Forecast calls for needed moisture & better planting conditions

An atmospheric scientist says farmers in parts of the Corn Belt are getting concerned about the lack of moisture.

Eric Snodgrass with Nutrien Ag Solutions tells Brownfield drought conditions are more widespread. “The drought monitor that just came out shows an extension of the drought area abnormally dry now going into more of Missouri, Iowa, and Illinois.”

But, Snodgrass says the forecast has some much-needed relief for some areas over the next week. “I’m hoping, hoping very much that the rains that are going to come through there in the next about 48 hours do materialize, and then there’s a second chance going through the weekend, and then another one next week, and if all three of those come through, hopefully, that gets us all singing a different tune here in the Midwest.”

Snodgrass tells Brownfield a ridge is keeping cold air off the west coast, which is good for the northern corn belt. “What that’s going to do is that’s going to turn the heat on. That’s going to get some of the GDD (growing degree day) counts back up where they belong, up there where we may be able to get 80-100 a week once the warmth really starts to move in and overall, the chances for precipitation are more of a scattered nature.”

Snodgrass doesn’t expect any more frost, and he’s expecting a flurry of planting activity. “We could have some nighttime lows that do get into the 30s but right now the pattern just really opened up to some nice, warm conditions.” He says that will help farmers in states like Wisconsin who have been waiting to get into the fields. “I think you’re going to see the State of Wisconsin planted with some pretty impressive speeds over the next probably fifteen days in total.”

Snodgrass says the warmth is moving into the upper plains, and the only snow remaining is a few parking lot piles.

Snodgrass says worldwide, he’s keeping an eye on drought conditions in northern Africa and Spain, dry fields in Brazil’s interior, cool weather in Ukraine, and a dry and cold beginning of fall for Australia.

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