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June 6, 2017

Dry Conditions Developing in Northwestern Corn Belt

The U.S. Drought Monitor last week indicated that 20% to 25% of North Dakota and South Dakota were in the early stages of drought. The driest conditions were mainly in the central parts of the two states, but the dry conditions are expanding eastward.

In the weekly Crop Progress Report, North Dakota reported that 54% of the state's topsoil was short to very short on moisture and South Dakota reported that 54% was also short to very short. The forecast is calling for limited chances of rainfall in the region and I think the next Drought Monitor, which will be released next Thursday, will show dryer conditions.

These dry conditions are not a major concern at the present time, but it certainly needs to be watched going forward.

Areas of Concern for U.S. Crops

Now that we are into the summer growing season, each week I will list what I feel are the areas of concern for the U.S. crops.

  • Developing dryness in northwestern Corn Belt - North Dakota, South Dakota, and northwestern Minnesota. Limited rainfall in the forecast going forward.
  • Late planting of corn in the eastern Corn Belt. Corn planted now has lower yield capacity than corn planted in early May.
  • Spotty corn stands due to prior saturated conditions and crusting in the eastern Corn Belt.
  • Replanted corn planted later than desired.
  • Too rapid of drying in eastern Corn Belt could delay early corn growth.