WORLD AGRICULTURAL WEATHER HIGHLIGHTS
August 12, 1999
UNITED STATES: A late July heat wave brought the highest temperatures in 4 to 11 years across much of the Midwest and Ohio Valley, stressing livestock, pastures, and reproductive summer crops. Record-setting heat overspread the Southeast toward month's end, negating the benefits of late June and early July rainfall that had stabilized crop conditions. In the Mid-Atlantic region, where 13-month moisture deficits topped 18 inches in a few areas, the focus of extreme drought remained centered on an area that included eastern West Virginia, northern Virginia, and Maryland. Drought also intensified across the interior Northwest, where moisture deficits mounted in most areas for the fifth consecutive month. In contrast, a banner start to the summer rainy season across the Southwest improved water supplies and eased long-term drought, but caused localized flooding. In California, below- normal temperatures slowed crop development.
CANADA: Across the Prairies, crop development ranges from 1-4 weeks behind schedule. An unusual cold snap in mid-July reportedly caused some damage to spring grains and oilseeds in the west. Sunny, periodically warm weather since then has improved prospects for haying and spring crop development. In eastern Canada, early-August rainfall brought some relief to corn and soybeans but hampered wheat harvests.
SOUTH AMERICA: In central Argentina, mostly near- to above-normal July rainfall increased topsoil moisture for winter wheat germination. Additional rainfall is needed to eliminate scattered dry pockets in the region. In southern Brazil, near- to above-normal rainfall continued to favor vegetative to reproductive winter wheat. Seasonably dry weather aided coffee and citrus harvesting in Sao Paulo and Minas Gerais.
EUROPE: Relatively dry weather in July promoted rapid winter grain harvesting from England and northern France eastward through Poland. Since August 1, however, showers have slowed harvesting. Near- to slightly above-normal rainfall benefited developing spring-sown crops from northern Spain and central and southern France eastward through Austria. Frequent rains in Hungary, Slovakia, and the Balkans repeatedly interrupted winter grain harvesting and caused localized flooding.
FSU-WESTERN: In July, below-normal rainfall and oppressive heat in southern Russia and Ukraine favored winter grain harvesting but reduced yield prospects for filling spring grains and reproductive corn and sunflowers. Farther north, cool, wet weather in northern Russia hampered winter grain harvesting. In early August, although cooler weather and scattered showers eased heat stress on summer crops in Ukraine and southern Russia, hot weather recently returned to these areas.
FSU-NEWLANDS: In Russia, adequate moisture in July favored spring grains in the northern Urals. Drier weather prevailed over spring grain areas in Western Siberia. In Kazakstan, hot, dry weather overspread the west in July, accelerating spring grain development. Farther east in major spring grain producing areas of north-central Kazakstan, weather conditions remained favorable for crop development.
SOUTH ASIA: The southwest monsoon progressed well during the first half of July, providing most grain, oilseed, cotton, and sugarcane areas with abundant moisture. Since mid-July, however, below-normal rainfall has plagued important oilseed and cotton areas of west-central India, as well as summer crop areas of the southern interior. In the east, flooding has shifted from heavily irrigated locations in Bangladesh and eastern India to India's rainfed rice areas.
EASTERN ASIA: Mostly dry weather from early July to early August reduced rainfed summer crop yield prospects across the North China Plain and southern Manchuria. Near-normal July rainfall favored summer crops and spring wheat in northern Manchuria. Drier weather eased excessive wetness along the northern Yangtze Valley, but above-normal July rainfall likely caused flooding across the southern portions of the Valley. Three tropical systems struck the Korean Peninsula during late July and early August, causing flooding and possible rice damage. In northern Japan, warm, wet weather during July provided average, but not ideal, conditions for rice development.
SOUTHEAST ASIA: Near-normal July rainfall increased moisture supplies for corn and rice across most of Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines. Below-normal showers in northern Thailand and south-central Vietnam, however, reduced irrigation supplies. Excessive showers in early August caused flooding in western Luzon, Philippines. Near- to above-normal rainfall favored oil palm in peninsular Malaysia and seasonable showers favored second-crop rice in Java, Indonesia.
AUSTRALIA: Scattered showers in the western and southeastern winter grain belts have maintained adequate topsoil moisture levels for early wheat and barley development. Cool, dry conditions in Queensland and New South Wales have restricted the vegetative development of winter crops. Along the coast, periods of heavy rain during July kept unharvested sugarcane unfavorably wet.