USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says in the Corn Belt, cool, dry weather across the majority of the region favors late-season fieldwork. However, USDA says rain showers associated with a developing storm are spreading across the southwestern Corn Belt, including the middle Mississippi and lower Missouri Valleys.
In the West, USDA says isolated showers are confined to western sections of Washington and Oregon. "Elsewhere, dry, unusually warm weather favors fieldwork, including cotton harvesting in Arizona and California," USDA explains.
On the Plains, USDA reports cool conditions linger across eastern portions of Kansas, Nebraska and the Dakotas. "Meanwhile, mild weather is returning to the High Plains, where today's high temperatures will approach 70°F as far north as Montana," USDA explains. Despite the late-season warmth, additional moisture is still needed in many areas to promote further winter wheat development, according to USDA.
In the South, USDA says a few rain showers are overspreading the northwestern fringe of the region, including northern Arkansas. "Elsewhere, dry weather is promoting autumn fieldwork, including winter wheat planting and cotton, peanut and soybean harvesting," USDA explains. Producers in the southern Mid-Atlantic states continue to assess the impacts of Hurricane Sandy's wind and rain on unharvested crops, USDA reports.
In its outlook, USDA says storm currently crossing the middle Mississippi Valley will intensify near the Mid-Atlantic coast on Tuesday night and Wednesday. "By Thursday, a powerful 'nor’easter' will be located near the New England coast," USDA elaborates. Potential storm effects along the northern Atlantic Coast will include 1 to 3 inches of rain, high winds and pounding surf, according to USDA. "Fragile ocean-front areas affected by Hurricane Sandy will be especially vulnerable to additional damage," USDA adds. Meanwhile, USDA reports a weather pattern change will get underway in the West. "By Thursday, notably cooler air will arrive in the Pacific Coast states and the northern High Plains," USDA explains. During the weekend, USDA reports below-normal temperatures will prevail from the Pacific Coast to the Plains, while warmer-than-normal weather will overspread the East. "Widespread precipitation, including some heavy snow, will precede and accompany the Western surge of cold air," USDA explains.