KINGSLEY, Iowa (KCAU) — Last week’s rains are already having an impact on Siouxlanders’ lawns, and farmers are just as pleased with the rain.
Sioux City received roughly 1.7 inches from last week’s storms, which has put a dent in the area’s drought conditions.
“We took soil and moisture samples and it was a little nerve-racking for some parts of northwest Iowa, where those values were sitting at,” said Leah Ten Napel, Iowa State University Extension And Outreach.
“This past week we received 3.1 inches of rain here, and compared to last summer we didn’t have 3 inches of rain for almost 4 months,” said Randy Kroksh, a Farmer outside of Akron, Iowa.
For a typical planting season, moisture levels average 7 inches. However, the beginning of this year’s rain levels are well below average, at about 3 inches.
Kroksh said last week’s rain was just what farmers needed.
“It gets us off to a much better start than we had last year, even though at the beginning of this year we were thinking jeez were in here for a super dry year again. But now that we’re receiving moisture it’s definitely made us more positive and more optimistic,” Kroksh said.
However, the amount of rain received caused its own share of problems for some farmers.
“I’ve gotten a couple calls from growers in my territory of fields that just got pounded with rain, a lot of rain in a short period of time, and we love to see those high values in the inches of rain. However, their corn was laid over, because it got so much at one time and it couldn’t quite handle it,” said Ten Napel.
Woodbury County is experiencing severe to extreme drought conditions.
Ten Napel said more rain is needed to ease drought conditions.
“I don’t think it’s gonna get us in the clear yet. just because we are in such a bad drought and we’re so far behind on moisture, that I don’t believe it’s going to take us completely out of that drought category,” said Ten Napel
So far in 2023, Sioux City has received 3.4 inches of rain and Ten Napel says the recent rains are likely to improve this year’s crop yield as a result.