USDA: Warm, Dry Conditions to Persist in the Corn Belt

June 25, 2012 03:11 AM

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says on the Plains, heat and dryness sustain rapid drydown and harvesting of hard red winter wheat in southern production areas, as well as advanced development of sorghum and other summer row crops. "A Red Flag warning is in effect for the central High Plains," USDA reports.

In the West, USDA reports sunny skies are advancing development of cotton, rice, and other irrigated summer crops in California and Arizona. "However, a Red Flag warning remains in effect for much of the Intermountain West, indicating a high potential for the development and spread of wild fires," according to USDA.

In the Corn Belt, USDA says warm, dry weather maintains concern for potential additional stress on vegetative to reproductive corn and soybeans in the central Mississippi and Ohio Valleys.

In the South, USDA explains Tropical Storm Debbie is generating locally heavy rain and some severe weather over Florida and southern Georgia as it sits nearly stationary less than 100 miles south of the south of the Florida Panhandle.

In its outlook, USDA says Tropical Storm Debbie is currently forecast to drift slowly northward toward the coast of Florida over the next few days, generating locally heavy rain (5-10 inches or more) over central Florida and nearby locations in Georgia and South Carolina. "However, weak steering currents are making the forecast for landfall difficult, and tropical storm warnings are in effect as far west as the Alabama border," according to USDA. Meanwhile, USDA reports interior farming areas of the Southeast will remain dry, as will much of the nation’s mid-section, with increasingly warmer conditions developing across the Corn Belt as the week progresses. "The West is forecast to remain mostly dry over the next few days, although patchy rain will benefit small grains and other crops in the Northwest," USDA explains.


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