Heat wave conditions grip the Corn Belt; relief on the northern Plains


Heat wave conditions grip the Corn Belt; relief on the northern Plains

Across the Corn Belt, an early-season heat wave continues to promote a rapid pace of crop development.  Tuesday’s high temperatures will generally range from 90 to 100°F, although cooler conditions are arriving across the upper Midwest.  Tuesday’s heat follows Monday’s daily-record highs, which included 103°F in Lincoln, Nebraska, and 100°F in St. Louis, Missouri.  On Monday afternoon and during the overnight hours, parts of the northern and eastern Corn Belt, from the Dakotas to Ohio, contended with severe thunderstorms, featuring large hail and damaging winds.

On the Plains, heat continues across the southeastern half of the region.  Meanwhile, cool, showery, breezy weather covers the northern High Plains.  Early Tuesday, thunderstorms are sweeping northward across the Dakotas.  As the central Plains’ heat wave peaked on June 13, daily-record highs in Nebraska soared to 109°F in McCook, 108°F in North Platte, and 106°F in Imperial.  The heat is hastening winter wheat maturation but increasing stress on various summer crops

In the South, early-season heat is unfavorably timed for corn, some of which is entering the temperature-sensitive reproductive stage of development.  In South Carolina, where 37% of the corn was silking on June 12, triple-digit, daily record highs on Monday (June 13) included 103°F in Columbia and 102°F in Florence.  Early Tuesday, showers and thunderstorms spreading into the middle Atlantic States are providing some relief from the hot weather.

In the West, cool weather prevails, except for lingering heat in the southern Rockies.  In fact, Freeze Warnings were in effect early Tuesday in the northern Great Basin.  Despite the cooler weather, wildfires near Flagstaff, Arizona—including the Pipeline Fire—are resulting in smoky conditions.  Meanwhile, precipitation continues to fall in the northern Rockies, where significant flooding has occurred in and near Yellowstone National Park.