Hot weather builds in the Plains, a warm-up to the east; largely dry across the Heartland

Hot weather builds in the Plains, a warm-up to the east; largely dry across the Heartland

Across the Corn Belt, dry weather favors corn and soybean maturation.  Late-season warmth remains focused on the western Corn Belt, where Thursday’s high temperatures will approach 90°F.  On August 27, more than one-fifth of the corn was rated very poor to poor in Missouri (36%), Nebraska (24%), and Minnesota (21%), while at least one-fifth of the soybeans were rated very poor to poor in Nebraska (24%), Missouri (21%), and North Dakota (20%). 

On the Plains, warm, dry weather—except near the Canadian border—continues to promote summer crop maturation, although many areas are reporting increasingly dry conditions.  On August 27, topsoil moisture was rated at least one-half very short to short in all the region’s states except Wyoming (31% very short to short), South Dakota (36%), and Colorado (37%).  Texas, much of which has been experiencing relentless heat since mid-June, reported statewide topsoil moisture rated 93% very short to short, with corresponding impacts on rangeland, pastures, and immature summer crops. 

In the South, Idalia—now a tropical storm with sustained winds near 60 mph—has exited the Atlantic Coast near the North Carolina-South Carolina border and is moving toward the east-northeast.  Lingering impacts include gusty winds, mainly in the coastal Carolinas, as well as heavy rain and rough surf along the middle Atlantic Coast.  Hardest-hit areas along Florida’s Gulf Coast are initiating recovery efforts following Wednesday’s high winds and record-setting storm surge, while Southeastern agricultural producers are assessing storm-related impacts on crops such as cotton and pecans. 

In the West, above-normal temperatures linger in most areas from California to the Four Corners States.  Meanwhile, cool air continues to overspread the Northwest, accompanied by a few showers.  The cooler, more humid weather is aiding Northwestern wildfire containment efforts, although smoky conditions linger in parts of Oregon and northern California.

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