USDA: Heat Stressing European Corn

August 28, 2013 05:22 AM



USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility has provided the following weekly weather/crop highlights:

  • EUROPE: Early week heat and persistent dryness stressed corn and sunflowers in southeastern Europe, while showers maintained adequate soil moisture for filling summer crops across central and northern growing areas. Temperatures topped 30°C (as high as 36°C) in the Balkans, which coupled with a much drier-than-normal summer further reduced prospects for filling corn and sunflowers. However, much-needed heat relief arrived during the latter half of the week, with daytime highs dropping into the 20s (degrees C). Hot weather (30-34°C) also lowered yield prospects for filling corn in southwestern France. Meanwhile, widespread showers (2-22 mm) benefited filling summer crops across much of central and northern Europe. Despite the rain, there were enough days suitable for fieldwork to allow small grain harvesting to proceed with minimal delay. Elsewhere, 10 to 45 mm of rain improved soil moisture for upcoming winter wheat planting in northern Italy, while harvesting and other seasonal fieldwork continued in Spain.

  • FSU-WESTERN: Late-summer heat and dryness intensified across southern growing areas, while showers maintained favorable prospects for filling summer crops elsewhere. Temperatures exceeded 30°C (locally as high as 34°C) across the southern half of the region, which coupled with a drier-than-normal summer stressed filling summer crops from southern Ukraine into Russia’s Southern District. However, the dry conditions facilitated a rapid pace of early winter wheat planting. Meanwhile, scattered showers and thunderstorms (2-30 mm) maintained favorable summer crop prospects in western Ukraine, Belarus, and northern and central Russia.

  • FSU-EASTERN: Mostly sunny skies and near-normal temperatures favored spring wheat development in the north and cotton maturation in the south. After an exceptionally wet July and early August, mostly dry weather was welcomed for filling spring wheat in northern Kazakhstan and Russia’s Siberia District. However, localized dryness continued to trim spring wheat prospects in the southern Urals District, where season-to-date rainfall (since May 1) has tallied less than 50 percent of normal. Farther south, sunny skies and near-normal temperatures favored cotton maturation development from Turkmenistan into Kyrgyzstan.

  • MIDDLE EAST: Seasonably dry weather promoted fieldwork, although some showers were reported in portions of Turkey. Typical August agricultural activity in the Middle East includes late winter wheat harvesting as well as sorghum, corn, rice, and cotton maturation and harvesting. However, unseasonable showers (2-20 mm) in southern and western Turkey interrupted fieldwork but provided supplemental moisture to summer crops.

  • SOUTH ASIA: Monsoon showers eased in northern India as cotton and rice began to mature. Drier weather also prevailed in eastern portions of Uttar Pradesh and much of Bihar. The persistent dryness in Bihar during the season has reduced rice prospects locally, although favorable rainfall throughout the season - including the current period - in West Bengal and Orissa has maintained good rice prospects in these areas. Meanwhile, showers remained heavy (100-225 mm) in soybean areas of Madhya Pradesh, causing additional field flooding and overall saturated conditions. For cotton and groundnuts in Gujarat and Maharashtra, however, somewhat drier weather eased excessive wetness. Elsewhere in the region, mostly dry weather in Pakistan favored maturing rice and cotton, while showers (50-100 mm) in Bangladesh benefited the summer (aman) rice crop.

  • EAST ASIA: Typhoon Trami made landfall in southeastern China during the middle part of the week. Trami intensified prior to making landfall in Fujian with maximum sustained winds of 75 knots. Damage to crops was likely localized to coastal areas of China and across northern Taiwan. As the remnants of Trami moved inland, the storm’s abundant moisture interacted with the monsoon front positioned across southwestern China and the western Yangtze Valley. As a result, heavy showers (50-200 mm) occurred in rice and cotton areas that hadn’t received appreciable rain in over 2 months. The rainfall provided a much-needed boost to moisture supplies and helped stabilize rice prospects from further deterioration but likely came too late to benefit cotton in the area. Meanwhile farther north, drier weather prevailed on the North China Plain and in northeastern China as Trami consolidated moisture in southern China. The drier conditions eased prolonged wetness for crops in Hebei and Shandong as well as more recent wetness in Jilin and parts of Liaoning. Additionally, drier weather provided some relief from persistent flooding in northern North Korea, while seasonable rainfall boosted moisture supplies for rice in South Korea and Japan; more rainfall would be welcomed, however, to ease lingering seasonal moisture deficits in these areas.

  • SOUTHEAST ASIA: Rainfall was generally widespread in Thailand, with upwards of 120 mm occurring in northern rice areas. However, pockets of drier weather prevailed in key rice areas of the northeast and in central portions of the Chao Phraya River Basin. In Vietnam, much-above-normal rainfall continued in the Red River Delta, where upwards of 175 mm pushed totals since July 1 to over 700 mm. Meanwhile in the Philippines, monsoon showers enhanced by Tropical Cyclone Trami off the northeastern coast caused extensive flooding in western Luzon, with as much as 775 mm of rain reported for the week. In fact, western rice areas of Luzon completely erased the 700 mm seasonal (since May 1) rainfall deficit. Elsewhere in the region, dry weather across oil palm areas of Indonesia benefited harvesting, while showers (25-100 mm) maintained favorable soil moisture for Malaysian oil palm.

