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Across the Corn Belt, cool weather prevails. In addition, showers are returning across the upper Midwest, ending a period of favorably dry weather. On June 9, U.S. corn planting was just 83% complete, breaking the 1995 record of 88%. U.S. soybean planting, 60% complete on June 9, was proceeding at the slowest pace since 1996.

On the Plains, a cool weather pattern is in place. Dry weather across most of the region favors fieldwork, but scattered showers dot the northern Plains. Pockets of excessive wetness remain a problem in several areas, particularly in South Dakota and across portions of the southern Plains. On June 9, topsoil moisture was rated approximately one-third surplus in Texas (32%), Oklahoma (36%), and South Dakota (36%).

In the South, cooler air is arriving in the wake of a departing cold front. A few showers linger, however, across the lower Southeast. Many Southeastern crops continue to benefit from the cooler weather and a recent boost in topsoil moisture. During the week ending June 9, topsoil moisture rated very short to short declined from 95 to 31% in South Carolina; from 76 to 28% in Alabama; and from 58 to 18% in North Carolina.

In the West, heat continues to build west of the Rockies. In the Pacific Coast States and the Desert Southwest, the sudden heat is promoting the development of winter grains, as well as fieldwork and crop growth. However, developing drought is a concern in a few northern production areas, especially in the Pacific Northwest. On June 9, topsoil moisture was rated 29% very short to short in Oregon, along with 22% in Washington.

Cool air will continue to settle across areas east of the Rockies, potentially slowing crop emergence and growth in areas of the Plains and Midwest that have suffered through a very wet planting season. As disturbances pivot across the Plains and Midwest, occasional showers (locally totaling 1 to 3 inches) will accompany the below-normal temperatures. Meanwhile, some additional rain will fall in the eastern U.S., especially around mid-week. Elsewhere, an early-season hot spell will continue across the Far West, with little rain expected during the next 5 days.

Looking ahead, the 6- to 10-day outlook for calls for below-normal temperatures across much of the Plains, Midwest, and Northeast, while hotter-than-normal conditions will dominate the West, Deep South, and southern Atlantic region. Meanwhile, near- or above-normal rainfall across most of the country will contrast with drier-than-normal weather in parts of the Rio Grande Valley and from the Pacific Northwest to Lake Superior.

Greg Soulje, a professional meteorologist since 1985, offers national agricultural weather forecasts via "This Week in Agribusiness."