Across the Corn Belt, dry weather favors a limited return to corn and soybean planting in the upper Midwest, although cool conditions are limiting evaporation from still-soggy fields. Meanwhile, unfavorably showery weather prevails in the Ohio Valley.
On the Plains, a chilly rain is falling from Montana to northern Kansas, maintaining abundant moisture reserves but curtailing fieldwork. In contrast, very warm, dry, breezy conditions on the southern High Plains are severely stressing rain-fed crops and perpetuating the threat of wildfires.
In the South, showers and thunderstorms are mostly confined to Kentucky and Tennessee. Elsewhere, warm, dry weather is promoting fieldwork and crop development, although rain is still needed in drought-affected areas of the western Gulf Coast region and the southern Atlantic States.
In the West, unusually cool weather continues to slow crop development. In addition, scattered showers linger across the Intermountain West and the interior Northwest.
An active weather pattern will continue for the remainder of the week. During the next 5 days, rainfall totals of at least 2 to 4 inches can be expected from the central Plains into the eastern Corn Belt. Severe thunderstorms may accompany the rain from the central and southern Plains to the Atlantic Seaboard. The southeastern Plains and the Mid-South will face the greatest likelihood of damaging storms—especially on May 24-25.
In contrast, mostly dry weather will prevail through week’s end from southern California into southern and western Texas.
Chilly conditions will persist in much of the West and expand across the Plains and Midwest.
Looking ahead, the 6- to 10-day outlook calls for near- to above-normal temperatures nationwide, except for cooler-than-normal weather north and west of a line from southern California to western North Dakota. Meanwhile, a broad area of drier-than-normal conditions centered on the southern Plains will contrast with above-normal precipitation across much of the nation’s northern tier.