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Weekly Iowa Crops and Weather Report

Weekly Iowa Crop and Weather Report

Weekly Iowa Crop and Weather Report

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of August 30 – September 5, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig commented today on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“Many parts of the state have experienced some relief from the ongoing drought conditions thanks to seasonal temperatures and more rainfall,” said Secretary Naig. “As we approach harvest, short-term outlooks show warmer and drier conditions.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Precipitation across most of the State, in addition to that received the previous week, limited Iowa’s farmers to 4.3 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending September 5, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Field activities included harvesting hay, oats and corn silage.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 8% very short, 26% short, 63% adequate and 3% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 16% very short, 37% short, 46% adequate and 1% surplus.

Corn in or beyond the dough stage reached 97%, four days ahead of the 5-year average. Seventy-seven percent of the corn crop has reached the dent stage or beyond, three days ahead of normal. Fourteen percent of corn has reached maturity, equal to the 5-year average. Iowa’s corn condition rated 60% good to excellent. Crop damage was reported in the northeast and west-central parts of the State from heavy rain, hail and strong winds. Soybeans coloring or beyond reached 40%, two days ahead of the 5-year average. Soybeans dropping leaves reached 10%, also two days ahead of normal. Soybean condition was rated 61% good to excellent. Several reporters noted soybeans have benefitted from the recent increased rain.

The third cutting of alfalfa hay reached 88% complete, four days ahead of the 5-year average. Pasture condition was rated 34% good to excellent. No livestock issues were reported for the week.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Seasonal temperatures returned to Iowa over the reporting period with slightly cooler conditions in eastern Iowa. The statewide average temperature was 68.0 degrees, 0.6 degree below normal. Widespread rain fell statewide with the wettest conditions in western Iowa; multiple rounds of showers and thunderstorms helped ease some drought conditions. This was the second week in which Iowa’s average precipitation total was above normal.

Clouds gradually cleared through the afternoon hours on Sunday (29th) as pleasant conditions built-in behind a passing cold front. Daytime highs stayed in the upper 70s and low 80s with a light northerly wind. Winds became variable overnight with morning lows on Monday (30th) ranging from the upper 50s north to mid-60s south. Clear skies stuck around across northern Iowa with partly cloudy skies over the state’s southern half. Afternoon temperatures reached into the mid-80s south to upper 70s north. Scattered thunderstorms began forming in northwestern Iowa during the evening hours before consolidating into an organized squall line prior to midnight. Some embedded storms turned severe as the line pushed into west-central Iowa. Golf ball-sized hail shredded crops in Ida County and there were multiple reports of tree and structural damage around the Des Moines metro area. The leading edge of the squall line raced over the Iowa-Missouri border by 3:00 am on Tuesday (31st) as moderate rainfall filled in behind the line. Rain totals measured at 7:00 am were highest from central to southwestern Iowa where over 100 stations observed an inch or more. Multiple stations also reported above two inches, ranging from 2.04 inches near Anita (Cass County) to 3.45 inches in Mondamin (Harrison County); the statewide average rainfall was 0.68 inch. The remaining showers moved out of central Iowa by mid-day with additional isolated cells developing in eastern Iowa during late afternoon. Temperatures remained in the 70s as skies gradually cleared west to east into the morning hours on Wednesday (1st). Rain totals from the backside of the disturbance were generally under a few tenths of an inch, though higher totals were observed in southeastern Iowa with Le Claire Lock and Dam (Scott County) measuring an inch while Columbus Junction (Louisa County) reported 1.30 inches. Uncommon easterly winds and mostly sunny skies remained through the day as mid to upper 70s blanketed Iowa.

Overnight lows into Thursday (2nd) varied from the upper 50s southeast to mid-60s northwest. A broad area of low pressure began propagating through northwestern Iowa late morning, bringing showers and few thunderstorms over the area. A secondary wave of heavier showers and storms formed along the low’s attendant cold front late into the evening and pushed over most of the state’s western two-thirds by sunrise on Friday (3rd). Much of northern Iowa experienced rain totals of above 0.50 inch with several stations observing more than 1.50 inches; a station near Lake Park (Dickinson County) measured 2.10 inches while the statewide average was 0.49 inch. Overcast skies persisted through the day and into Saturday (4th) morning holding lows in the mid to upper 60s for most of Iowa. Mist and drizzle were present in eastern Iowa into the early afternoon as pockets of sunshine broke through the clouds. Skies continued to clear with temperatures topping out in the mid to upper 70s. Spotty fog and some upper 40-degree readings were reported in northern Iowa on into early Sunday (5th).

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from 0.33 inch at Keokuk Lock and Dam (Lee County) to 3.89 inches near New Market (Taylor County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 1.42 inches while the normal is 0.90 inch. Several southern stations observed the week’s high temperature of 89 degrees on the 30th, on average seven degrees above normal. Stanley (Buchanan County) reported the week’s low temperature of 46 degrees on the 5th, six degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of August 23 – August 29, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig commented today on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“Widespread rain fell across the state over the last several days. While the rainfall was beneficial, some parts of northeast Iowa experienced flash flooding and isolated crop damage from severe thunderstorms,” said Secretary Naig. “During stretches of drier weather, farmers have already started chopping silage and seeding cover crops.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Much needed rainfall across most of the State limited Iowa’s farmers to 4.4 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending August 29, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Field activities included harvesting hay, oats and corn silage. Producers were getting ready for row crop harvest with repairs to equipment and bins.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 14% very short, 30% short, 52% adequate and 4% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 20% very short, 41% short, 38% adequate and 1% surplus.

Corn in or beyond the dough stage reached 95%, one week ahead of the 5-year average. Sixty-six percent of the corn crop has reached the dent stage or beyond, four days ahead of normal. Six percent of corn has reached maturity. Iowa’s corn condition rated 58% good to excellent. Wind and heavy rain damaged some corn and soybean fields in north-central, northeast and southeast Iowa. Soybeans coloring or beyond reached 18%, two days ahead of the 5-year average. There were scattered reports of soybeans dropping leaves. Soybean condition was rated 60% good to excellent. Oats for grain harvest is virtually complete at 99%.

The third cutting of alfalfa hay reached 79% complete, two days ahead of the 5-year average. Pasture condition was rated 31% good to excellent. The week’s rains helped pastures show improvement as they greened up in some areas.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

A remarkable shift in the storm track across the Midwest brought several days of heavy rainfall and severe weather over northern Iowa. Rain totals topped four to ten inches above normal at multiple stations. Beneficial rains fell across much of the severe to extreme drought region. Unseasonable warmth was also observed statewide during the reporting period with positive departures of eight to twelve degrees in southern Iowa. The statewide average temperature was 77.1 degrees, 5.7 degrees above normal.

Winds shifted to a southeasterly direction Sunday (22nd) afternoon under generally clear skies with highs in the upper 70s and low 80s. Conditions were cooler in northwest Iowa where isolated thunderstorms formed and moved east. An upper-level weather disturbance pushed through the state overnight into the very early morning hours on Monday (23rd), firing a line of thunderstorms from central Iowa into the northeast corner. The complex turned southeast and pushed out of eastern Iowa before noon leaving behind rain total above 0.50 inch for many stations in the northeast; over 20 stations reported an inch or more with Fayette (Fayette County) observing 1.90 inches. Tuesday (24th) began an active stretch of days as the first of several rounds of showers and thunderstorms impacted Iowa. A line of strong thunderstorms formed during the early afternoon over the state’s northern half as an intense squall line developed in northeastern Iowa. High humidity and temperatures in the upper 80s and low 90s fed atmospheric instability. Several storms turned severe into the evening hours with widespread reports of severe straight-line winds causing crop and isolated structural damage; 70 mph winds were observed from Hazelton (Buchanan County) to Dyersville (Dubuque County). Additional thunderstorms, some strong to severe, popped up in southwestern Iowa after midnight producing locally heavy downpours; thunderstorms reformed in southeastern Iowa as well. Rain totals reported at 7:00 am on Wednesday (25th) were highest in east-central Iowa with the northwestern stations missing a majority of the rain. Two Iowa County stations, North English and Williamsburg, measured 3.08 inches and 3.45 inches, respectively. Widespread totals of 0.25 inch to near an inch were observed. Daytime highs returned to the mid to upper 80s with 90-degree readings southwest.

Overnight lows into Thursday (26th) dropped into the mid-60s and low 70s in western Iowa as a complex of thunderstorms pushed over the Iowa-Nebraska border. The line expanded as it crossed Iowa through the afternoon. Two additional lines of thunderstorms fired across a stationary front draped over northern Iowa later in the evening and into early Friday (27th). Heavy rain fell along the Iowa-Minnesota border with 80 stations measuring at least 1.00 inch; more than 30 stations reported 2.00 inches or greater with 6.50 inches observed near Ringsted (Emmet County). The statewide average rainfall was 0.74 inch. Unstable conditions in northeastern Iowa fired supercell thunderstorms that produced two weak tornadoes near Clear Lake (Cerro Gordo) and Marble Rock (Floyd County) during the early evening hours; crop damage was again reported along with spotty structural damage. Localized flash flooding also occurred as sluggish thunderstorms moved through northeastern Iowa. Storms continued to pop up over Highway 20 corridor into Saturday (28th) morning. The heaviest rain totals ranged from 2.00 inches at Spencer Municipal Airport (Clay County) to 8.74 inches in Elma (Howard County) with widespread totals above 1.50 inches near Waterloo (Linn County) to Mason City (Cerro Gordo County) and northeast; Iowa’s southwestern half experienced dry conditions. Gusty southerly winds and mostly sunny skies pushed afternoon highs into the upper 80s and low 90s. Additional thunderstorms, some severe, pushed into northwestern Iowa ahead of a cold front during the late evening hours. Much of northern Iowa received additional rainfall with higher totals in the northwest corner; Rock Valley (Sioux County) reported 1.01 inches while Sibley (Osceola County) measured 2.76 inches. Totals were generally above 0.50 inch from Mason City west. The front continued south into Sunday (29th) with morning temperatures in the mid-60s northwest to low 70s southeast.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from 0.07 inch at Burlington Municipal Airport (Des Moines County) to 13.98 inches at Elma. The statewide weekly average precipitation was 2.26 inch while the normal is 0.97 inch. Multiple south-central stations observed the week’s high temperature of 98 degrees on the 24th, on average 15 degrees above normal. Elkader (Clayton County) and Stanley (Buchanan County) reported the week’s low temperature of 50 degrees on the 16th, on average six degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of August 16 – August 21, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig commented today on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“After generally dry and pleasant weather during the Iowa State Fair, beneficial rain fell across much of northern Iowa over the last few days, providing some help to the extreme drought areas,” said Secretary Naig. “As we enter the final days of August, a more active weather pattern looks to bring additional chances of rainfall as soybeans are reaching a critical stage of development.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Despite spotty precipitation, Iowa’s farmers had 6.1 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending August 22, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Field activities included harvesting hay and oats. Producers were utilizing the release of CRP land for haying and grazing.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 24% very short, 40% short, 36% adequate and 0% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 27% very short, 42% short, 31% adequate and 0% surplus. Northwest, Central and East Central Iowa had the lowest subsoil moisture levels in the State, with more than 80% rated short to very short.

Corn in or beyond the dough stage reached 90%, six days ahead of the 5-year average. Forty-seven percent of the corn crop has reached the dent stage or beyond, four days ahead of normal. There were scattered reports of corn reaching the mature stage. Some producers have begun chopping silage. Iowa’s corn condition rated 58% good to excellent. Soybeans setting pods reached 95%, eight days ahead of normal. Five percent of soybeans were coloring. There were a few reports of soybeans dropping leaves. Soybean condition was rated 61% good to excellent. Sudden death syndrome was observed in some soybean fields across the State. Oats harvested for grain reached 97%.

