Across the Corn Belt, breezy conditions and below-normal temperatures prevail in the wake of a cold front’s passage. In addition, snow showers linger across the Ohio Valley and the Great Lakes region. Newly fallen snow includes 3 inches in both Des Moines, Iowa, and Indianapolis, Indiana. Early Friday, sub-zero temperatures were confined to the upper Midwest, including much of Minnesota and the eastern Dakotas.
On the Plains, winter wheat is exposed to potential weather extremes. Cool, dry weather on the southern an eastern Plains contrasts with mild, dry, breezy conditions across the northern and central High Plains.
In the South, pockets of frost were noted early Friday across central and interior southern Florida. As a result, some citrus, strawberry, and vegetables producers had to employ protective measures—such as wind machines, helicopters, and sprinkler systems—to help guard against freeze injury. Cool, dry weather prevails across the remainder of the South, except for some snow showers in northern Kentucky.
In the West, unusually warm, dry conditions are causing most areas to slip deeper into drought. Only Colorado, Montana, and Wyoming are largely free of drought, while California, the Great Basin, and parts of the Southwest are contending with a third consecutive year of drought. Summer water-supply prospects remain bleak in the driest areas; other concerns include poor rangeland conditions and an elevated threat of wildfires.
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