Very little, if any, precipitation was received last week across the state, which continued to speed the crops along in their development.
Temperatures were more moderate last week, with the statewide average temperature being below normal for the first time since early July.
It was also a very good week to put up good quality hay.
Across the Corn Belt, mild to warm, mainly dry weather favors corn and soybean maturation.
On the Plains, markedly cooler air has overspread the region following Monday’s record-setting heat. Meanwhile on the northern Plains, small grain harvest activities are resuming.
La Nina conditions have developed in the central Pacific Ocean. La Nina is defined as the periodic cooling of sea surface temperatures in the east-central equatorial Pacific Ocean. The current La Nina is forecast to strengthen through the fall and persist into 2011.
Dry and rather warm conditions are expected Sunday and early next week.
Dry and less humid weather will continue for another day, as high pressure slowly slides east into the area by Monday night. Temperatures will be cooler than last week, and closer to "normal".
A weak weather system will approach the area Tuesday, with a chance of scattered showers and thunderstorms Tuesday night.
During the next two days, the remnants of A tropical depression will contribute to locally heavy rainfall in the Gulf Coast States. Meanwhile, a weak cold front will enhance rainfall in the Mid-Atlantic States.
On the Plains, high temperatures will again exceed 100 degrees as far north as Kansas, although key crop areas on the southern High Plains continue to avoid the extreme heat.
Hot and dry conditions continued over much of the state last week. These conditions are taking a toll on the corn and soybeans with producers reporting signs of crop stress in the fields. Farmers are continuing to bale hay, haul grain, and spray.
Potentially dangerous heat is expected to return to central Illinois next week.
A return to hot and very muggy conditions can be expected by Monday across the Midwest.