USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says on the Plains, mostly dry weather accompanies below-normal temperatures. "Winter grains across both the northern and southern Plains are benefiting from recent topsoil moisture improvements, but recent storms have bypassed the central High Plains," USDA explains. In addition, subsoil moisture shortages remain a concern throughout the nation's mid-section, USDA continues.
In the West, USDA says warm weather continues to expand across the Pacific Coast states, while cold conditions cover the southern Rockies. "Continuing a troubling trend that began in early 2013, most areas from the Rockies westward are experiencing dry weather," USDA reports.
In the Corn Belt, USDA says cold, breezy weather prevails in the wake of a cold front's passage. "This morning's temperatures fell below 0°F in parts of the eastern Dakotas and northern and central Minnesota," USDA adds.
In the South, USDA explains showers linger across Florida's peninsula, where widespread, 1- to 2-inch rainfall totals have provided drought relief and eased irrigation demands. "Elsewhere, cool, dry weather prevails," USDA adds. Some lowland flooding persists in the central Gulf Coast region, including along the Pearl River in southern Mississippi, according to USDA.
In its outlook USDA says a weekend storm will threaten portions of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern states with snow, while rain and snow showers will spread inland from the Pacific Northwest to the northern High Plains. "Sharply colder air will trail the Eastern storm, with freezes possible during the weekend as far south as the central portion of Florida’s peninsula," USDA explains. In contrast, USDA reports weekend temperatures will rebound to above-normal levels across the nation’s mid-section. "Early next week, a new storm will take aim across the eastern half of the U.S., with snow expected in parts of the Midwest and rain in the South and East," USDA says. Meanwhile, bitterly cold air will overspread the northern Plains and the upper Midwest, according to USDA. "In the West, precipitation will spread farther south into California and the Great Basin," USDA concludes.