Heat to Persist or Intensify Across Nation's Midsection

Posted on 03/09/2017 10:22 AM

USDA's Joint Ag Weather Facility says in the Corn Belt, In the Corn Belt, showers and thunderstorms are mainly confined to northern and eastern corn and soybean production areas. "In the vicinity of the Great Lakes, cool weather accompanies the showers," USDA adds. In contrast, hot weather (today’s high temperatures will approach 95°F) is building across the southwestern Corn Belt, promoting crop development but reducing topsoil moisture, USDA continues.

In the West, USDA reports very cool weather prevails across California and the Northwest, but near- to above-normal temperatures are returning to the Four Corners States. "Scattered showers dot the Northwest, while a freeze warning is in effect early today in northern Idaho and environs," USDA details.

On the Plains, USDA says cool weather and scattered showers linger across Montana and North Dakota. In stark contrast, hot, dry weather has developed across the central and southern Plains, it adds. "The sudden heat, which should result in today’s high temperatures topping 100°F as far north as southwestern Nebraska, is promoting winter wheat maturation and harvesting," USDA explains.

In the South, USDA reports scattered showers east of the Mississippi River are causing minor fieldwork delays. "In fact, many locations across the interior Southeast would benefit from a soaking rainfall to improve pasture growth and reduce stress on summer crops," USDA adds. Meanwhile, favorably dry weather prevails in the western Gulf Coast region, it continues.

In its outlook, USDA says a low-pressure system currently crossing Minnesota will reach the Mid-Atlantic coast by Friday. "The storm system will help to focus rainfall that could total 1 to 3 inches or more," USDA elaborates. Meanwhile, a separate area of showers could result in an additional 1 to 2 inches of rain across the lower Southeast, according to USDA. Elsewhere, it says little or no rain will fall during the next five days from central and southern California to the central and southern Plains. "In addition, heat will persist or intensify across the nation’s midsection during the next few days before spreading into California and the Southwest during the weekend," USDA explains.

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