USDA: Winter Wheat Continues to Thrive, Though Some Dryness Exists

April 24, 2012 03:25 AM

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says on the Plains, record-setting warmth prevails. "Later today, high temperatures of 90°F or greater can be expected in much of the High Plains region," USDA adds. Most of the hard red winter wheat crop continues to thrive, although pockets of unfavorable dryness exist on the High Plains, it continues.

In the West, USDA says cooler air is arriving along the Pacific Coast, but warm, dry weather continues across the remainder of the region. "In California and the Northwest, previously delayed fieldwork is advancing," USDA adds. By April 22, only 30% of California's cotton had been planted, compared to the five-year average of 68%, according to USDA.

In the Corn Belt, chilly conditions across the Ohio Valley and the lower Great Lakes region contrast with warm weather west of the Mississippi River, USDA explains. "By April 22, at least half of the corn had already been planted in Illinois (59%) and Missouri (50%), while corn emergence had reached 21% in both states," USDA reports.

In the South, USDA says cool weather lingers in the wake of a departing storm. "Across the lower Southeast, pastures, winter grains and emerged summer crops are benefiting from recent soil moisture improvements," USDA adds.

In its outlook, USDA says during the next few days, record-setting warmth will shift from the western and central U.S. into the South. "By week’s end, much cooler weather will prevail from the Pacific Coast to the Plains," USDA elaborates. Generally cool weather will prevail from the Midwest into the Northeast, with late-week freezes expected in portions of the Great Lakes region, according to USDA. "Meanwhile, frequent showers will occur during the next five days along a wavering frontal boundary stretching from the northern and central Plains into the Ohio Valley and Mid-Atlantic states," USDA continues. Elsewhere, USDA says widespread precipitation will accompany cooler weather in the West, while mostly dry weather will prevail from the southern Plains into the Southeast—except for some showers in Florida.


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