Scattered rains across the Heartland; heat dominates the South


Scattered rains across the Heartland; heat dominates the South

Across the Corn Belt, warm weather is promoting a rapid pace of crop development, following extensive spring planting delays.  High temperatures near or slightly above 90°F should occur later Friday in much of the Midwest.  Scattered thundershowers in the western Corn Belt are locally improving topsoil moisture, which on June 19 was rated 44% very short to short in Nebraska.

On the Plains, hot weather favors winter wheat maturation and harvesting across the southern half of the region, where Friday’s high temperatures will broadly range from 100 to 105°F.  However, ongoing heat continues to stress a variety of summer crops, including corn, sorghum, and cotton.  On June 19 in Texas, a substantial portion of each of those crops— 32, 35, and 40% of the corn, sorghum, and cotton, respectively—was rated very poor to poor.  Elsewhere, scattered showers dot the northern half of the region, with cool weather confined to the northern High Plains.

In the South, extreme heat continues from the western Gulf Coast region to the southern Atlantic Coast, with some locations expected to reach or exceed 100°F again Friday.  The heat is adversely affecting some summer crops, including reproductive corn.  During the week ending June 19, topsoil moisture rated very short to short increased 22 percentage points in Louisiana (from 45 to 67%) and Georgia (from 49 to 71%).

In the West, an active monsoon circulation is producing a few thunderstorms in the Four Corners States, with spotty showers extending northward into Wyoming and Montana.  Meanwhile, hot, dry weather prevails in California, where drought impacts—such as low reservoir levels and depleted soil moisture—continue to mount.