The third cutting of alfalfa hay reached 68% complete, three days ahead of the 5-year average. Both mites and army worms have been spotted in alfalfa and grass hay crops. Pasture condition was rated 31% good to excellent. Water for cows and calves on pasture has become an issue as some creeks and ponds dry up.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Above-average temperatures were observed across most of Iowa during the reporting period with a cool down from a cold frontal passage late in the week. The statewide average temperature was 72.7 degrees, 0.7 degrees above normal. Though most of the week was dry, a large-scale weather system brought widespread rainfall across Iowa with above-normal totals approaching two inches in drought-stricken northern Iowa; much of southern Iowa reported only a few tenths of an inch of rainfall.

Sunshine and southeasterly winds led to pleasant conditions on Sunday (15th) afternoon. Partly cloudy skies remained overnight into Monday (16th) morning as a dome of high pressure dominated the weather pattern over the Midwest, lending to quiet conditions. Afternoon temperatures ranged from the low to mid-80s west to upper 70s east. Starry skies and a light southerly wind held temperatures in the upper 50s and low 60s into Tuesday (17th) with some clouds streaming into central Iowa. Daytime temperatures were on the rise with increasing southerly winds and humidity; mid to upper 80s were observed in western Iowa while eastern Iowa reported temperatures three to five degrees cooler. Hazy skies were observed into Wednesday (18th) as wildfire smoke filtered into the region. Daytime highs rose into the 80s with a few 90-degree readings under partly cloudy skies. Morning lows reported at 7:00 am on Thursday (19th) were unseasonably warm, generally in the mid to upper 60s, up to nine degrees above normal. Dew point temperatures in the upper 60s and low 70s combined with afternoon highs in the upper 80s led to very muggy conditions into the evening hours.

Light showers formed in western Iowa early on Friday (20th) before dissipating during the late morning hours. Southwesterly winds picked up through the afternoon as a cold front approached the state front from the west. Muggy conditions continued, which helped fire stronger thunderstorms in northwestern Iowa as the boundary entered the state. Some storms turned severe with a brief tornado reported near Sibley (Osceola County), causing some damage to trees and outbuildings. As the front swept across the state, measurable rainfall was observed at a majority of stations with general totals of a few tenths of inch over the state’s northern half. Numerous stations in north-central Iowa reported above 0.50 inch with nearly 30 stations measuring an inch or more. Pocahontas (Pocahontas County) reported 2.15 inches while Webster City (Hamilton County) observed 2.92 inches. Behind the front, cooler and more pleasant conditions were experienced on Saturday (21st) with sunny skies and a light northerly wind. Temperatures remained in the mid-70s to low 80s during the daytime hours and dropped into the 50s overnight into Sunday (22nd) morning.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no accumulation at several southern Iowa stations to 3.26 inches at Webster City (Hamilton County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.57 inch while the normal is 0.95 inch. Multiple stations observed the week’s high temperature of 92 degrees on the 20th, on average nine degrees above normal. Elkader (Clayton County) reported the week’s low temperature of 46 degrees on the 16th, 12 degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of August 9 – August 15, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig commented today on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“We’re excited to welcome back the great Iowa State Fair. Fairgoers should see temperatures gradually rise through Sunday with slight chances of scattered thunderstorms,” said Secretary Naig. “The end of August outlooks are appearing warmer and wetter, which would be beneficial to areas experiencing extreme drought.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Although isolated areas of Iowa received substantial rain, statewide farmers had 6.1 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending August 15, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Some areas of the State had no measurable precipitation during the week. Due to drought conditions, haying and grazing of CRP land continues. Field activities included harvesting hay and oats.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 23% very short, 38% short, 38% adequate and 1% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 27% very short, 40% short, 33% adequate and 0% surplus. Topsoil moisture levels in Central and East Central Iowa were the lowest in the State, with more than 80% rated short to very short.

Corn in or beyond the dough stage reached 83%, one week ahead of the 5-year average. Twenty-nine percent of the corn crop has reached the dent stage, four days ahead of normal. There were scattered reports of corn reaching the mature stage. Iowa’s corn condition rated 58% good to excellent. Soybeans setting pods reached 90%, one week ahead of normal. Across the State, there were scattered reports of soybeans coloring. Soybean condition was rated 58% good to excellent. Oats harvested for grain reached 93%, three days behind the 5-year average.

The third cutting of alfalfa hay reached 54% complete, two days ahead of the 5-year average. Hay condition rated 55% good to excellent. Pasture condition was rated 33% good to excellent. In some areas of the State, pastures have stopped growing due to lack of rain. No comments concerning livestock were received.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Warmer temperatures and higher humidity returned to Iowa over the reporting period with positive temperature departures of up to four degrees observed across the central and southern parts of the state. The statewide average temperature was 73.9 degrees, 2.1 degrees above normal. Severe thunderstorms were also reported over a few days with heavy rainfall in northeastern Iowa, which was the only part of the state to measure above normal rainfall; drier than normal conditions persisted over the rest of Iowa.

A low-pressure center continued to spin through Iowa on Sunday (8th), producing isolated showers as temperatures remained seasonal in the low 80s with a southerly wind. A severe thunderstorm popped up in northwestern Iowa during the early evening hours and slowly moved into central Iowa overnight into Monday (9th). The storm had several tornado warnings associated with it and a brief EF-0 was reported in Ocheyedan (Osceola County) producing some damage to a barn. Additional thunderstorms formed in northeastern Iowa with locally heavy downpours, creating localized flash flooding. The National Weather Service co-op station in Ionia (Chickasaw County) reported an astounding 11.25 inches of rainfall from a sluggish storm producing very heavy rain. Over 30 stations measured an inch or more with six in Chickasaw and Floyd counties reporting over four inches. As the low pushed farther east, afternoon highs rose into the mid-80s to low 90s under sunny skies. Overnight lows remained above normal, with upper 60s and 70s statewide; the average low was 68 degrees, six degrees above normal. Tuesday (10th) was the first anniversary of the devastating derecho that impacted Iowa and became the costliest thunderstorm in United States history. Severe thunderstorms fired in eastern Iowa during the afternoon hours with multiple severe straight-line wind reports from Marion to Fayette counties with a cluster of 60-70 mph wind gusts around Cedar Rapids (Linn County). Additional strong storms moved through southeastern Iowa late in the evening. Several stations reported more than an inch with a gauge near Central City (Linn County) collecting 3.24 inches.

Another round of isolated thunderstorms formed across a few counties in extreme southeast Iowa early in the morning on Wednesday (11th), leading to downpours and roadway flooding; Burlington (Des Moines County) measured 2.66 inches. Winds began to shift to a northerly direction during the afternoon as a cold front dropped south through Iowa. A few stronger storms popped along the boundary in eastern Iowa where temperatures remained in the upper 80s. A severe-warned cell moved through Dubuque (Dubuque County) leaving behind 0.99 inch of rain. Muggy conditions greeted the opening of the Iowa State Fair Thursday (12th) morning. Slow-moving thunderstorms remained over southeastern Iowa into the afternoon hours with heavier amounts reported at several stations along with flash flood warnings. Rain totals observed on Friday (13th) morning for the previous 24 hours showed totals ranging from 0.01 inches at Mount Pleasant (Henry County) to 1.74 inches at Centerville (Appanoose County). Behind the cold front, winds shifted to the northwest with low to mid-80s under sunshine. Starry skies and variable winds persisted overnight into Saturday (14th) with lows dropping into the upper 40s northwest to low 60s southeast. Lower humidity and temperatures in the lower 80s created a pleasant day across Iowa with clear conditions continuing into Sunday (15th) morning as low temperatures reported at 7:00 am in the low to mid-50s.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no accumulation at multiple stations in western Iowa to 11.25 inches at Ionia. The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.47 inch while the normal is 0.95 inch. Clarinda (Page County) observed the week’s high temperature of 96 degrees on the 12th, 11 degrees above normal. Forest City (Winnebago County) reported the week’s low temperature of 45 degrees on the 14th, 14 degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of July 19 – July 25, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig commented today on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“Warmer temperatures combined with a drier weather pattern moved into Iowa over the last week,” said Secretary Naig. “Forecasts show county fairgoers are going to experience hot temperatures as the heat wave continues across the state. We’re hearing about moisture-stressed crops, especially in the drought region, so we’re keeping an eye on rain chances predicted over the weekend.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Hot, dry conditions and minimal rain allowed Iowa farmers 6.4 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending July 25, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Field activities included applying fungicides and insecticides and harvesting hay and oats.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 14% very short, 39% short, 46% adequate and 1% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 20% very short, 40% short, 39% adequate and 1% surplus. The shortage of moisture was especially evident in northwest Iowa, where topsoil was rated 70% short to very short and subsoil was rated 84% short to very short. In some parts of the State creeks have gone dry due to lack of rain.

The lack of precipitation is causing some stress on crops, especially in the northern third of the State. Corn silking or beyond reached 80%, equal to the 5-year average. Corn in the dough stage reached 21%, three days ahead of normal. Iowa’s corn condition was rated 65% good to excellent. There were scattered reports of corn in the dent stage. Eighty-five percent of soybeans were blooming, 6 days ahead of the five-year average. Over half of Iowa’s soybeans were setting pods, also 6 days ahead of normal. Soybean condition was rated 61% good to excellent. Oats coloring or beyond reached 94%, two days ahead of normal. Forty-eight percent of oats for grain have been harvested, 1 day ahead of the 5-year average. Iowa’s oat condition rated 64% good to excellent.

The second cutting of alfalfa hay reached 83% complete. The third cutting was reported at 8% complete, equal to the 5-year average. Hay condition rated 60% good to excellent. Pasture condition was rated 44% good to excellent. High temperatures and humidity are impacting livestock and some producers are still fighting pinkeye in cows and calves.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

A transition to a less active storm track brought quieter conditions to Iowa during the reporting period with unseasonable dryness statewide; rainfall departures of near an inch were reported in northeastern Iowa. Hazy and warm conditions persisted as a stagnant pattern set up over the Midwest. Near-normal seven-day temperatures were reported in the southwest with positive departures of up to four degrees observed northeast; the statewide average temperature was 75.4 degrees, 1.2 degrees above normal.

Afternoon temperatures on Sunday (19th) stayed in the low to mid-80s across Iowa with partly cloudy skies and variable winds. Conditions into Monday (20th) morning were generally calm with isolated fog and widespread upper-level haze from western wildfire smoke observed over the Midwest. Temperatures ranged from the mid-50s northwest to mid 60s southeast with a statewide average low of 61 degrees, just two degrees below normal. Similar conditions continued into Tuesday (21st) with extremely isolated showers producing light rain in northern and eastern Iowa; only a few stations reported rainfall with a gauge near Center Point (Linn County) collecting 0.25 inch. Overnight lows stayed in the mid to upper 60s as another small area of light rain moved over northern Iowa. A southerly wind shift into Wednesday (22nd) allowed daytime highs to reach into the mid-80s across much of Iowa as gradual warming through the end of the week began. Skies remained clear overnight with a brilliant sunrise above a smokey horizon on Thursday (23rd). Sunshine and gusty southerly winds boosted highs into the upper 80s and low 90s through the day.

