Martell: Corn and Soybean Development Continues to Lag

June 17, 2013 05:18 AM

The following content was provided by meteorologist Gail Martell of 

Northern Midwest Wetness, Stunted Development

Worries over U.S. corn and soybeans continue with excessively wet field conditions and insufficient heat units to drive growth and development. Temperatures last week were warmer, close to normal, though scattered heavy rains affected nearly half of the grain belt. The worst wetness is in Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin, the three states receiving more unwanted rainfall last week. A little more than half of corn made the good-excellent grade in the June 9th report from USDA in the three "super-wet" states.

Observed Rainfall Past 7 Days

All together 35% of U.S. corn is jeopardy from severe planting delays, stunted growth and wet field conditions.

Soybeans planted after corn may have a better chance at recovering and making a decent yield. While the national conditions currently are mediocre , favorable growing conditions could improve the outlook. August is the key month for pod filling, when the seed size is heavily determined. Producers nonetheless are worried about soybean yields due to severe planting delays and stunted growth.

United States corn ratings are expected to slightly improve in the June 16th report, because of strong Midwest warming and increased sunshine last week. USDA will release its first soybean crop condition ratings this afternoon.

Wheat Threat from Kansas Heat Wave

Planting conditions improved sharply in North Dakota last week, turning warmer and drier, encouraging spring wheat seeding. Only 77% of wheat was planted up to June 9th the slowest pace on record. Strong planting progress is anticipated is anticipated perhaps a 15% gain. North Dakota is the second largest spring wheat state behind Kansas.

Hot dry air from the Southwest Desert expanded into the Great Plains last week, stressing ripening wheat and shrinking kernel weights. Hottest temperatures occurred in Kansas, upper 90s- 104 F (37 - 40 C) in a heat wave last week. Last week, USDA projected a larger hard red winter wheat harvest, up 2% from the May estimate. Extreme heat may have reclaimed a portion of the wheat yield from kernel-shriveling. Not only was Kansas very hot but also Oklahoma, Colorado and northern Texas.

Forecast Update

A moist air stream from tropical Mexico is causing strong thunderstorms this morning in the southern Great Plains. Showers would spread east across the mid- Mississippi Valley on into the South the next couple of days. Showers may develop as far north as Nebraska from this tropical air stream. Most of the Midwest would enjoy warm, sunny and dry weather the next 3 days.

US 7 Day Temperature Outlook

A powerful low pressure system in the Western United States is expected to push eastward Wednesday evening -- Friday introducing more instability and showers into the Northern quarter of the United States. This storm is venting most of its energy in the Pacific Northwest and Northern Rocky Mountains, though ripples of low pressure would travel eastward into North Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin causing showers later this week.

The 7-day rainfall outlook reflects the southern United States wetness from the Mexico monsoon, and northern wetness from a large Canadian storm. In between, the Midwest would be mostly dry expecting less than .50 inch of rainfall this week. Normal moisture is near one inc. Near to above normal temperatures are anticipated in the Midwest along with sunny days. This would promote stronger growth and development. At the same time, unfavorable heat would persist on the High Plains, threatening ripening wheat.

7 Day Rainfall Forecast


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