDA: Excessive Rain and Cool Conditions Slow Canadian Crop Development

June 13, 2013
By: Julianne Johnston, Pro Farmer Digital Managing Editor

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility has issued the following monthly global weather highlights:

  • UNITED STATES: During May, periods of heavy rain hampered fieldwork and renewed flooding across the northern Plains and the Midwest, except for a brief mid-month stretch when producers achieved a torrid corn planting pace. By the end of the month, substantial soybean acreage had not yet been planted in the western and central Corn Belt. Cool, wet conditions also hampered spring wheat planting, especially in North Dakota. May rain from South Dakota to Texas largely fell too late to assist the drought- and freeze-ravaged winter wheat crop. As drought entered a third year on the southern High Plains, serious concerns existed with respect to the health of rangeland, pastures, and emerging summer crops. Drought also led to unusually poor rangeland and pasture conditions in the Southwest. Parts of the West also continued to suffer from the combined effects of sub-par spring runoff and below-normal reservoir storage. Elsewhere, abundant rain fell across much of the South and East, although there were enough breaks in the weather for previously delayed planting activities to advance.

  • CANADA: In May, Prairie spring grain and oilseed planting made slow progress as showers maintained adequate to locally excessive levels of moisture. Conditions were mostly favorable for winter wheat, emerging summer crops, and pastures in Ontario, but cool weather, including an unseasonably late freeze, slowed vegetative growth and may have burned back tender vegetation.

  • SOUTH AMERICA: During May, a drying trend supported summer grain, oilseed, and cotton harvesting throughout Argentina’s main farming areas. In Brazil, periods of unseasonably heavy rain were untimely for sugarcane harvesting and maturation of coffee. However, the rain maintained mostly favorable levels of moisture for secondary (safrinha) corn and cotton.

  • EUROPE: Wetter-than-normal weather across much of Europe during May hampered fieldwork but boosted soil moisture for heading to filling winter crops and emerging to vegetative summer crops. Locally excessive rainfall caused flooding from Germany and Poland into northern Italy. In particular, corn planting in northern Italy and Croatia has been hampered by a very wet spring, with recent rain exacerbating fieldwork delays. Meanwhile, producers in England were able to sow spring grains and oilseeds in lieu of unplanted winter crops following a wet autumn.

  • FSU-WESTERN: Unseasonably warm, mostly drier-than-normal weather reduced prospects for winter wheat in southern portions of Russia and Ukraine. However, spotty, locally heavy showers and thunderstorms provided localized soil moisture, resulting in highly variable winter wheat crop conditions. Elsewhere, near- to above-normal rainfall maintained abundant soil moisture for grains and oilseeds and promoted summer crop establishment.

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    RELATED TOPICS: Corn, Weather, Soybeans, Wheat, Cotton, USDA

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