Weekly temperatures averaged as much as 20º F above normal across the Plains and Midwest for the week of April 10-16, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). In fact, temperatures of 100º F and higher could be seen as far north as southern Kansas.
Bottom line, say NASS reporters, the earlier, warmer weather accelerated development of drought-stressed winter grain in the Southern Plains and Southwest, while hampering the emergence of newly planted dry land summer grains.
Conversely, wet weather and below-normal temperatures continue to slow planting in parts of California and the Northwest. Likewise, moderate precipitation cross the Corn Belt held planting behind the normal pace.
For the week ending April 16, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service: Corn -- 9% of the acreage has been planted, which is 4% behind last year and 1% off the normal pace.
Winter Wheat-- 9% was at or beyond the heading stage, compared with 6% last year, and with the five-year average.
Spring Wheat -- 10% of the crop is in the ground, which is 11% behind last year and 6% behind average.
Barley -- 9% of seeding is complete; 10% behind last year and 9% behind average.
Sorghum -- 3% of the acreage is planted, which is 7% ahead of last year and 8% ahead of average.
Oats -- 44% of planting is complete, which is 8% behind last year, but 1% ahead of normal.