Weather promotes midwestern fall fieldwork, harvest

Weather promotes midwestern fall fieldwork, harvest

Across the Corn Belt, dry weather is promoting corn and soybean harvesting, as well as winter wheat planting. Producers harvested 15% of the U.S. soybean acreage during the week ending October 21, equal to the amount harvested during the preceding 2 weeks. However, the overall U.S. soybean harvest was just 53% complete by October 21, well behind the 5-year average of 69%.

On the Plains, cool, cloudy, foggy weather lingers across western Texas, where cotton quality declined slightly (from 37 to 41% very poor to poor, statewide) during the week ending October 21. Elsewhere on the Plains, dry weather favors fieldwork, including summer crop harvesting and late-season winter wheat planting. Warm, windy weather is developing across the northern High Plains.

In the South, locally heavy rain is slowing late-season fieldwork in the western and central Gulf Coast regions. Cool, dry weather covers the remainder of the South, except for lingering warmth in southern Florida.

In the West, widely scattered showers are spreading northward across the northern Intermountain region. A few showers are also affecting Arizona and New Mexico. Mild, dry weather covers the remainder of the region, although air stagnation is leading to poor air quality across parts of the interior Northwest.

Eastern Pacific Hurricane Willa should reach the Mexican coast late Tuesday. A developing storm system in the southern U.S. will absorb deep tropical moisture associated with Willa’s remnants, resulting in heavy rain (1 to 3 inches or more) in the Gulf and Atlantic Coast States. During the weekend, a significant coastal storm (nor’easter) may hammer portions of the middle and northern Atlantic States with torrential rain, high winds, and heavy surf, while an early-season snowfall may occur in the northern Appalachians. Most of the remainder of the country will experience dry weather, although some light, mid- to late-week precipitation may occur from the central Plains into the upper Midwest and in the Pacific Northwest. Late-season warmth in the West will gradually overspread the High Plains.

Looking ahead, the 6- to 10-day outlook calls for near- to below-normal temperatures from the Plains to the East Coast, while warmer-than-normal weather will prevail in the West. Meanwhile, near- to above-normal precipitation across most of the country should contrast with drier-than-normal conditions in California and the Great Basin, as well as the Gulf Coast region.

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