Content ID


Corn Belt sees ‘rapid onset of drought’

Fifteen percent of the Midwest is affected by drought, twice as much of the region as a week ago, said the Drought Monitor on Thursday, as corn and soybean crops entered their reproductive stages. Illinois, Indiana, and Missouri had the largest increases, up 10 percentage points or more.

“The rapid onset of drought continues to affect parts of the Corn Belt along with the Ohio and Middle Mississippi valleys,” said the weekly Drought Monitor. In most areas, drought was listed as “moderate,” the first designation in the four-step rating system that progresses to “severe,” “extreme,” and “exceptional.”

Conditions worsened to severe drought in four counties near Champaign, in east-central Illinois, with soils drying out. “Impacts include visibly stressed corn and poor pasture conditions,” said the Drought Monitor. Overall, 18% of Illinois was in drought, compared to 8% last week, and 2.8% was in severe drought.

In Iowa, drought coverage was virtually unchanged at 14.2%, but a wedge-shaped area of extreme drought expanded somewhat in Plymouth, Woodbury, and Cherokee counties near Sioux City, in the northwestern part of the state.

Some 39% of Indiana was reported to be in drought, up from 10% last week, and 20% of Missouri, compared to less than 9% last week. Parts of northwest Wisconsin were said to be in moderate drought because of decreasing stream flows and loss of soil moisture. Nearly 8% of Wisconsin was rated in drought; last week, none of the state was.

Illinois and Iowa are the top corn and soybean states in the nation.

Produced with FERN, non-profit reporting on food, agriculture, and environmental health.
Read more about

Talk in Marketing

Most Recent Poll

To meet my machinery needs in the next year, I’m

holding off on buying and working with what I have
43% (33 votes)
I just want to see the responses
28% (21 votes)
looking online for deals
13% (10 votes)
sticking to my dealership
9% (7 votes)
hitting the auction market
7% (5 votes)
Total votes: 76