Cloud cover increased across northwestern Iowa in advance of a low-pressure system moving through the Dakotas into Minnesota. The southern flank of the system brought showers through northern Iowa into Friday (24th) morning before dissipating in northeastern Iowa a few hours later. Rain totals were light with under 30 stations reporting measurable amounts; Sibley (Osceola) observed 0.24 inch while Everly (Clay County) only reported 0.01 inch. Partly cloudy skies gradually cleared in southeastern Iowa as a weak cold front dropped south across the state producing northerly winds and slightly lower humidity. Even with the passing boundary, high temperatures remained in the upper 80s and low 90s with a statewide average high of 90 degrees, six degrees above normal. As variable winds built-in overnight, a wide range of morning temperatures was reported at 7:00 am on Sunday (25th); Stanley (Buchanan County) observed 57 degrees, two degrees below average, while 74 degrees was reported at Keokuk Lock and Dam (Lee County); this reading was seven degrees above average.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no accumulation at most of Iowa’s reporting stations to 0.64 inch at Swea City (Kossuth County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.02 inch while the normal is 0.93 inch. Corning (Adams County) and Sioux City Airport (Woodbury County) observed the week’s high temperature of 96 degrees on the 24th, on average 11 degrees above normal. Spencer Municipal Airport (Clay County) reported the week’s low temperature of 54 degrees on the 19th, nine degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of July 12 – July 18, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig commented today on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“The majority of Iowa received rain this past week, which is critically important as cornfields are tasseling,” said Secretary Naig. “Unfortunately, with the precipitation came periods of severe weather. Preliminary estimates indicate 26 tornadoes touched down on Wednesday, which is the third highest daily count on record.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Variable precipitation across Iowa resulted in 4.3 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending July 18, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Days suitable ranged from just 1.6 days in southeast Iowa to 5.3 days in the north-central area. There were scattered reports of crop damage due to hail and high winds. Field activities included hauling grain, applying fungicides and insecticides, and harvesting hay and oats.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 6% very short, 27% short, 62% adequate and 5% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 15% very short, 37% short, 46% adequate and 2% surplus.

Producers reported crops responded well to recent rains while indicating more rain is needed. Corn silking or beyond reached 60%, one day ahead of the 5-year average. Corn in the dough stage reached 6%, three days ahead of normal. Iowa’s corn condition was rated 68% good to excellent. Seventy-five percent of soybeans were blooming, 6 days ahead of the five-year average. Thirty percent of soybeans were setting pods, 4 days ahead of normal. Soybean condition was rated 66% good to excellent. Oats coloring reached 85%, 2 days ahead of normal. Almost one-quarter of oats for grain has been harvested, one day ahead of the 5-year average. Iowa’s oat condition improved mariginally to 63% good to excellent.

The second cutting of alfalfa hay reached 63% complete, 3 days behind the 5-year average. There were reports of producers starting on their third cutting of hay. Hay condition rated 59% good to excellent. Pasture condition was rated 45% good to excellent. Some livestock producers were supplementing hay where grass is short, and there were scattered reports of pinkeye in calves.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

The first half of the reporting period saw an active weather pattern including a tornado outbreak, though most of the tornadoes were on the weaker side. Much of Iowa’s eastern half observed above-average rainfall with some southeastern stations measuring two inches above normal; western Iowa experienced below normal rainfall. Unseasonably cool conditions also blanketed Iowa with the statewide average temperature at 70.6 degrees, 4.4 degrees below normal.

Showers continued to stream into Iowa’s southeastern corner on the backside of a low-pressure system for most of Sunday (11th) with three stations in Bloomfield (Davis County) reporting totals between 1.39 inches to 1.82 inches; amounts quickly tapered off to below 0.50 inch northwest. Overnight lows fell into the mid to upper 50s over much of the state’s northwestern half, where skies were clear. Monday (12th) was a cooler than average day with highs in the upper 70s northwest to low 70s southeast where clouds were still present. Overcast conditions persisted in eastern Iowa into Tuesday (13th) morning with dense fog reported at several stations across the state. Morning lows showed quite the range, from the mid to upper 60s east to mid-50s west, where skies were clearing. Winds shifted to a southwesterly direction through the day with highs in the upper 70s and low 80s with partly sunny conditions. Showers and a few storms pushed into western and central Iowa before dissipating during the late evening hours. A broad area of thunderstorms moved into northwestern Iowa around 3:00 am on Wednesday (14th), which would turn out to be a significant weather day. The first wave of rainfall was heavy across northern and eastern Iowa, along with some strong to severe thunderstorms; these storms did not use up all of the atmospheric instability allowing a second, and much stronger area of severe supercell thunderstorms to form in central Iowa during the afternoon. Within a stretch of four hours, several supercells produced tornadoes from Sac City (Sac County) to Canton (Jones County). Most of the tornadoes were rated EF-1 but a strong EF-3 tornado produced crop and property damage along a 10-mile stretch through Lake City (Calhoun County); wind speeds were estimated between 135-145 mph. Preliminarily, there were 26 tornadoes across Iowa, the third-highest count for a day since records started in 1980. Thankfully, no injuries or fatalities were reported.

Moderate rainfall continued over Iowa’s southern third through Thursday (15th) as the sluggish system continued east. Clouds gradually cleared with winds shifting to the northwest and daytime temperatures remaining in the low to mid-70s. Rain totals for the event were heaviest in central and eastern Iowa where pockets of one to three inches were reported with over 80 National Weather Service co-op stations measuring an inch or more; Maxwell (Story County) observed 4.40 inches while the statewide average was 1.11 inches. Wildfire smoke from Oregon filtered into the region Friday (16th), lending to hazy skies and striking sunsets through the weekend. Afternoon conditions were seasonal with temperatures in the low 80s under a westerly wind. Overnight lows into Saturday (17th) dipped into the upper 50s and low 60s as mostly sunny skies persisted through the day. Daytime temperatures again were seasonal with variable winds statewide. Upper-level haze continued into Sunday (18th) as morning lows remained in the low to mid-60s.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of July 5 – July 11, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“This past week’s widespread rainfall brought much-needed relief to farmers as the crop enters an important period in the growing season,” said Secretary Naig. “Forecasts continue to show promising chances of rain and seasonal temperatures in the week ahead.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Much needed rainfall limited farmers to 4.2 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending July 11, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. There were scattered reports of crops lying flat due to strong winds and hail. Field activities included hauling grain, applying fungicides and harvesting hay and oats.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 9% very short, 31% short, 56% adequate and 4% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 16% very short, 40% short, 42% adequate and 2% surplus. Districts in northwest Iowa reported subsoil moisture conditions as 78% percent short to very short while subsoil levels in southeast Iowa rated 87% adequate to surplus.

Widespread precipitation helped with stress on crops and forages. Corn silking or beyond reached 21%, two days behind the 5-year average. There were scattered reports of corn reaching the dough stage. Iowa’s corn condition improved slightly to 66% good to excellent. Fifty-six percent of soybeans were blooming, 5 days ahead of the five-year average. Fifteen percent of soybeans were setting pods, 5 days ahead of normal. Soybean condition improved to 65% good to excellent. Oats headed or beyond reached 97% with 72% turning color, three days ahead of normal. Ten percent of oats for grain has been harvested, two days ahead of the 5-year average. Iowa’s oat condition improved to 62% good to excellent.

The second cutting of alfalfa hay reached 50% complete, one day behind the 5-year average. Hay condition rated 57% good to excellent. Pasture condition was rated 43% good to excellent. There was little stress on livestock this past week although a few producers reported some pinkeye in cattle.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

A welcome shift in the storm path brought much-needed precipitation statewide over the reporting period along with a few days of severe weather. A majority of the state’s reporting stations observed above-average rainfall with parts of southern Iowa measuring amounts from one to three inches above average. With clouds and rain present, temperatures were generally seasonal with cooler conditions in the west; the statewide average temperature was 71.8 degrees, 2.6 degrees below normal.

Clear skies and southerly winds greeted Iowans through Sunday (4th) afternoon as daytime highs ranged from the low to mid-90s north to mid-80s southeast. After Independence Day fireworks fizzled out during the early morning hours, a narrow line of thunderstorms pushed into north-central Iowa, dissipating by sunrise as morning temperatures dropped into the low 70s. A handful of stations reported rain with Northwood (Worth County) measuring 0.70 inch. Monday (5th) was another warm and muggy day as upper 80s and low 90s were recorded across Iowa; the statewide average high was 90 degrees, seven degrees above normal. A thin line of strong thunderstorms with locally heavy downpours formed across extreme northern Iowa later in the evening before dying out very early on Tuesday (6th) morning. Sioux City (Woodbury County) reported 0.01 inch while Sanborn (O’Brien County) observed 0.85 inch. The first of multiple low-pressure systems began moving through Iowa during the day, bringing sporadic thunderstorm activity over Iowa’s northern third. The low’s attendant cold front swept across the state overnight into Wednesday (8th) providing widespread and locally heavy rain in western Iowa. Over 20 stations reported an inch or more with Manning (Carroll County) observing 2.47 inches. The front continued through Iowa before exiting the eastern border before midnight. Overnight lows were cooler behind the front, from the mid-50s northwest to mid 60s southeast. Rain totals reported at 7:00 am on Thursday (8th) highlighted several pockets of 0.50 inch and more in southern and eastern Iowa with general totals of a few tenths at other stations; Centerville (Appanoose County) and Osceola (Clarke County) both measured totals above two inches. Another disturbance brought severe thunderstorms to northwestern Iowa around midnight with scattered hail reports. Heavy rainfall was also observed in the stronger cells; a small sliver of stations from Plymouth to Carroll counties observed totals above 1.50 inches; Remsen (Plymouth County) dumped out 2.01 inches. Widespread totals in the state’s western half ranged from 0.25 inch to an inch with a statewide average of 0.32 inch.

Showers and thunderstorms continued across central Iowa into Friday (9th) morning as a potent low pressure system approached southwestern Iowa. A severe-warned discrete supercell thunderstorm fired over Webster County and raced southeast through the Des Moines (Polk County) metro area before dissipating in south-central Iowa. The cell produced golf to tennis ball-size hail from Woodward (Dallas County) to Carlisle (Warren County), shredding tree leaves, snapping corn stalks and defoliating soybean fields along a 70-mile path; Woodward reported three-inch hailstones while an observer in Beaverdale (Polk County) collected 3.25-inch hail. Additional waves of strong and severe thunderstorms formed throughout the evening in southeastern Iowa and then later in the night over western Iowa, persisting across much of Iowa’s southern half into late Saturday (10th) morning. Rain totals from the previous 48-hours were highest in southern Iowa with local amounts of 2.00 to 4.00 inches; Chariton (Lucas County) observed 4.13 inches. Iowa’s northern half saw a gradient from a few tenths of an inch to more than an inch farther south; the statewide average total was 0.91 inch. As the strong disturbance pushed east, rainfall continued through the day as storms refired in western Iowa, with a stronger line of storms moving into central Iowa during the evening. Stubborn showers sat over southeastern Iowa as the system slowly moved out on Sunday (11th) morning. As with the last several days, beneficial rains were poured out of gauges across much of western, central and southeastern Iowa, generally between 0.25 inch to 1.25 inches. Slow-moving storms in Lyon and Sioux counties brought localized totals above 2.50 inches over 24 hours.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from 0.14 inch at Waterloo Municipal Airport (Black Hawk County) to 4.80 inches in Adair (Adair County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 1.89 inches while the normal is 0.79 inch. Rock Rapids (Lyon County) observed the week’s high temperature of 97 degrees on the 5th, 12 degrees above normal. Estherville Municipal Airport (Emmet County) reported the week’s low temperature of 48 degrees on the 8th, 12 degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of June 28 – July 4, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“Near-normal temperatures and generally dry conditions persisted across Iowa this past week with warmer daytime highs during the Fourth of July weekend,” said Secretary Naig. “As corn tassels in the coming weeks, forecasts show good chances of rainfall over much of the state, which would be beneficial for drought conditions and pollination.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report
Apart from Southeastern Iowa, little to no precipitation allowed farmers 5.7 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending July 4, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Field activities included spraying post-emergence herbicides and harvesting hay.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 14% very short, 36% short, 48% adequate and 2% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 18% very short, 45% short, 34% adequate and 3% surplus. Moisture levels vary widely as subsoil moisture levels in northwest Iowa rated 84% short to very short while levels in southeast Iowa rated 84% adequate to surplus.

