Cold Spring Weather to Delay Planting Season
By Don Day, Jr., Meteorologist
The cold and wet spring in many areas of the Corn Belt and Midwest will likely delay many farmers from reaching their fields soon. In addition to wet fields, the unseasonably cold temperatures have resulted in cold soil temperatures which will delay planting and germination of the crops until later this spring season.
The powerful spring storm that ravaged portions of the Northern Plains this past weekend will add to more planting delays. Many areas of Nebraska, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota were hit hard by blizzard conditions last Friday/Saturday with portions of Wyoming, Colorado and Kansas impacted as well.
With no big or sustained warm up in sight and at least two more storm systems arriving this week, many areas from the Rockies to the Plains will have more cold and wet weather. Beef producers in the northern tier of the USA from the Pacific Northwest to the Northern Rockies should continue to be on high alert for more episodes of colder/wet weather for another two weeks.
Stressful weather on young and newborn livestock will continue to be a concern through the remainder of April as several more strong spring storm systems will be possible before more settled weather arrives in May.
The cold and wet weather this spring has kept soil temperatures colder than normal. The maps below show 4-inch soil temperatures across the U.S. after the weekend storm.