WASHINGTON, D.C. (KCAU) — Since April 1st, this is the 11th driest stretch in parts of Iowa since records began in 1893, and as drought expands, it’s becoming a growing concern for farmers.
While precipitation was near average during the winter, the frozen ground didn’t allow the soil to absorb much moisture from the snowpack. This actually made things easier for planting crops like corn and soy this spring, but the lack of beneficial rain has led to well below average soil moisture, which is a critical factor in determining crop yield, especially for corn in the next 4 to 6 weeks.
“Our target times for corn are July, the time they have tassling, That’s their reproducitve time, that is a critical time for the biggest yield loss… Soybeans are a little bit different, they can kind of muddle along and muddle along, but then we need something for them in August” said Dennis Todey of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Late June and early July will be a key timeframe to watch the weather pattern for any signs of increased rainfall. For now, unfortunately, the pattern looks generally unfavorable for the next 7 to 10 days in the area.