More favorable weather for harvest across the Corn Belt

Across the Corn Belt, a slow warming trend has commenced. Chilly conditions linger, however, in the eastern Corn Belt, where Friday’s high temperatures should range from 50 to 55°F—and some fields remain unfavorably wet. Meanwhile, harvest activities continue (or have resumed) in the western Corn Belt, where mild, dry weather prevails.

On the Plains, dry, breezy conditions accompany unusual warmth. Later Friday, high temperatures should reach or exceed 70°F as far north as southern South Dakota. In areas with adequate soil moisture, above-normal temperatures are promoting winter wheat development. However, in drier areas—including the central and southern High Plains and portions of Montana—proper autumn establishment of winter wheat remains a concern.

In the South, a storm system crossing the eastern Gulf of Mexico is producing widespread rain across Florida. Farther north, however, freezes occurred Friday morning along and north of a line extending from Arkansas to central North Carolina, ending the growing season in those areas.

In the West, unsettled, showery weather continues along the northern Pacific Coast. Cool air has spread inland across the Pacific Coast States, but the remainder of the western U.S. is experiencing warm, dry weather. Southwestern warmth favors fieldwork, including cotton harvesting, which in Arizona was 45% complete at the end of October.

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