Spotty rains benefitted crops but farmers reported more moisture is needed, especially in the northern two-thirds of the State. Across Iowa, there were scattered reports of corn silking. Iowa’s corn condition rated 62% good to excellent. Thirty-nine percent of soybeans were blooming, 6 days ahead of the five-year average. Five percent of soybeans are setting pods, 5 days ahead of normal. Soybean condition was rated 59% good to excellent. Oats headed or beyond reached 94% with 50% turning color, 4 days ahead of normal. There were scattered reports of oats for grain being harvested. Iowa’s oat condition rated 55% good to excellent.

The second cutting of alfalfa hay reached 30% complete, 1 day behind the 5-year average. Hay condition rated 54% good to excellent. Pasture condition was rated 39% good to excellent. Producers reported heat-stressed livestock. Some producers had to start supplemental feeding.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

The end of June and first week of July brought more seasonal temperatures across much of Iowa with warmer conditions reported over the Fourth of July weekend; the statewide average temperature was 74.0 degrees, 0.9 degree above normal. While not as active as the previous reporting period, measurable rain fell at a majority of Iowa stations. Even with measurable rainfall, most of the state reported precipitation departures from 0.50 inch to over 1.00 inch at northern Iowa stations.

Spotty showers and storms popped up over northern Iowa through Sunday (27th) afternoon as a disturbance pushed into the region. Clouds and isolated dense fog were observed into Monday (28th) morning with temperatures ranging from the low 60s northwest to low 70s southeast. Additional showers and thunderstorms formed in northwestern and southern Iowa into the evening, producing locally heavy totals with slower cells in southern Iowa. Morning rainfall totals on Tuesday (29th) showed isolated amounts above an inch at multiple stations and general totals below 0.50 inch; a Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network (CoCoRaHS) observer in Bloomfield (Davis County) emptied 1.75 inches. With clouds and rain persisting across southeastern Iowa, afternoon highs remained in the mid-70s while low 80s were reported farther north. Sluggish and very isolated thunderstorms popped from west-central Iowa into the northeast corner during the late afternoon and evening hours producing locally heavy downpours at a handful of stations; Perry (Dallas County) observed 1.78 inches while Monona (Allamakee County) reported 2.14 inches. Overnight temperatures into Wednesday (30th) remained warm under cloudy skies in southern Iowa, where readings stayed in the upper 60s and low 70s; northwestern Iowa experienced upper 50s under clear skies. Sunshine and afternoon highs in the low to mid-80s prevailed across Iowa’s northern three-quarters as a stationary front parked near the Iowa-Missouri border, producing clouds and moderate rain into the evening; the showers dissipated after the sunset.

Rainfall totals above an inch were observed at 7:00 am on Thursday (1st) in Clarke County and in Iowa’s southeastern corner; Morning Sun (Louisa County) measured 2.01 inches while two stations in Lee County reported 1.64 inches and 1.72 inches, respectively. Winds shifted to the northeast with partly cloudy conditions behind the front and afternoon temperatures in the low to mid-80s. Under the control of a high-pressure system over the Midwest, mostly clear skies remained through the overnight hours into Friday (2nd) with morning lows dipping into the low to mid-60s. Daytime highs pushed into the upper 80s northwest to low 80s southeast. Clearing skies and calm winds allowed overnight temperatures to drop into the low 50s in northeastern Iowa. Winds shifted to a southerly direction through Saturday (3rd)  as the high-pressure center propagated east. With southerly flow and sunshine, afternoon conditions were warmer than average as temperatures climbed into the mid to upper 80s with several 90 degrees readings. Unseasonably warm temperatures persisted across northwestern Iowa into Sunday (4th) with positive departures of up to eight degrees above normal; Sioux Center (Sioux County) reported 70 degrees, 8.4 degrees above average.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no accumulation at multiple Iowa stations to 4.30 inches at a rain gauge near Harper’s Ferry (Allamakee County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.39 inch while the normal is 0.98 inch. Several stations observed the week’s high temperature of 90 degrees on the 3rd, on average six degrees above normal. Elkader (Clayton County) reported the week’s low temperature of 52 degrees on the 3rd, eight degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of June 21 – June 27, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“An active weather pattern shifted into the Midwest last week bringing several days of widespread and beneficial rainfalls,” said Secretary Naig. “The rain came just when moisture-stressed corn and soybeans needed it. Unfortunately, severe thunderstorms caused crop damage in parts of western and central Iowa, as well as flash flooding across southeastern Iowa. The forecast shows additional chances of rain and milder temperatures are expected over the next week.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Much needed precipitation limited Iowa farmers to 3.9 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending June 27, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Field activities included spraying post-emergence herbicides and harvesting hay.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 12% very short, 30% short, 52% adequate and 6% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 18% very short, 42% short, 37% adequate and 3% surplus. While precipitation fell across the State during the week, amounts received varied widely with northwest Iowa still reporting over two-thirds of topsoil moisture short to very short. In contrast, districts in the southern one-third of Iowa rated 60% or more of subsoil moisture adequate to surplus.Farmers reported crops benefitted from the rain but more moisture is needed, especially in the northern two-thirds of the State. There were scattered reports of damaging hail and high winds throughout Iowa. Iowa’s corn condition rated 60% good to excellent. Soybean emergence was virtually complete. Across the State, 19% of soybeans were blooming, 6 days ahead of the five-year average. There were scattered reports of soybeans setting pods. Soybean condition was rated 58% good to excellent. Oats headed or beyond reached 84% with 23% turning color, 4 days ahead of normal. Iowa’s oat condition rated 57% good to excellent.

The second cutting of alfalfa hay reached 7% complete, 4 days behind the 5-year average. Wet conditions slowed progress in some areas. Hay condition improved to 55% good to excellent, 6 percentage points above last week. Pasture condition also improved slightly to 40% good to excellent. Some feedlots were muddy after recent rainfalls.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Several waves of showers and thunderstorms brought measurable rainfall statewide during the reporting period along with multiple days of severe weather. Parts of southern and northeastern Iowa experienced heavy rain which led to localized flash flooding. Portions of northwestern Iowa continued to miss out on higher totals. In the presence of rain and more cloud cover, temperatures were cooler than normal with a statewide average temperature of 70.3 degrees, 2.3 degrees below normal.

An area of widespread rainfall associated with a low-pressure center continued west to east across Iowa through Sunday (20th) afternoon as clouds cleared and daytime heating commenced over central Iowa. As temperatures rose into the low 80s with an unstable atmosphere ahead of a cold front, strong to severe storms formed along the boundary. There were several reports of severe hail and high winds, though the story of the day was an EF-1 rated tornado that caused structural damage at a farm in Pella (Marion County). Rain totals at 7:00 am on Monday (21st) indicated heavier rainfall from stronger thunderstorms between Waterloo (Black Hawk County) and Dubuque (Dubuque County) with over 30 stations reporting above one inch; a gauge in Winthrop (Buchanan County) measured 2.40 inches. Afternoon temperatures were pleasant, in the upper 60s and low 70s, with gusty northerly winds and mostly sunny skies. Overnight lows into Tuesday (22nd) dropped into the upper 40s and low 50s. As a warm front lifted across Iowa, severe and discrete supercell thunderstorms formed during the evening hours from northwestern Iowa into central Iowa producing hail sizes ranging from pea to golf balls. Though narrow, the length of the hail damage swaths were relatively long, producing thousands of acres of shredded corn and defoliated soybeans. Moderate rain also fell over Iowa’s central northwest to southeast one-third with totals above 0.50 inch at a majority of stations; Montezuma (Poweshiek County) measured 2.55 inches with the statewide precipitation averaging 0.43 inch.

Sunshine and southerly winds helped boost afternoon temperatures into the mid to upper 80s on Wednesday (23rd), producing widespread atmospheric instability. Within this unstable environment, a line of strong thunderstorms moved across Iowa’s southern two-thirds before pushing out of southeastern Iowa late morning on Thursday (24th). Partly to mostly sunny conditions persisted through early evening as a strong disturbance moved along the Iowa-Missouri border, bringing isolated severe storms in southwestern Iowa; a weak tornado was observed near Prescott (Adams County). In the presence of abundant atmospheric moisture, thunderstorms in southeastern Iowa produced rainfall rates between two to three inches per hour; Eldon (Wapello County) reported 7.21 inches with 32 stations observing over two inches. Daytime temperatures on Friday (25th) varied from the upper 70s and low 80s with partly cloudy skies and winds out of the south. Showers and thunderstorms developed across Iowa’s northern half during the afternoon with heavy rain reported in the northeast. Storms pushed into western Iowa as another disturbance re-fired shower and thunderstorms across the state into Saturday (26th). Morning conditions were muggy with lows in the mid-60s to low 70s. Widespread rainfall persisted in northern Iowa as a cold front swept through during the late afternoon hours forcing isolated thunderstorms in eastern Iowa. Two-day rain totals reported at 7:00 am on Sunday (27th) were highest in northern Iowa with isolated measurements of two to four inches; Sac City (Sac County) observed 4.53 inches while Dakota City (Humboldt County) reported 3.29 inches with a statewide average at 0.64 inch. Morning fog also formed under calm conditions.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from 0.27 inch in Sheldon (O’Brien County) to 8.10 inches in Cedar Rapids (Linn County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 2.13 inches, almost double the weekly normal of 1.09 inches. Airports in Sioux City (Woodbury County) and Spencer (Clay County) observed the week’s high temperature of 93 degrees on the 23rd and 24th, respectively, on average nine degrees above normal. Several stations reported the week’s low temperature of 40 degrees on the 22nd, on average 20 degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of June 14 – June 20, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“Iowans have experienced one of the driest starts to June on record. Timely and beneficial rain fell across parts of the state this weekend bringing some relief after a long stretch of hot and dry days. Rainfall totals were not enough to make up for the precipitation deficits that have accumulated over the past year,” said Secretary Naig. “The silver lining is that forecasts show a cooler and wetter pattern setting up over the next week as we enter a critical period for crop development.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

With only spotty rains across most areas of the State, farmers had 6.0 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending June 20, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Field activities included spraying post-emergence herbicides, side-dressing nitrogen, and harvesting hay.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 25% very short, 39% short, 35% adequate and 1% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 23% very short, 46% short, 31% adequate and 0% surplus.

Crops showed signs of stress from the lack of precipitation and high heat. Farmers reported corn curling and ground cracking in some areas. Iowa’s corn condition rated 56% good to excellent, 7 percentage points below the past week. Soybean emergence was 96% complete, 1 week ahead of the 5-year average. Across the State, 7% of soybeans were blooming, also 1 week ahead of normal. There were scattered reports of soybeans setting pods. Soybean condition declined to 57% good to excellent. Oats headed or beyond reached 74% with 13% turning color, 1 week ahead of the 5-year average. Iowa’s oat condition rated 54% good to excellent.

The first cutting of alfalfa hay reached 95% complete, 9 days ahead of normal. There were scattered reports of farmers completing a second cutting. Hay condition continued to fall to 49% good to excellent, 6 percentage points below last week. Pasture condition also continued to drop this week to 37% good to excellent. Heat and continued dry conditions are stressing livestock.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Through the middle of the month, much of Iowa experienced the driest start to June on record as unseasonably warm temperatures and low relative humidity gripped the state. The statewide average temperature was 75.6 degrees, 4.8 degrees above normal. With drought conditions persisting across Iowa, a shifting storm track brought much-needed rainfall to most of Iowa’s reporting stations along with severe weather, though precipitation deficits of up to 1.25 inches were reported in northeastern Iowa; only portions of southern Iowa reported above-average rainfall.

