Weather Conducive to Planting: Will It Continue?

April 21, 2010 08:06 AM
The weather doesn't get much better than this for planting. The Corn Belt is warmer than normal, with only two days that dipped below the normal temperature, says Elwynn Taylor, professor of ag meteorology at Iowa State University. Precipitation is also below the normal levels. This all looks great for farmers at the moment thanks to El Nino, Taylor says. But as of this week, El Nino's reign has come to an end, after a five-month stint as the pressure dropped today.
The U.S. weather has been shifting into shorter El Nino patterns, which are good for farmers. El Nino years have had high yields in the past, but this weather condition isn't absolutely necessary to have high yields, Taylor says. 
The National Weather Service predicts there is a 60% chance of a repeat weather season of last year, but there is still a 20% chance that the spring will be warm and dry.
Despite all the mixed predictions, Taylor anticipates a moist crop year like last year.
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