The latest crop reports indicate a significant increase in planting progress for corn in the northwest Midwest and Northern Plains after a very slow start due to cold weather.
Meanwhile, planting progress in much of the southern and eastern Midwest is running ahead of average, and is nearly complete in Illinois and Missouri. Soybean planting has also made good progress in most states except the Dakotas and Minnesota.
The weather pattern continues to look quite favorable during the next 10 days, with enough open weather to support planting, and warm conditions and enough rain to support developing crops. In all likelihood, corn and soybean ratings on June 1 will be quite high.
In the Southern Plains, drought conditions continue in the western portions of Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas, with winter wheat crop ratings remaining quite poor. There are several opportunities for scattered showers and thunderstorms in these dry areas during the next seven days. However, only in Kansas will this rainfall be of much benefit as crop development remains behind average.
We are keeping an eye on the Delta states, where soils are drying out due to a hot and dry pattern. It appears that above-normal temperatures and below-normal rainfall will continue during the next 10 days. The crop that will be the first to be affected will be pollinating corn. At this point, essentially no pollination was being reported on the latest crop report. However, early pollination will be underway in the next couple of weeks.
In South America, we continue to see hot and dry conditions in central Brazil, affecting pollinating and filling corn with crop losses ongoing. A strong cold front will move across the region on Saturday, with some light to locally moderate rain expected. However, this is not a pattern-changing feature. The Brazil dry season is fully established, and expected to dominate through the remainder of the growing season.
Back in North America, we continue to keep our eye on a persistent ridge of high pressure over Western Canada. This high will allow for favorable planting weather in the Canadian Prairies during the next few weeks. However, if it were to persist into June, it could have a significant negative impact on spring wheat and canola.
Michael Palmerino can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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