Afternoon temperatures on Sunday (13th) reached into the low to mid-90s with variable winds under a sunny sky. Overnight lows remained unseasonably warm, ranging in the low 60s to low 70s. Isolated, light showers pushed into northwest Iowa early on Monday (14th) as temperatures moderated from the previous day, generally in the 80s with a few passing clouds and a light breeze. With a large-scale high-pressure dome parked over the Midwest and low dew points, morning lows into Tuesday (15th) ranged from the 50s northwest to low 60s southeast. Dry air and sunshine allowed temperatures to rise into the upper 80s and low 90s with reports of spotty haze in northeastern Iowa. Widely scattered thundershowers developed in western Iowa before sunrise on Wednesday (16th) as winds shifted to the south through the day boosting afternoon highs into the low 90s west to mid-80s east. Additional storms, some strong to severe, fired in northwestern Iowa during the late evening hours producing hail and strong winds from Buena Vista County south to Audubon County. Rain totals reported on Thursday (17th) showed widespread rainfall across a swath of western Iowa with lighter totals east as showers and thunderstorms moved through central and southern Iowa; Anita (Cass County) reported 0.78 inch while Manning (Carroll County) observed 0.96 inch with general accumulations of a few tenths of an inch at a majority of stations experiencing rain. Afternoon conditions were sweltering across much of Iowa with several stations reporting triple-digit temperatures; the statewide average high was 95 degrees, 14 degrees above normal.

A low-pressure system propagating across northern Iowa produced stronger thunderstorms just before midnight and through Friday (18th) morning. Additional showers formed during the day as the atmosphere over southern Iowa destabilized into the evening hours, partially due to afternoon temperatures reaching into the 80s under clear skies and higher humidity. Severe thunderstorms formed in this environment with several large hail and straight-line wind reports south of Interstate 80; 2.50-inch diameter hail was reported near Lake Red Rock (Marion County) while severe straight-line winds flattened corn around Milton (Van Buren County). Rain totals at 7:00 am on Saturday (19th) were heaviest near the Iowa-Missouri border with almost 30 stations measuring an inch or more; six stations in Davis County reported more than two inches with a gauge in Drakesville dumping out 3.54 inches. Another strong low-pressure system pushed across Iowa overnight into Sunday (20th) producing widespread and much-needed rainfall across most of Iowa with only 15 stations receiving no rain. The statewide average rainfall was 0.40 inch with Little Sioux (Harrison County) observing 2.10 inches; nearly 20 stations reported over an inch of water.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no accumulation at a few Iowa stations to 3.56 inches in Mediapolis (Des Moines County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.68 inch while the normal is 1.32 inches. Little Sioux (Harrison County) observed the week’s high temperature of 104 degrees on the 17th, 20 degrees above normal. Elkader (Clayton County) reported the week’s low temperature of 49 degrees on the 15th, nine degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of June 7 – June 13, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“Unseasonably warm temperatures and limited rainfall led to an increase in drought conditions across the state,” said Secretary Naig. “Early planted crops are starting to show moisture stress, and the short-term forecast shows only minor chances of precipitation. We’re working with other state agencies, ISU Extension and Outreach and farmers to continue monitoring the situation.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Continued dry conditions allowed farmers 6.6 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending June 13, 2021 according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. In addition to planting, field activities included spraying post emergence herbicides, side dressing nitrogen, and harvesting hay.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 24% very short, 46% short, 30% adequate and 0% surplus. The percentage of topsoil moisture rated short to very short increased from 39% to 70% over the week ending June 13. Subsoil moisture levels rated 21% very short, 50% short, 29% adequate and 0% surplus. Subsoil moisture conditions in northwest, north central, west central, central and south central Iowa rated close to 80% short to very short.

Across the State, farmers saw signs of crop stress in fields due to lack of precipitation and high heat. Corn emergence is nearly complete except for some re-planted fields. Iowa’s corn condition rated 63% good to excellent, 14 percentage points below the previous week. Statewide, soybeans emerged reached 93%, 9 days ahead of the 5-year average. Soybean condition rated 61% good to excellent, 12 percentage points worse than last week. There were scattered reports of soybeans blooming. Oats headed reached 56%, 3 days ahead of normal. Across Iowa, oats are starting to turn color. Iowa’s oat condition rated 57% good to excellent.

The first cutting of alfalfa hay reach 87% complete, 6 days ahead of normal. Hay condition fell to 55% good to excellent. Pasture condition dropped to 41% good to excellent. High temperatures were stressful for livestock.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship
Sweltering temperatures were the story across Iowa during the reporting period as long-term and very dry conditions persist over portions of the Midwest. The statewide average temperature was 77.8 degrees, 8.6 degrees above normal. Precipitation deficits continue to accumulate through the first half of June, which is climatologically the wettest month of the year for Iowa. Measurable rain only fell on a few days last week, contributing to an increase in abnormally dry and drought conditions in Iowa.

Clear skies and southerly winds boosted Sunday (6th) afternoon temperatures into the low 80s south to the low 90s northwest. Under stable atmospheric conditions, overnight lows remained unseasonably warm, only dropping into the upper 60s and low 70s across portions of Iowa. Partly cloudy skies on Monday (7th) limited warming through the day, though afternoon highs still pushed into the mid 80s south to sporadic low 90s in the north. Tuesday (8th) saw variable winds build in as afternoon highs continued the trend of above-average warmth. Very spotty thundershowers popped up in eastern and southern Iowa with limited rain amounts, though some downpours were reported; a rain gauge in Camanche (Clinton County) observed 0.91 inch. Isolated showers and thunderstorms again formed in eastern and central Iowa during late afternoon on Wednesday (9th) with three stations in Story County reporting between 0.53 inch and 0.87 inch. Overnight lows into Thursday (10th) remained in the low 70s statewide under generally clear skies. Hot temperatures returned in the afternoon as highs jumped into the low 90s south to mid 90s north with a statewide average high of 94 degrees, 14 degrees above normal.

An organized system of thunderstorms called a mesoscale convective system (MCS) propagated into western Iowa during Friday (11th) morning. Slow moving thunderstorms brought measurable rainfall to Iowa’s western half with amounts above 0.50 inch reported at several stations, though most stations observed totals under a few tenths of an inch; Greenfield (Adair County) measured 1.20 inches from slower moving thunderstorms. Scattered thunderstorms also developed in eastern Iowa ahead of a cold front with very spotty accumulations. Behind the front, relatively cooler and drier air pushed into the state. Overnight conditions were partly cloudy with northerly winds as temperatures varied from the upper 50s northwest to low 70s southeast. Saturday (12th) was warm but coupled with lower relative humidity behind the cold front. While winds shifted from a northernly to westerly direction, sunny skies warmed temperatures into the upper 80s with morning lows retreating to the upper 50s and low 60s. Overnight lows into Sunday (12th) were more seasonal at some stations but mostly warmer than normal; the statewide average low was 64 degrees, five degrees warmer than climatology.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no accumulation at several Iowa stations to 1.97 inches at Bellevue Lock and Dam (Jackson County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.18 inch while the normal is 1.12 inches. Rock Rapids (Lyon County) observed the week’s high temperature of 99 degrees on the 10th, on average 19 degrees above normal. Chariton (Lucas County) reported the week’s low temperature of 49 degrees on the 13th, eight degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of May 31 – June 6, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“After a relatively cool end to May, above-average temperatures arrived at the end of last week, which will help push the crops along,” said Secretary Naig. “The forecast shows warm temperatures and limited chances of rain so we’re continuing to keep a close eye on the drought conditions.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Dry conditions and warming temperatures meant farmers had 6.2 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending June 6, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. In addition to planting, field activities included spraying post-emergence herbicides, side-dressing nitrogen, baling cover crops and harvesting hay.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 7% very short, 32% short, 59% adequate and 2% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 12% very short, 34% short, 53% adequate and 1% surplus. Subsoil moisture conditions in northwest, west-central, central and south-central Iowa were rated over 50% short to very short.

Some producers in the upper two-thirds of the state re-planted corn and soybeans due to frost damage that occurred in late May. Corn emergence reached 96%, 9 days ahead of the 5-year average. Iowa’s corn condition rated 77% good to excellent. At 98%, nearly all of Iowa’s soybean crop has been planted, almost 2 weeks ahead of normal. Statewide, soybeans emerged reached 86%, 9 days ahead of the 5-year average. Soybean emergence in southeast Iowa is slightly behind with over one-quarter of the soybean crop yet to emerge. Soybean condition rated 73% good to excellent. Oats headed reached 37%, 4 days ahead of normal. Iowa’s oat condition rated 68% good to excellent.

Iowa farmers took advantage of the week’s dry weather and completed 41% of the first cutting of alfalfa hay during the week ending June 6 to reach 58% complete, 2 days ahead of normal. Hay condition rated 62% good to excellent. Pasture condition rated 53% good to excellent. Some stress on livestock due to high temperatures was reported.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

The first week of meteorological summer brought warmer conditions across much of Iowa with a statewide average temperature of 69.9 degrees, 3.7 degrees above normal. Dryness also persisted with a southwest to east-central swath of the state reporting no measurable rainfall. Statewide precipitation deficits were well over an inch with smaller departures in the northwest.

Rain showers dissipated into the afternoon hours on Sunday (30th) as a weak disturbance pushed eastward through Iowa. Afternoon temperatures were in the upper 50s northwest to upper 60 southeast where sunny skies prevailed. Foggy conditions were reported in southern Iowa early on Monday (31st) as overnight lows dropped into the upper 40s and low 50s. Rainfall reports from the previous 24 hours were generally light and located across Iowa’s northwestern third; pockets approaching 0.50 inch were found along the Iowa-Nebraska border and in north-central Iowa with totals around or below 0.25 inch elsewhere. Daytimes highs on Memorial Day were near seasonal for some parts of Iowa, though southern Iowa observed low to mid-60s. Light showers formed in southeastern Iowa early on Tuesday (1st), along with a line of thundershowers later in the day in northern Iowa, which produced heavier totals in Chickasaw County. Under light southerly winds, temperatures reached into the upper 70s with partly cloudy skies. Overnight lows into Wednesday (2nd) remained in the mid-50s with light and variable winds. Conditions during much of the day were pleasant, with highs in the upper 70s and low 80s as a dry pattern set up across the state.

Dry, westerly winds and sunny skies helped push temperatures into the low 80s on Thursday (3rd) as high pressure built in over the region. Winds shifted to a southerly direction overnight into Friday (4th), with dew points rising in response to more atmospheric moisture streaming north. Under stable and warm conditions, temperatures reached into the mid-90s in northwestern Iowa while the upper 80s persisted in the east. Clear conditions continued into Saturday (5th) with morning lows in the mid to upper 60s, up to fourteen degrees above average. With a lack of overnight cooling, afternoon highs climbed into the 90s, producing the warmest day of the season thus far; the statewide average high was 91 degrees, 13 degrees warmer than normal. Starry skies and a light southerly wind continued into Sunday (6th) morning along with very warm temperatures. Decorah (Winneshiek County) observed a morning low of 70 degrees, 14 degrees above normal, while the statewide average low was eight degrees above normal at 65 degrees.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no accumulation at many Iowa stations to 0.53 inches near New Hampton (Chickasaw County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.06 inch while the normal is 1.17 inches. Several western Iowa stations observed the week’s high temperature of 97 degrees on the 4th and 5th, on average 18 degrees above normal. Chariton (Lucas County) reported the week’s low temperature of 34 degrees on the 31st, 19 degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of May 24 – 30, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“Cooler weather and overcast skies have slowed some corn and soybean growth,” said Secretary Naig. “Near-freezing temperatures over the weekend may have affected some crops across portions of northern and eastern Iowa. However, we expect warmer conditions this week, which should accelerate crop development.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Beneficial rains helped stimulate crop growth and cool, cloudy conditions allowed needed moisture to stay in the soil during the week ending May 30, 2021 according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Below normal overnight temperatures, primarily in low-lying areas, resulted in scattered reports of frost. Statewide there were 3.4 days suitable for fieldwork during the week. In addition to planting, field activities included spraying, side dressing and chopping cover crops.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 1% very short, 14% short, 76% adequate and 9% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 10% very short, 28% short, 58% adequate and 4% surplus.

