USDA: Excessive Heat in Southern Plains

August 17, 2011 04:11 PM

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says on the Plains, excessive heat is rapidly building over drought-afflicted southern growing areas, where today's highs will approach or exceed 100°F. "Drier, warmer weather in the northern Plains is allowing spring wheat harvesting to resume," USDA reports.

USDA reports, "In the West, mostly dry weather continues to promote crop development and fieldwork, although monsoon showers linger in the Southwest."

In the Corn Belt, scattered, mostly light showers linger in Iowa and Missouri, USDA reports. Recent rain has mostly bypassed Illinois, where short-term dryness is a concern for reproductive corn, the report continues. "Sunny skies are benefiting corn and soybeans development in the Ohio Valley," USDA explains.

"In the South, varying degrees of drought persist from Texas into the Southeast, where increasingly hot conditions are rapidly offsetting the benefits of recent rain," USDA says. However, USDA says some showers are falling in the northern Delta, while afternoon downpours in peninsular Florida are providing drought relief.

In their outlook, USDA says a pair of cold fronts will produce widespread showers from the Corn Belt to the Atlantic Coast States into the weekend. "Showers will be somewhat lighter in the Southeast, although locally heavy downpours are expected in peninsular Florida and the Northeast," USDA adds. A brief spell of warm, sunny conditions on the northern Plains will gave way to notably cooler weather by week’s end, USDA says. "Meanwhile, monsoon moisture will take a circuitous route out of the Southwest, resulting in showers and thunderstorms from the Four Corners into the central Plains, then southeastward into the Delta," USDA says. Rain will bypass most of the southern Plains, where a compact ridge of high pressure will maintain sunny, excessively hot weather, USDA continues. "Seasonably dry weather is expected from the central and northern Rockies to the Pacific Coast," USDA reports.


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