USDA: No Relief for Crops, Livestock in Southern Plains

August 19, 2011 03:14 AM

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says on the Plains, excessive heat and extreme drought continue to impact crops, pastures, and livestock across southern growing areas, where rain is urgently needed for winter wheat planting. "Today's highs are expected to easily surpass 100°F across much of Texas, Oklahoma, and southern Kansas," USDA notes. In contrast, cool, mostly dry weather on the northern Plains is promoting spring wheat harvesting, USDA says.

"In the West, sunny skies are accelerating crop development and fieldwork, although monsoon showers have expanded across the Four Corners Region," USDA reports.

In the Corn Belt, showers and thunderstorms this morning in Illinois and Missouri are providing moisture for reproductive to filling summer crops, USDA says. "Elsewhere, generally sunny skies and seasonable temperatures favor corn and soybean development," USDA adds.

In the South, varying degrees of drought persist from Texas into the Southeast, with increasingly hot conditions rapidly offsetting the benefits of last week's rain, USDA explains. "However, showers continue to ease drought in the northern Delta and southern Florida," USDA adds.

USDA's Outlook says a series of weak disturbances will generate occasional showers and thunderstorms from the central Plains and Corn Belt eastward into the central and northern Atlantic Coast States. "Farther south, showers across the Delta and interior Southeast will contrast with mostly dry weather on the southern Coastal Plain," USDA says. It continues, hot, dry conditions will persist across the southern Great Plains, with increasingly warm, showery weather overspreading the northern Plains by early next week. "Seasonal showers and thunderstorms will persist in peninsular Florida and the Four Corners Region, while sunny skies prevail across the remainder of the western U.S.," USDA reports.


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