Corn planting is virtually complete. Corn emergence reached 87%, 5 days ahead of the 5-year average. Iowa’s corn condition rated 81% good to excellent. Ninety-three percent of the soybean crop has been planted, 12 days ahead of normal. Farmers in southeast Iowa have just over one-quarter of their soybean crop remaining to be planted. Soybeans emerged reached 72%, 9 days ahead of the 5-year average. Iowa’s first soybean condition rating of the season showed 0% very poor, 1% poor, 23% fair, 60% good and 16% excellent. Oat emergence is nearly complete with 21% of oats headed, 5 days ahead of normal. Iowa’s oat condition rated 70% good to excellent.

Seventeen percent of the State’s first cutting of alfalfa hay has been completed, 2 days behind the 5-year average. Iowa’s hay condition was rated 62% good to excellent. Pasture condition improved to 54% good to excellent. There was little stress on livestock although some feedlots remain muddy.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

May’s final full week brought several days of cloud cover to Iowa with slightly cooler than normal temperatures blanketing the state; the statewide average temperature was 60.8 degrees, 2.9 degrees below normal. Measurable rain also fell over Iowa, though totals were still below average for this time of year with 0.50 inch to 1.00 inch deficits observed in portions of southern Iowa.

Spotty showers popped up across eastern Iowa through the afternoon and evening hours on Sunday (23rd) as daytime temperatures pushed into the low 80s south to mid-80s northwest; conditions remained in the upper 70s over the northeast where clouds were present. Rainfall was generally under a few tenths of an inch, though two stations near Coralville (Johnson County) measured 1.15 inches and 1.28 inches, respectively, from a heavier cell. Clouds cleared the state around midnight but returned as a disturbance moved into western Iowa. Spotty showers formed in eastern Iowa over the morning hours of Monday (24th) and persisted for several hours. Daytime highs remained in the upper 70s and low 80s with a southerly wind and partly sunny skies. Additional showers moved into northwestern Iowa along the border with South Dakota and Minnesota; five rain gauges in Lyon County collected from 0.61 inch to 1.15 inches from the heavier showers. With a warm air mass situated over the Midwest, overnight lows into Tuesday (25th) were very warm, remaining in the upper 60s, with a 71-degree reading at Clinton (Clinton County). Temperatures were up to 15 degrees above average with a statewide average low of 66 degrees, 13 degrees warmer than normal. In advance of a strong cold front, afternoon temperatures reached into the low to mid-80s and sunny skies, leading to atmospheric instability. As the front advanced into central Iowa, strong and some severe thunderstorms fired in the evening, quickly losing strength as the sunset; 1.25-inch hail was reported in Des Moines (Polk County).

Winds shifted to a northerly direction behind the front as clouds cleared on Wednesday (26th). Pleasant conditions persisted with 70s observed over much of Iowa. Clouds increased west to east as a low pressure system pushed into southwestern Iowa early on Thursday (27th) morning streaming additional showers across the region. The disturbance cleared Iowa’s northeastern corner later in the afternoon as cooler air rushed in behind. Under cloudy skies and northerly winds, overnight lows retreated into the low 40s. Event rainfall totals observed at 7:00 am on Friday (28th) showed nearly 50 stations picking up an inch or more with a gauge near Fort Madison (Lee County) measuring 2.40 inches; the statewide average rainfall was 0.57 inch. Daytime highs did not deviate much from morning, only breaking into the upper 40s and low 50s, well below normal for the end of May. Overnight temperatures into Saturday (29th) were at or below freezing at several northern and eastern Iowa stations with the remaining stations in the mid-30s and low 40s; the statewide average low of 37 degrees, 13 degrees below normal. Afternoon conditions were generally sunny with low to mid-60s and variable winds. Clouds again increased into Sunday (30th) as rain showers moved into northwestern Iowa with Spencer Municipal Airport (Clay County) reporting 0.49 inch at 7:00 am.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from 0.14 inch at Beaconsfield (Rinngold County) to 3.05 inches near Fort Madison. The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.89 inch while the normal is 1.08 inches. Several stations observed the week’s high temperature of 87 degrees between the 24th and 26th, on average 13 degrees above normal. Elkader (Clayton County) reported the week’s low temperature of 29 degrees on the 29th, 22 degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of May 17 – 23, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“A notable shift in the weather brought warmer and wetter conditions across much of Iowa last week as many farmers wrapped up planting,” said Secretary Naig. “Cooler temperatures have led to emergence issues in some areas, but warmer weather forecasted for this week should really push the crop along.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Persistent precipitation limited opportunities for farmers to plant corn or soybeans during the week ending May 23, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Statewide there were just 2.4 days suitable for fieldwork during the week. Where possible, field activities included planting and spraying.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 3% very short, 15% short, 71% adequate and 11% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 11% very short, 29% short, 54% adequate and 6% surplus.

Planting of Iowa’s expected corn crop is nearly complete at 97%, two weeks ahead of the 5-year average. Corn emergence reached 75%, 5 days ahead of normal. Iowa’s first corn condition rating of the season showed 0% very poor, 1% poor, 21% fair, 64% good and 14% excellent. Eighty-nine percent of the soybean crop has been planted, 15 days ahead of normal. Soybeans emerged jumped 29 percentage points during the week, to 53%, 9 days ahead of the 5-year average. Farmers in south-central and southeast Iowa still have at least 20% of their soybean crop to plant but some areas may need a few days to dry out enough to allow fieldwork to resume. Ninety-six percent of the oat crop has emerged and 8% of oats have headed. Iowa’s oat condition rated 62% good to excellent.

Six percent of the State’s first cutting of alfalfa hay has been completed. Iowa’s hay condition rating rose to 59% good to excellent. Pasture condition improved to 49% good to excellent. Warmer temperatures and rain have promoted good pasture and hay growth. Overall, livestock conditions are good, however, some producers reported muddy feedlots. Some cows and calves have been turned out on grass.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

A significant shift in the jet stream pulled moisture from the Gulf of Mexico into the Midwest bringing much-needed rainfall across the state during the reporting period. A northward bulge in the atmospheric circulation pattern also broke a streak of cooler than normal temperatures as Iowa experienced unseasonably warm conditions; the statewide average temperature was 67.6 degrees, 4.2 degrees above normal.

Dreary conditions persisted across southern Iowa through Sunday (16th) afternoon as rain showers propagated west to east. Daytime temperatures pushed into the low 70s in northwestern Iowa where the sun was shining as opposed to the upper 50s and low 60s where clouds were present. Rain totals reported at 7:00 am on Monday (17th) were highest south of Interstate 80 with widespread totals above 0.50 inch; Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow (CoCoRaHS) gauges in Creston (Union County) and College Springs (Page County) measured 1.18 inches. Showers remained across southeastern Iowa into the early afternoon as overcast skies blanketed the state with temperatures in the mid-60s to low 70s. A low-pressure center over Missouri streamed showers into eastern Iowa overnight into Tuesday (18th) with morning lows in the upper 50s and low 60s and an easterly wind. Rain continued across much of Iowa’s eastern third into the nighttime hours as winds shifted to a southerly direction. A warm front lifted north over Iowa early Wednesday (19th) ahead of another disturbance that brought a complex of showers in western Iowa. As the day progressed, more showers and a few thunderstorms moved south to north through Iowa, bringing widespread rainfall to a majority of reporting stations. Even with cloud cover, a warmer air mass pushed temperatures into the low 70s north to upper 70s south, creating muggy conditions. Rain totals were generally above a tenth of an inch with pockets of 0.50 inch to 0.75 inch in southwestern and northwestern Iowa; several rain gauges in Dickinson County reported over an inch with the statewide average rainfall at 0.28 inch.

With adequate moisture flowing into the Midwest, rain continued over Iowa through Thursday (20th) with a swath of 0.50 inch to 1.50 inches from the southwest through north-central Iowa. A discrete thunderstorm spawned a weak tornado over northwestern Dallas County during the evening with heavy downpours in certain locations; no damage was reported. Over 20 stations reported an inch or more with Boone (Boone County) picking up 2.14 inches. Overnight lows into Friday (21st) remained unseasonably warm under cloud cover and southerly winds; temperatures stuck in the mid to upper 60s with a statewide average low of 64 degrees, 13 degrees above normal. Rain lingered in eastern Iowa until the disturbance pushed out of the state. Clearing skies allowed temperatures to climb into the low 80s at some stations in northwestern Iowa. Another system propagating across western Missouri brought additional rainfall over portions of Iowa through Saturday (22nd) before dissipating as the sunset. Daytime highs ranged from low 80s northwest to mid 70s southeast where rain was present. Event totals reported on Sunday (23rd) morning were generally light though southeastern Iowa had pockets of higher amounts with Salem (Henry County) observing 0.66 inch.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from 0.14 inch at Rock Valley (Sioux County) to 3.20 inches in Clarinda (Page County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 1.24 inches while the normal is 0.99 inch. Sibley (Osceola County) and Spencer Municipal Airport (Clay County) observed the week’s high temperature of 86 degrees on the 22nd, on average 14 degrees above normal. Estherville (Clayton County) reported the week’s low temperature of 42 degrees on the 17th, five degrees below normal.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of May 10 – 16, 2021

On Monday, May 10, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“Farmers are approaching the end of the planting season and the earliest planted corn and soybeans are emerging,” said Secretary Naig. “While much of the state received rainfall last week, it wasn’t enough precipitation to improve the widespread drought conditions. The second half of May is projected to be warmer and wetter, and we need to see consistent rainfalls in the months ahead.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Most of Iowa received some precipitation during the week ending May 16, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Statewide there were 4.8 days suitable for fieldwork during the week. Much of Iowa continues to need additional precipitation. Normal temperatures would also aid crop development. Field activities included planting, spraying, and applying anhydrous and dry fertilizer. Cleaning of terraces and fence rows was also reported.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 7% very short, 27% short, 61% adequate and 5% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 12% very short, 36% short, 48% adequate and 4% surplus. Nearly one-quarter of west-central Iowa’s subsoil moisture level continues to be rated very short.

Planting of Iowa’s expected corn crop is winding down at 94% complete, almost 2 weeks ahead of the 5-year average. Only farmers in west-central Iowa have over 10% of their corn crop left to plant. During the week ending May 16 corn emergence jumped 30 percentage points to 52%, 4 days ahead of normal. Eighty-three percent of the soybean crop has been planted, 18 days ahead of the five-year average. Farmers in southeast Iowa have approximately one-third of their soybean crop left to plant. Twenty-four percent of the expected soybean crop has emerged, 1 week ahead of normal. Eighty-eight percent of the oat crop has emerged with some reports of oats headed. Iowa’s oat condition rated 61% good to excellent.

Iowa’s hay condition rating was 54% good to excellent. Some farmers have started their first cutting of alfalfa. Pasture condition rated 42% good to excellent. No problems with livestock were reported.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Unseasonably cool temperatures persisted across Iowa during the reporting period with negative departures of up to eight degrees observed in the state’s southeast corner; the statewide average temperature was 52.7 degrees, 7.4 degrees below normal. Late spring showers and thunderstorms also developed over much of Iowa, with the highest rain totals occurring in the southeast, though for this time of year, drier than normal conditions were reported at all Iowa observing stations.

