No HRW relief in extended forecast

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The National Weather Service’s (NWS) 90-day forecast continues to give elevated odds of above-normal temps and below-normal precip across HRW areas of the Southern Plains. Below-normal precip is likely over nearly all of Texas and the western half of Oklahoma for February through April, unchanged from the previous 90-day forecast for January through March. The predicted bubble of below-normal precip is expanded to now include all of Colorado, the western half of Kansas and most of the western portion of Nebraska. NWS expects above-normal temps from Nebraska southward and eastward.

While the forecast offers little hope for relief from moisture stress for the HRW crop, NWS calls for above-normal precip over the bulk of SRW production areas from February through April, along with above-normal temps. Late-winter/early spring precip would not only support SRW development as the crop breaks dormancy, it would also provide beneficial soil moisture ahead of spring planting in the eastern Corn Belt.

The late-winter/early spring forecast gives mostly “equal chances” for above-, below- and normal precip and temps across nearly the entire western Corn Belt through April.

White winter wheat areas of the Pacific Northwest should see some improvement in drought conditions, as precip is expected to be above normal. But temps are also expected to be below normal across the region through April.

 

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