USDA: Warmth to Expand Across the Nation

April 8, 2014 03:37 AM
 

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says on the Plains, dry weather prevails in the wake of recent shower activity. Warmth is returning to the northern half of the High Plains, but chilly conditions persist elsewhere in the nation’s mid-section. "For the week ending April 6, further declines in winter wheat condition were noted in states such as Texas (61% very poor to poor), Oklahoma (48%), and Kansas (27%)," USDA details.

In the West, USDA reports dry weather accompanies a return to record-breaking warmth. "Today’s high temperatures will approach 90°F as far north as California’s Central Valley," USDA elaborates. The water content of the high-elevation Sierra Nevada snowpack has peaked at 10 inches, about 35% of average, according to USDA.

In the Corn Belt, USDA says cool, breezy weather prevails. "In addition, widely scattered rain showers dot the southern and eastern Corn Belt," USDA adds. In general, Midwestern fieldwork is behind schedule; in Iowa, for example, only 7% of the oats were planted by April 6, compared to 9% last year and the five-year average of 29%, USDA elaborates.

In the South, USDA explains showers linger across the southern Atlantic region and are returning to the lower Mississippi Valley. "Wet soils continue to limit fieldwork in parts of the South," USDA adds. On April 6, for example, topsoil moisture was rated more than half surplus in several states, including Mississippi (71% surplus) and Louisiana (51%), according to USDA.

In its outlook, USDA says for the remainder of today, heavy showers will linger across Florida’s peninsula, where additional rainfall could locally exceed an inch. "During the mid- to late-week period, the weather will be characterized by a series of relatively weak systems," USDA reports. However, the storms will bypass areas from California to Texas, where very warm, dry weather will prevail, according to USDA. At the same time, warmth will expand from the western U.S. to encompass the remainder of the nation, USDA details.


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