  • AUSTRALIA: In Western Australia, a combination of warm, sunny weather and adequate moisture supplies continued to favor winter grain and oilseed development. Farther east, widespread showers (5-25 mm or more) and seasonably mild weather maintained good to excellent yield prospects for wheat, barley, and canola in South Australia, Victoria, and southern New South Wales. In contrast, dry weather in northern New South Wales and southern Queensland continued a drying trend that began in late July. Unseasonably cool weather (temperatures averaging 1 to 2°C below normal) helped reduce net evaporative losses, however, mid-week minimum temperatures dipped below freezing in some locations (as low as -4°C between Aug 20-22), increasing the potential for local freeze damage to the most advanced winter crops.

  • ARGENTINA: Warm, sunny weather during the early part of the week gave way to a late-week cooling trend, which slowed growth of emerging to vegetative winter grains. Daytime highs ranged from the lower and middle 20s (degrees C) in La Pampa and Buenos Aires to the middle and upper 30s in far northern farming areas (Salta and Formosa) during the first part of the week. However, temperatures plummeted upon the arrival a quick-moving cold front, with daytime highs falling into the low teens in the traditionally warmer northern production areas. Nighttime lows fell below -5°C in the coldest parts of La Pampa and Buenos Aires as patchy frost returned to parts of the north. Little to no rain accompanied the frontal passage, though light showers (2-12 mm) kept topsoils moist in the southern wheat belt of Buenos Aires. Light rain (less than 25 mm) also developed in the northeast east of the main cotton and wheat areas (Corrientes and Misiones), otherwise dry weather prevailed.

  • BRAZIL: Heavy rain returned to Rio Grande do Sul late in the week, renewing concerns for potential impacts of unseasonable wetness on filling to maturing winter wheat. Rainfall totaled 25 to 100 mm over a 2-day period, with heaviest amounts concentrated in eastern production areas. A cold front brought rain and also dropped minimum temperatures below 5°C, though no freeze was recorded. Meanwhile, drier, seasonably warmer conditions prevailed to the north as the front stalled over Rio Grande do Sul; in Sao Paulo and Minas Gerais, the drier conditions favored harvesting of sugarcane and coffee after a period of light showers (5-25 mm) early in the week. Daytime highs generally ranged from the upper 20s and lower 30s (degrees C) in the southeastern coffee belt to the upper 30s in Mato Grosso and Tocantins, resulting in weekly temperatures averaging 1 to 3°C above normal. Elsewhere, seasonal rain intensified along the northeastern coast, with amounts totaling 10 to more than 50 mm as far south as Rio de Janeiro, increasing moisture for sugarcane, cocoa, but likely hampering coffee harvests.

  • MEXICO: Seasonal showers maintained generally favorable levels of moisture for rain-fed summer crops, while helping to boost national reservoir levels. Rainfall totaled 10 to 50 mm across the southern plateau corn belt (Jalisco to Puebla), with locally heavier amounts (up to 100 mm). Similar amounts were recorded along the southern Pacific Coast. Locally heavy showers (50-200 mm) developed from southern Veracruz and northern Oaxaca eastward through the Yucatan Peninsula, possibly resulting in localized flooding. Daytime highs reached the lower and middle 30s (degrees C) throughout the southeast, with somewhat cooler weather (highs in the middle and upper 20s) on the southern plateau. Monsoon showers continued in the northwest (Nayarit to Sonora) though rainfall amounts tapered off from the previous week in the vicinity of northern Sinaloa. Showers (5-25 mm) also diminished from the previous week in the northeast, where daytime highs in the upper 30s maintained high moisture requirements for crops and livestock.

  • CANADIAN PRAIRIES: Above-normal temperatures fostered rapid late-season development of filling to maturing spring grains and oilseeds. Weekly temperatures averaged 2 to 3°C above normal across Saskatchewan and Manitoba, with daytime highs reaching the lower 30s (degrees C) on several days. Weekly average temperatures were up to 2°C above normal in Alberta, with highs ranging from the lower 30s in the south to the middle 20s in the Peace River Valley. Nighttime lows fell below 5°C in most of Alberta and in parts of Manitoba; temperatures briefly fell below freezing in outlying agricultural districts of central Alberta, but widespread damage was not suspected. Mostly dry weather aided early spring crop harvesting, although showers (locally in excess of 10 mm) were scattered across Manitoba and northern agricultural districts in Alberta and Saskatchewan.

  • SOUTHEASTERN CANADA: Warm, mostly dry weather dominated Ontario, spurring late-season growth of summer crops and pastures while aiding seasonal fieldwork. Weekly temperatures averaged up to 2°C above normal, with daytime highs reaching 30°C in some locations. Little to no rain fell in the main southwestern farming areas, aiding the final stages of small grain harvesting. In contrast, light to moderate showers (5-35 mm) developed in Quebec and Ontario’s eastern production areas, keeping immature summer crops and pastures well watered but temporarily hampering fieldwork. Weekly temperatures in these eastern production areas averaged 1 to 2°C above normal, with daytime highs reaching the upper 20s and lower 30s (degrees C) before the onset of showers during the latter half of the week.


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