USDA: Snow Falling in Iowa and South Dakota

October 22, 2013 03:44 AM

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says in the Corn Belt, some light snow is falling across the upper Midwest, especially in parts of Iowa and South Dakota. However, the majority of the Corn Belt is experiencing cold, dry weather, allowing harvest activities to continue, USDA reports. Freeze warnings are in effect early today as far south as northern sections of Illinois and Indiana, according to USDA.

In the West, USDA explains mild, dry weather is promoting fieldwork, including cotton harvesting in California (50% complete on Oct. 20) and Arizona (26%). "Late-season warmth also favors Northwestern winter wheat development," USDA adds.

On the Plains, USDA says mostly dry weather favors late-season winter wheat planting and summer crop harvesting. "Winter wheat is off to a good start, with 65% of the nation’s crop rated in good to excellent condition on Oct. 20," USDA reports.

In the South, USDA explains showers in advance of a cold front are causing some temporary harvest disruptions. "In the Southeast, cotton harvest progress on Oct. 20 ranged from 10% in Virginia and South Carolina to 19% in Alabama. On the same date, there was highly variable cotton harvest progress in the Delta, ranging from 8% in Tennessee to 82% in Louisiana," USDA continues.

In its outlook, USDA says a cold front sweeping through the East will move offshore by midweek. "A wave of low pressure along the front will result in a chilly rain on Oct. 23 in parts of the Northeast," USDA reports. Meanwhile, snow showers will become more numerous downwind of the Great Lakes, USDA says. "During the second half of the week, freezes can be expected as far south as the middle Mississippi Valley and the interior Southeast," USDA details. In contrast, late-season warmth will prevail in the West. By week’s end, warmth will overspread the High Plains, USDA continues.

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