As the potent low-pressure system pushed east of Iowa, partly cloudy skies prevailed through Sunday (9th) with afternoon highs in the upper 50s and low 60s under light, variable winds. Overnight temperatures dipped into the 40s as a weak disturbance moved through eastern Iowa, shifting winds to a northeasterly direction on that side of the state. Rain showers developed over eastern Iowa early on Monday (10th) with very light totals where rain fell. As the patten cleared and a dome of high pressure took hold over the Midwest, skies cleared with light northerly winds overnight into Tuesday (11th) morning. Lack of cloud cover and a colder air mass allowed temperatures to fall below freezing in portions of northern Iowa, while mid-40s were observed across southern Iowa; the statewide average low was 36 degrees, 11 degrees below normal. Mostly sunny skies remained across Iowa through the day with highs in the upper 50s and lower 60s, cooler than what is expected for mid-May. As the stars became visible, calm conditions allowed temperatures to drop back into the upper 30s and low 40s with light variable winds. At sunrise on Wednesday (12th), conditions remained calm and clear with a light southerly wind. Afternoon highs warmed into the mid-60s statewide, leading to a pleasant day for Iowans.

Light southerly winds built-in overnight into Thursday (13th) with temperatures staying in the upper 30s and low 40s. Sunny skies allowed temperatures to climb into the mid to upper 60s. Clouds increased through early morning Friday (14th) in advance a low-pressure center over the Dakotas, producing showers in western Iowa during the late morning. The area of rainfall pushed into central Iowa and persisted across eastern Iowa into the evening. Scattered showers reformed over Iowa’s eastern half into Saturday (15th) with totals reported at 7:00 am highest from central Iowa into the southeast corner; a rain gauge in Prole (Warren County) measured 1.16 inches. General amounts where showers persisted ranged from 0.25 inch to 0.75 inch; the statewide average was 0.21 inch. A secondary disturbance moving through northern Iowa along with warm daytime highs forced showers and thunderstorms to fire during the afternoon and evening hours. Some storms were strong with heavy downpours; a severe thunderstorm produced large hail, with a diameter of 1.75 inches, in Fayette (Fayette County). The line of thunderstorms dissipated into the evening hours with foggy conditions observed overnight, given higher dew points and low temperatures in the 50s. Rain totals reported on Sunday (16th) morning were mostly a few tenths of an inch, though several stations reported over 0.50 inch; Keokuk Lock and Dam (Lee County) measured 1.01 inches while Grundy Center (Grundy County) observed 1.40 inches.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no rainfall at a handful of northern Iowa stations to 1.49 inches in Grundy Center. The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.37 inch while the normal is 0.79 inch. Sioux City Airport (Woodbury County) observed the week’s high temperature of 79 degrees on the 15th, seven degrees above normal. Estherville Municipal Airport (Clayton County) reported the week’s low temperature of 26 degrees on the 11th, 18 degrees below normal. Four-inch soil temperatures were in the upper 50s southeast to near 60 northwest as of Sunday.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of April 26 – May 2, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Condition report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“The weather over the past several days provided a great window for farmers to plant,” said Secretary Naig. “Now we need some rain, especially in the northern parts of the state, to help push the crop along. Short-term outlooks are promising with the potential for cooler and wetter days ahead.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Planting of corn and soybean crops accelerated during the week ending May 2, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Statewide there were 6.3 days suitable for fieldwork for the week due to limited precipitation. Other field activities such as applying anhydrous and dry fertilizer were sporadic, due to strong winds.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 17% very short, 38% short, 45% adequate and 0% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 14% very short, 44% short, 42% adequate and 0% surplus. Dry conditions are a concern. Iowa farmers were able to plant almost half of the State’s expected corn crop during the week ending May 2 for a total of 69% planted, 9 days ahead of the 5-year average. With the week’s warmer temperatures, there were scattered reports of corn emerged.

Iowa farmers planted over one-third of the expected soybean crop during the week ending May 2 for a total of 43% planted, 12 days ahead of normal. Ninety-five percent of Iowa’s expected oat crop has been planted, 2 days ahead of last year and 10 days ahead of the 5-year average. Statewide 51% of the oat crop has emerged, 3 days ahead of average.

Pasture condition rated 41% good to excellent. Reports were received of slow growth due to lack of moisture. No livestock problems were reported.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Unseasonably dry conditions persisted across Iowa during the reporting period with departures nearing an inch below average at multiple stations statewide. Only portions of extreme southeast Iowa reported above-average rainfall. Warm and windy conditions were also observed on multiple days with parts of western Iowa experiencing temperatures up to 10 degrees warmer than normal; the statewide average temperature was 62.0 degrees, 8.0 degrees above normal.

A disturbance moving through the Midwest brought showers across northern Iowa in the late morning hours on Sunday (25th) with rain exiting eastern Iowa in the evening. Strong southeasterly winds built-in as a low-pressure system approached from the west. Rain totals reported at 7 a.m. on Monday (26th) were highest in the northwestern corner with Sanborn (O’Brien) and Spirit Lake (Dickinson) observing 0.35 inch; totals tailed off south and east where rain gauges collected a few tenths of an inch. With a strong southerly wind persisting under mostly sunny skies, afternoon highs pushed into the mid to upper 80s in southwestern Iowa while cloud cover held temperatures in the 60s and 70s over northern Iowa. Morning lows on Tuesday (27th) remained unseasonably warm over the state’s southern half, generally in the low to mid-60s with upper 40s under cloud cover towards the Iowa-Minnesota border. A center of low pressure pushing through Iowa shifted winds to a northerly direction from the west to east during the day leading to quite a range of temperatures; low 50s were reported behind the low in northwestern Iowa and low to mid 80s behind the warm front in southern Iowa. Showers formed across western Iowa as the disturbance propagated over the region. Showers and a few thunderstorms continue to pop up through most of Wednesday (28th), leading to higher totals in southeastern Iowa as the system moved east. Event rain totals reported at 7 a.m. Thursday (29th) was highest in the state’s southeast corner with over 20 rain gauges collecting an inch or more of new rainfall; several stations in Appanoose, Davis and Lee counties observed more than 1.50 inches.

Behind the system, skies began to clear with a light northerly breeze and near-seasonal afternoon highs in the low to mid-70s. Skies remained generally clear with a few cumulus clouds passing through northern Iowa as the moon set Friday (30th) morning.  Temperatures climbed back into the 70s with variable winds, leading to a very pleasant day statewide. Overnight lows into Saturday (1st) remained warm, ranging from the mid-50s south to low 60s north. Blustery winds out of the southwest and clear skies led to the warmest temperatures of the season with mid to upper 90s in northern Iowa and mid-80s in southern Iowa; the statewide average high was 87 degrees, 20 degrees above normal. As the sunset, winds gradually died down under starry skies into Sunday (2nd) morning with observed lows in the upper 50s and low 60s.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no accumulation at several stations across Iowa to 1.72 inches at Rathbun Dam (Appanoose County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.18 inch while the normal is 0.89 inch. Spencer Municipal Airport (Clay County) reported the week’s high temperature of 97 degrees on the 1st, 31 degrees above average. Elkader (Clayton County) reported the week’s low temperature of 24 degrees on the 26th, 15 degrees below normal. Four-inch soil temperatures were in the low to mid-60s statewide as of Sunday.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of April 19 – 25, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Conditions report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“We’ve seen improvement in drought conditions across western Iowa,” said Secretary Naig. “Colder temperatures and some late-season snow slowed farmers down last week. However, recent weather patterns have allowed more farmers to get into the fields and a warm and windy forecast should ramp up field activities in the coming days.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Below normal temperatures during the week ending April 25, 2021 delayed planting for some farmers but as the weekend neared, planting accelerated according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Statewide there were 5.6 days suitable for fieldwork during the week. Field activities for the week included applying anhydrous and dry fertilizer, tilling fields and planting.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 6% very short, 28% short, 64% adequate and 2% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 10% very short, 35% short, 54% adequate and 1% surplus.

Despite hesitancy due to cold soil temps, 20% of Iowa’s corn crop has been planted, one day behind the 5- year average. Some farmers chose to plant soybeans with 6% of the crop planted, 3 days ahead of normal. Eighty-three percent of Iowa’s expected oat crop has been planted, 3 days ahead of last year and 6 days ahead of the 5-year average. Statewide 29% of the oat crop has emerged, 3 days ahead of average.

Pasture condition rated 45% good to excellent. Calving is reportedly going well. Despite pasture and hay being slow to grow, cattle are on pastures.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Although not unusual for this time of April, late-season measurable snow fell on multiple days during the reporting period. Even with measurable precipitation at a majority of the state’s reporting stations, unseasonable dryness was observed statewide. Colder than average conditions persisted through Iowa with temperatures up to 12 degrees below normal; the statewide average temperature was 41.7 degrees, 11.1 degrees below normal.

Partly cloudy skies remained during Sunday (18th) afternoon with a steady wind out of the west. Afternoon temperatures were generally in the low to mid 60s with a statewide average high of 62 degrees, climatologically normal for the date. A cold front swept through the state overnight into Monday (19th) bringing much cooler temperatures. Behind the front, rain switched over to snow during the morning hours with a rain and snow mix persisting over much of Iowa’s western half and along the Iowa-Missouri border. Light rain and some snow remained across southeastern Iowa on Tuesday (20th) morning with a majority of Iowa’s stations reporting a temperature below 32 degrees. Event snow totals reported at 7:00 am were generally under a half of an inch, though 10 stations reported an inch or more; Little Sioux (Harrison County) measured 2.7 inches while Sibley (Osceola County) reported 4.0 inches. Daytime temperatures rebounded into the mid to upper 40s with the statewide average high of 45 degrees, 18 degrees below normal. Iowa experienced another frosty morning on Wednesday (21st) with a vast majority of thermometers falling below 28 degrees, leading to a late-season freeze. With the sun shining and a southerly wind, warmer afternoon temperatures were observed, from the upper 50s to low 60s across the state.

High pressure built into the region Thursday (22nd) as southerly flow pushed daytime highs into the upper 50s and low 60s under sunny skies. Overcast conditions developed overnight into Friday (23rd) holding temperatures in the mind to upper 40s with some spotty light rain showers in western Iowa. Southerly winds increased over the late morning hours as a weak low pressure system sluggishly moved across northern Iowa, shifting winds to a northerly direction from west to east through the early morning hours on Saturday (24th). Starry skies were reported in the southern quarter of the state, while clouds remained over the rest of Iowa as the low’s attendant cold front propagated southeast. Lows reported at 7:00 am ranged from the upper 30s to low 40s with very light rain totals across southeastern Iowa. Clouds cleared in the west through the morning hours and sunny conditions advanced east through the evening. Daytime highs reached the low 50s north to low 60s south, still four to ten degrees below average. Clouds redeveloped in western Iowa ahead of disturbance into Sunday (25th) morning with reports of light rain and some snowflakes in the northwest corner; Orange City (Sioux County) observed 0.08 inch at 7:00 am.

Weekly precipitation totals ranged from no accumulation at many stations in west-central and eastern Iowa to 0.37 inch in Sibley (Osceola County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.05 inch while the normal is 0.80 inch. Sioux City Airport (Woodbury County) and Davenport Municipal Airport (Scott County) reported the week’s high temperature of 67 degrees on the 23rd and 24th, respectively; this reading is on average one degree above normal. Sibley and Stanley (Buchanan County) reported the week’s low temperature of 16 degrees on the 21st, on average 20 degrees below normal. Four-inch soil temperatures were in the low 40s northeast to mid 50s southwest as of Sunday.

 

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of April 12 – 18, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Conditions report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“After soil temperatures warmed for several days, some farmers were able to start planting this past week,” said Sec. Naig. “With late-season snowflakes flying in parts of the state today and freezing temperatures expected early this week, farmers should continue to be cautious about planting.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Snow and abnormally low temperatures meant farmers were not planting row crops for most of the week ending April 18, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Statewide there were 4.7 days suitable for fieldwork during the week. Field activities for the week included applying anhydrous and dry fertilizer, spreading manure, tilling fields and planting.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 6% very short, 23% short, 67% adequate and 4% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 10% very short, 32% short, 54% adequate and 4% surplus.

