Drought-stricken areas in the U.S. receive some relief

The latest drought monitor was released today and it shows a good portion of the contingent U.S. received some much-needed precipitation.

The Plains, Midwest, and Mid-Atlantic Coast all saw above-normal precipitation. Thankfully, Oklahoma and Texas were included in that amount and improved conditions slightly, but temperatures were also higher than normal which did not help crops any.

The drought expanded in some parts of the Ohio and Tennessee Valleys as well as parts of southern New England.

Another weather system is expected to cross the country this week, but with an unusual path. USDA Meteorologist, Brad Rippey, says this system will actually go a little farther south and bring some much-needed rain to the Central and Southern Plains.

“Unfortunately from the standpoint of winter grains including winter wheat, this rain is coming too late to revive some of the drought-stressed crops, especially in southern production areas like Oklahoma and Texas.”

However, Rippey says the rain should benefit the northern crops.

The rain will be a little less welcome in parts of the Midwest because it could cause more planting delays. The area is already having trouble getting corn and soybeans in the ground.

Rippey says the bulk of the system will miss the far upper Midwest including the wettest parts of Minnesota and North Dakota, but it is expected to hit parts of the Eastern Corn belt.

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