Despite drier soils across the southern and eastern Midwest along with warm-hot temperatures, crop conditions remain quite good across most of the Midwest. The reason for this is the drier weather has forced the corn crop to become better rooted as it searches for subsoil moisture. Also, the fact that we are not yet at the critical pollination stage for corn in most of the Midwest makes it less vulnerable to hot weather. Most of the soybeans have been planted except in the double-cropped areas in the east where the crop is being planted as the wheat gets harvested. Clearly more rainfall and moderate temperatures will be needed to support pollinating corn, developing soybeans and emergence of double-cropped beans as we go forward. We do expect this to be the case during the next seven days with near to above normal rainfall in the Midwest along with moderate temperatures. This will be due to the fact that the ridge in the southwest U.S. that have been promoting some hot weather as far east as the Missouri River Valley will shift even further to the west, allowing for more trough to develop in the Midwest. We expect a boundary zone to set up between the hot weather in the west and the cooler weather under the trough. This will allow for frequent episodes of scattered showers and thunderstorms in the Midwest with no significant heat.
Growing conditions are expected to remain quite favorable in the Northern Plains with adequate soil moisture and no persistent heat. The spring wheat crop is currently heading. The corn crop will be entering pollination soon.
No major disruptions to the winter wheat harvest in the Southern Plains through the end of this week. Some harvest disruptions may develop next week as the ridge shifts further to the west and a frontal boundary enters the region. This situation would favor row-crop development.
The Delta and Southeast states have seen much of the corn crop go through pollination under drying soils and some hot weather. However this has allowed for a deeper-rooted corn crop gathering subsoil moisture. Overall corn conditions are not bad considering it is the Deep South. More rain will be needed to support developing soybeans and emerging double-cropped soybeans which are being planted as the wheat harvest is nearly complete. Some increase in showers is expected next week.
We see no signs of La Nina developing at this time. After a major drop in sea surface temperatures from March to April, temperatures have now stabilized at near normal levels during the past 45 days.
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