Wet weather, harvest delays across the eastern Corn Belt
Across the Corn Belt, fieldwork remains largely stalled by cool, cloudy, rainy weather. However, a return of dry weather across western corn and soybean production areas, including Minnesota, Nebraska, and the Dakotas, is allowing limited harvesting to resume, following recent rainfall.
On the Plains, warmth is replacing previously cool conditions across the northwestern half of the region. Friday’s high temperatures should reach 70°F or higher as far north as eastern Montana and western North Dakota, benefiting recently planted winter wheat. Chilly, breezy conditions prevail, however, across the east-central and southeastern Plains. Nationally, 55% of the winter wheat had emerged by October 24, slightly behind the 5-year average of 59%.
In the South, a sprawling storm system is producing widespread showers and slowing or halting fieldwork. Significant coastal flooding and unusually high tides are occurring in the middle Atlantic States, including parts of Virginia. Chilly conditions accompany the cloudiness and showers; Friday’s high temperatures will remain below 60°F as far south as central sections of Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi.
In the West, above-normal temperatures prevail, except in the still-showery Pacific Northwest. Fieldwork continues in the Desert Southwest, where the Arizona cotton harvest was 37% complete by October 24. Some California producers are resuming fieldwork, following the heavy-rain event of October 24-25.