Crop Stress High In Central and Southern Plains - Minimal in the Corn Belt

July 30, 2008 07:00 PM Editors

In the Corn Belt, showers linger in the Ohio Valley, but dry weather prevails elsewhere. Above-normal temperatures continue to promote rapid summer crop growth. To date, midwestern corn and soybeans have experienced minimal heat stress, and today's highs are again expected to remain below 95 degrees F. USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility reported Thursday.  Elsewhere in the U.S.:

  • In the West, hot weather is expanding across the region, although below-normal temperatures linger along and near the Pacific Coast. Dry weather favors fieldwork, including Northwestern small grain harvesting.
  • On the Plains, severe thunderstorms are sweeping through the Dakotas. Nevertheless, small grain harvest activities continue on the northern Plains with only minor delays. On the central and southern Plains, hot, dry weather is stressing rain-fed summer crops in areas with soil moisture shortages.
  • In the South, shower and thunderstorm activity is increasing across much of the region, providing muchneeded moisture for pastures and immature summer crops.

See map of all U.S. weather activity.

Near-term Outlook: Unsettled weather over the eastern U.S. will contrast with dry conditions west of the Mississippi. A pair of weak cool fronts will trigger occasional showers and thunderstorms from the central Corn Belt eastward into the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast. Farther south, a stalled frontal boundary coupled with an influx of very humid, unstable air will produce locally heavy showers across the central and eastern Gulf Coast States. Meanwhile, a building ridge of high pressure in the Nation's mid-section will lead to dry, increasingly hot weather over the Great Plains and western Corn Belt; daytime highs will routinely eclipse 100 degrees F across the central Plains into early next week. Out west, dry weather will prevail, with cooler conditions along Pacific Coast contrasting with above-normal temperatures in the Great Basin.

Extended Outlook: The NWS 6- to 10-day outlook for August 5-9 calls for above-normal temperatures from the central and southern Plains to the Mid-Atlantic, while cooler-than-normal conditions prevail in the Northwest, New England, and Florida. Above-normal rainfall is expected in New England, the western Corn Belt, and the central and northern Plains. In contrast, drier-than-normal conditions are anticipated in the Great Basin and across interior portions of the South.

Click here to view AgWeb's Enhanced Weather Coverage.


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