Although most Iowa farmers continued to wait for warmer temperatures, 4% of Iowa’s corn crop has been planted. Nearly two-thirds of Iowa’s expected oat crop has been planted, 5 days ahead of last year and 6 days ahead of the 5-year average. Statewide 12% of the oat crop has emerged, 2 days ahead of average. There were scattered reports of soybeans planted.

Pasture condition rated 47% good to excellent. Some cattle have already been moved to pasture.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

After a warm first half of April, cooler conditions were observed statewide over the reporting period with temperatures up to six degrees below normal; the statewide average temperature was 44.8 degrees, 4.5 degrees below normal. A less active storm track brought drier than normal readings to rain gauges across the state with departures of up to 0.80 inch in the northeast.

Rain showers finally exited eastern Iowa early in the afternoon on Sunday (11th) as skies continued to clear west to east. Daytime highs ranged from the mid 60s in southwest Iowa to low 50s in the east. Gusty westerly winds built in across the state on Monday (12th) under mostly sunny skies with afternoon temperatures reaching into the mid to upper 50s. Cloud cover increased overnight into Tuesday (13th) with lows hovering in the mid 30s to upper 30s where clouds were present; under clear skies, thermometers in southwestern Iowa registered readings in the low 30s. Windy conditions persisted through Wednesday (14th) as afternoon temperatures remain unseasonably cool; northern Iowa reported highs in the low to mid 40s under cloud cover while sunny skies in the south pushed temperatures into the mid 50s. Morning temperatures reported at 7:00 am on Thursday (15th) were at or below freezing across much of Iowa as a cold front dropped south through the state with the coldest readings in northern Iowa; the statewide average low was 30 degrees, seven degrees colder than normal. Afternoon conditions were generally overcast with a light northwesterly wind and temperatures in the upper 40s and low 50s.

Overnight lows into Friday (16th) remained above freezing across much of northern Iowa where cloud cover was present though some stations in southern Iowa reported readings below 32 degrees. Clouds and a light northerly wind held afternoon temperatures in the mid 40s and low 50s as an upper level disturbance approached from the west. Rain showers pushed into southwestern Iowa during the afternoon hours on Saturday (17th) as chilly conditions persisted across Iowa; temperatures only reached into the mid 40s over the state’s western half. Showers lingered over southern Iowa into Sunday (18th) with 24 hour rain totals reported at 7:00 am across the southern one-third of Iowa ranging from near 0.50 inch west to a little over 0.10 inch east. Morning temperatures were also warmer where rain was falling, generally in the low 40s. Clear skies in eastern Iowa allowed temperatures to fall into the upper 30s.

Weekly rain totals ranged from no accumulation at most of northern Iowa’s stations to 0.42 inch in Randolph (Fremont County). The statewide weekly average precipitation was 0.05 inch while the normal is 0.86 inch. Mount Ayr (Ringgold County) reported the week’s high temperature of 71 degrees on the 11th, 10 degrees above normal. Airports in Marshalltown (Marshall County) and Sioux City (Woodbury County) reported the week’s low temperature of 25 degrees on the 14th, 12 degrees below normal. Four-inch soil temperatures were in the low 50s south to upper 40s north as of Sunday.

 

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of April 5 – 11, 2021

“With spring weather now upon us, farmers across Iowa are looking to get planters into the field,” said Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig in releasing the weekly Iowa Crop Progress and Condition Report. “Rainfall over the last week has been beneficial for the drier parts of the state, though farmers should keep an eye on the forecast, as freezing temperatures are possible over the next few days.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Measurable rainfall fell across the State which allowed Iowa farmers only 3.1 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending April 11, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Fieldwork activities included applying anhydrous and fertilizer, spreading manure, spring tillage and planting oats. There were also scattered reports of corn being planted.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 4% very short, 17% short, 69% adequate and 10% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 12% very short, 28% short, 56% adequate and 4% surplus.

Thirty-seven percent of the expected oat crop has been planted, 4 days ahead of last year and 5 days ahead of the 5-year average. Statewide, 3% of the oat crop has emerged.

Pasture condition rated 3% very poor, 11% poor, 42% fair, 40% good and 4% excellent. Pastures are greening up and starting to grow. Muddy feedlots were reported in the southern part of the state.

In the weekly weather summary provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, it was noted that a transition to an active storm track brought several waves of welcome rainfall across Iowa over the last seven days.

Slow-moving low-pressure systems with persistent, steady rain showers produced totals of up to three inches above normal in southeastern Iowa.  Cloud cover and rain could not keep temperatures down as unseasonable warmth blanketed the state during the reporting period; Iowa’s average temperature was 55.9 degrees, 10.9 degrees above normal.

Sunday (4th) afternoon was pleasant with sunny skies and southerly winds helping temperatures reach into the mid-70s east to mid-80s west. Spotty thundershowers popped up across northeastern Iowa during the late evening ahead of a low-pressure system. The disturbance brought rain showers over the northern half of the state through Monday (5th) afternoon with totals on the order of a few tenths of an inch. Afternoon highs returned to the upper 70s and low 80s as skies cleared and blustery southerly winds persisted. A line of strong thunderstorms pushed into extreme northwest Iowa during late evening and skirted the Iowa-Minnesota border into early Tuesday (6th) morning before dissipating in northeastern Iowa. Scattered showers and thunderstorms re-formed later in the day in advance of a surface boundary moving into western Iowa overnight into Wednesday (7th). As temperatures warmed into the 70s with ample low-level moisture, additional thunderstorms formed in south-central Iowa on the north side of  low-pressure center over northwestern Missouri. The storms, with locally heavy rainfall and small hail, moved north and east through late evening. Thunderstorms in eastern Iowa became stronger with a brief, weak tornado reported near Cedar Rapids (Linn County) that caused damage to several structures.

The disturbance continued to circulate additional waves of showers across the state as it propagated northeast through Thursday (8th). Two-day rain totals were highest across southern and western Iowa, with totals on the order of 0.75 inch to above an inch; multiple stations in south-central Iowa measured over two inches with Murray (Clarke County) observing 2.70 inches. All National Weather Service coop stations reported measurable rainfall with a statewide average of 0.69 inch. The low-pressure center continued to spin through the Great Lakes as rain showers gradually dissipated over Iowa on Friday (9th) morning. Overcast skies remained throughout the day with highs stuck in the mid-50s and a light northwesterly wind. Another center of low pressure propagated from Kansas into Missouri through the overnight hours into Saturday (10th). With a lack of upper-level steering flow, the sluggish low created a persistent rain shield across eastern Iowa. Western Iowa began to clear in late afternoon with temperatures reaching into the upper 50s and low 60s; under cloud cover and rain, eastern Iowa remained dreary and chilly with highs only in the mid to upper 40s. Overnight lows into Sunday (11th) dipped into the 30s in western Iowa while clouds held temperatures within the same range as late Saturday afternoon. Rainfall totals in Iowa’s eastern one-third were generally above 0.50 inch with over 20 reporting 1.00 inch or more; Keokuk Lock and Dam (Lee County) observed 2.76 inches.

Weekly rain totals ranged from 0.28 inch at Decorah Municipal Airport (Winneshiek County) to 4.42 inches Keokuk Lock and Dam. The statewide weekly average precipitation was 1.45 inches while the normal is 0.64 inch. Multiple western Iowa stations reported the week’s high temperature of 86 degrees on the 4th and 5th; on average 29 degrees above normal. Several northwestern Iowa stations reported the week’s low temperature of 28 degrees on the 11th, on average six degrees below normal. Four-inch soil temperatures were in the upper 40s east to low 50s west as of Sunday.

Iowa Crop Progress & Condition

Week of March 29  – April 4, 2021

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today commented on the Iowa Crop Progress and Conditions report released by the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The report is released weekly from April through November.

“With recent warm and dry conditions across the state, many farmers are eager to begin fieldwork with an eye towards planting,” said Secretary Naig. “Farmers should be cautious though as cold snaps and a late spring freeze are possible through the end of April. Chances of rain are also back in the forecast.”

The weekly report is also available on the USDA’s website at nass.usda.gov.

Crop Report

Warm and dry days allowed Iowa farmers 4.3 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending April 4, 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Fieldwork activities included applying anhydrous and fertilizer, spreading manure and planting oats.

Topsoil moisture levels rated 8% very short, 25% short, 64% adequate and 3% surplus. Subsoil moisture levels rated 12% very short, 29% short, 56% adequate and 3% surplus.

Twelve percent of the expected oat crop has been planted, 3 days ahead of last year and 4 days ahead of the 5- year average.

Pastures have started to green. Livestock conditions were generally good and producers report calving is going well.

Weather Summary
Provided by Justin Glisan, Ph.D., State Climatologist, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Several transient weather systems propagated through the Midwest over the reporting period, leading to several days with very gusty winds across Iowa. Unseasonably dry conditions reigned statewide with no National Weather Service coop station observing measurable rainfall. Temperatures varied from above normal west to below normal east with a statewide average temperature of 43.9 degrees, 0.8 degree above normal.

Partly to mostly sunny skies greeted Iowa through Sunday (28th) afternoon. Winds gradually increased and switched from the northwest to the southeast during the late evening hours, in advance of strong low-pressure systems across the Dakotas. Daytime highs ranged from the low 40s east, where more cloud cover was present, to the mid-50s in the southwest. Overnight into Monday (29th), a warm front lifted north through Iowa with very gusty southerly winds pushing afternoon highs into the low to mid-70s. Spencer Municipal Airport (Clay County) observed 76 degrees, 26 degrees above normal; Iowa’s average high temperature was 72 degrees, 18 degrees warmer than normal. Very strong wind gusts were observed statewide with Sioux City Gateway Airport (Woodbury County) recording a 56 mph gust; sustained winds pushed into the 20 to 40 mph range. A strong cold front moved through Iowa on Tuesday (30th) dropping temperatures into a more seasonal range as blustery northwest winds and mostly clear skies persisted into the nighttime hours. Overnight lows reported at 7:00 am on Wednesday (31st) were in the low 20s northwest to low 30s southeast. Mostly cloudy skies were reported over eastern Iowa, holding afternoon highs in the low to mid-30s; Oelwein Municipal Airport (Fayette County) reported a high temperature of 32 degrees while Clarinda (Page County) observed 47 degrees, 10 degrees below normal.

Temperatures remained unseasonably cool on Thursday (1st) as a high-pressure center moved slowly through Iowa producing light and variable winds. Afternoon conditions were generally clear with temperatures in the upper 40s and low 50s. Southerly winds picked back up overnight in advance of another upper-level disturbance; with a very tight pressure gradient across Iowa, wind speeds on Friday (2nd) were in the upper 20s to mid 30 mph range. Under gusty conditions and sunny skies, temperatures rebounded into the upper 60s in western Iowa to the mid-50s east. Overnight lows into Saturday remained above average, generally in the 40s under starry skies. Clear conditions continued through Saturday (3rd) with some high-level cirrus passing through. Temperatures were very pleasant for early April with highs pushing into the low to mid-70s; the statewide average high was 72 degrees, 16 degrees above normal. Overnight lows into Sunday (4th) remained above average with temperatures in the upper 30s and 40s statewide.

While the weekly statewide precipitation normal is 0.69 inch, there was no measurable precipitation reported across Iowa. Sioux City Airport (Woodbury County) reported the week’s high temperature of 78 degrees on the 3rd; this reading was 21 degrees above average. Estherville Municipal Airport (Emmet County) reported the week’s low temperature of 11 degrees on the 1st, which is 19 degrees below normal. Four-inch soil temperatures were in the upper 40s east to mid-50s west as of Sunday.

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