End of July brings brief respite from heat In the Corn Belt
The third week of July, week-ending July 23, brought scorching heat and dry weather to the Central U.S. making it one of the hottest and driest third weeks of July in 30+ years, according to WeatherTrends360. Hot and dry weather was most prominent in areas experiencing drought, while areas east of the Mississippi River saw wetter weather. Triple digit temperatures baked portions of the South Central United States with several record high temperatures falling in the heat wave.
Hot weather combined with pre-existing dry conditions were a source of stress for crops, and exacerbated drought conditions that have grown significantly in the past month across portions of northeast Texas, Oklahoma, southeastern Kansas, the southern half of Missouri, and Arkansas. A flash drought has struck Arkansas; in just four weeks the state went from no areas in drought in mid-June to almost the entire state in drought by mid-July.
Looking ahead, the forecast for the final week of July has shifted favorably for crops in the Corn Belt with a cooler and wetter week than previously expected. Although precipitation will be a bit more widespread than recently, especially in central and western areas of the Corn Belt, there are likely some areas that will still miss out on appreciable rainfall. The eastern Corn Belt will continue to see the best chance of precipitation in the region.
According to forecasts from WeatherTrends360, the final week of July, week-ending July 30, will bring temperatures closer to normal for the Corn Belt as a whole and precipitation will be above normal.
While the end of July will bring a much-needed break from the excessive heat and dryness for many, this respite will be temporary as hotter and drier weather is expected to return in August. The precipitation pattern is likely to return to one in which the eastern Corn Belt is wetter while central and especially the western Corn Belt are drier. Drought conditions are unlikely to shrink anytime soon across the South Central United States and into the western Plains.
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