Cold air barrels through Plains, Midwest
Temperatures were 15 to 25 degrees colder than normal over the northern Plains delaying fieldwork and planting, while it was normal to 20 degrees warmer than normal across the dry southwestern Plains. A frontal boundary was becoming stationary from the eastern Corn Belt states to southern OK, setting up a large temperature contrast from north to south.
Freezing precipitation continued over northern Colorado and western Nebraska north of this frontal boundary, while heavy rainshowers were overrunning this frontal boundary over parts of north central Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan, early today. Columbia, Missouri, reports 1.15" of rain; St. Louis, Missouri, .81"; Bloomington, Illinois, 1.97"; South Bend, Indiana, 1.20"; and Grand Rapids, Michigan, 0.98". Rains were delaying fieldwork but also moistening soils and encouraging early growth across the southern Corn Belt where Monday's crop progress report says that Illinois has planted 38% of its corn; Indiana, 21%; and Missouri, 37% by this time last year.
Cold damp weather farther north has prevented corn planting across Iowa and Nebraska. Illinois' winter wheat has improved 5% with 77% in good to excellent condition.
This week, we will see heavy rains from the west into the eastern Corn Belt states with the potential for 1" to 3" rains on Wednesday and Thursday. Localized flooding is a potential concern with an increasing threat of severe weather as well in parts of the southern Corn Belt. Cold wintry weather is forecast to push south from the northern Plains over the southern Plains as the Midwest storm moves eastward late this week.
The third snowstorm in a row and a cold snap is set to occur late this week. Winter wheat conditions showed an additional 1% to 2% moving into the very poor to poor condition category across parts of Kansas, Colorado, and Texas, principally due to subfreezing temperatures earlier last week.
Freezing precipitation will occur over parts of eastern Colorado, and western Kansas and Oklahoma Wednesday night and Thursday followed by freezing temperatures in the mid-20s south to near the southwestern Kansas and Oklahoma border on Friday a.m. The frost line could push as far south as Lubbock, Texas. Colder-than-normal temperatures are forecast next week with normal to below-normal precipitation.
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