The following content was provided by meteorologist Gail Martell of MartellCropProjections.com:
Cold Damp Weather Dominates Midwest
Hard freezes have developed in the Upper Midwest the past two nights ending the growing season for corn and soybeans in the Upper Midwest. A hard freeze is coming to Illinois, Indiana and Ohio later this week, farms that previously had avoided freezing temperatures. Producers may welcome a killing freeze as this would hasten drying of mature corn while also helping to defoliate soybeans. A season-ending freeze may even extend into the Mid-South in Kentucky, Tennessee and northeast Arkansas.
Prolonged fall warmth has allowed Northern Midwest corn and soybeans to mature safely. Crop planted very late needed the extra heat units. Yield estimates may inch higher in the USDA November crop production report, as the corn and soybean potential was optimized by a prolonged, warm fall growing period.
Variable Rains Last Week, Mostly Modest
Weekend Midwest weather was cloudy, damp and cold with sporadic showers on the weekend. Fall has arrived. While locally heavy showers developed in the Midwest, the average precipitation was .20 inch, permitting the harvest to advance on the majority of corn and soybean farms.
The subsoil is still very dry from severe drought the past 3 months. Drought is a major concern in much of Iowa, Illinois, southern Minnesota, Wisconsin and Missouri. It would take at least 3 inches but up to 7 inches on some farms to completely replenish ground moisture.
Much-above-normal rainfall has developed in Kansas, promoting very favorable planting conditions. Indeed the U.S. leading winter wheat state is experiencing the best field moisture in several years. Oklahoma and Texas also have received generous rainfall increasing topsoil moisture for planting, the United States second and third largest bread wheat states.
Cold Persisting, Few Showers
A deep cold trough of low pressure is lumbering eastward across the Midwest. Cold damp weather with scattered, locally heavy rains, would continue the next few days as low pressure dominates. Periods of sunshine would alternate with low clouds and sporadic showers.
Clearing would gradually develop west of the Mississippi River later this week as low pressure ambles through the Great Lakes and Eastern Midwest. The 5-day forecast calls for locally heavy rainfall in portions of the Midwest, but not throughout the grain belt.
The 6-10 day forecast continues with the same cold pattern. Rains would favor the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes states but avoid the Central Great Plains and central Midwest.