Weather

Drought-easing rains on parts of the Plains

Across the Corn Belt, cool, dry weather prevails.  Scattered frost was noted Tuesday in portions of the upper Great Lakes region, including northern Lower Michigan.  Cloudiness is increasing in advance of an approaching storm system, with producers continuing to plant corn and soybeans as field conditions permit.  Although corn seeding was considerably slower in 2019, with only 53% of the crop planted by May 22, this year marks the second-slowest corn planting pace of the 21st century.

On the Plains, a drought-easing rainfall event is underway from Colorado and Kansas southward into Texas, though pockets of flash flooding are occurring.  Although the moisture is too late for some winter grains, rain is greatly benefiting rangeland, pastures, and summer crops.  On May 22, Texas led the nation with winter wheat rated 79% very poor to poor and led the region with rangeland and pastures rated 75% very poor to poor.  Meanwhile, dry weather has returned across eastern North Dakota and environs, but cool, wet field conditions continue to hamper planting activities.

In the South, hot, humid weather continues across Florida.  Elsewhere, scattered showers accompany near- or below-normal temperatures.  In many areas of the South, recent and ongoing showers have eased dryness-related concerns and have resulted in generally favorable growing conditions for pastures and summer crops.

In the West, hot, dry weather prevails from California’s Central Valley into the Desert Southwest.  Much of the remainder of the West is experiencing cool, dry weather, although wet snow lingers across the central Rockies.

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