Largely favorable fieldwork weather for the Heartland


Largely favorable fieldwork weather for the Heartland

Across the Corn Belt, cool, dry weather prevails east of the Mississippi River, where Tuesday morning’s low temperatures locally fell below 20°F. Among Midwestern States, only Michigan (85% harvested) and Ohio (84%) still have more than one-tenth of their corn still standing in the field. Meanwhile, warmer weather is arriving across the western Corn Belt on southerly winds. Tuesday’s high temperatures should top 65°F in much of Nebraska.

On the Plains, unusual warmth is further reducing soil moisture for winter wheat establishment. On November 21, Montana led the nation with topsoil moisture rated 99% very short to short. On that date, statewide topsoil moisture was rated at least one-half very short to short in five other states overlapping the Plains: New Mexico (81%), Colorado (79%), Texas (66%), Wyoming (60%), and Oklahoma (58%). Among major winter wheat production states, Montana and Texas are tied for the national lead—along with Oregon—with 42% of the crop rated in very poor to poor condition.

In the South, cool, dry weather favors late-season fieldwork. Sub-freezing temperatures were noted Tuesday morning as far south as central Alabama. Harvest activities are quickly advancing and in many areas are nearing completion. On November 21 in North Carolina, harvests of soybeans, cotton, and peanuts were 77, 82, and 96% complete, respectively.

In the West, the latest round of wet weather is overspreading the Pacific Northwest, while snow is blanketing portions of the Cascades and northern Rockies. Meanwhile, spotty rain showers are affecting the Desert Southwest. Elsewhere in the West, mild, dry weather favors late-autumn fieldwork. By November 21, California’s cotton harvest was nearly finished (97% complete), versus the 5-year average of 78%.