WORLD AGRICULTURAL WEATHER HIGHLIGHTS
September 10, 1999
UNITED STATES: Extreme heat and dryness persisted through August and into early September across the South, stressing pastures and immature summer crops, including cotton and soybeans. Unfavorable dryness also continued across the southern and eastern Corn Belt, although the absense of extreme heat aided corn and soybeans. In contrast, wet weather prevailed from the Southwest to the northern Plains and upper Midwest. Beneficial rain fell in the Northwest, but dry conditions and lightning strikes sparked wildfire activity in California and the Great Basin. Much-needed rain also fell in the northern Mid-Atlantic region, easing the 14-month drought. In the tropics, Hurricane Bret arrived in a sparsely populated area of southern Texas on August 22. Hurricane Dennis brushed the coastal Carolinas on August 29-31, then returned to North Carolina as a tropical storm on September 4-5 with generally beneficial rainfall that eventually spread into the Northeast.
CANADA: Warm, dry weather dominated the Prairies through most of August, creating nearly ideal conditions for dry down of spring grains and oilseeds. In early September, showers hampered Manitoba harvests, while frost in the western Prairies may have caused some crop damage. In eastern Canada, showery weather since early August eased stress on summer crops.
SOUTH AMERICA: In central Argentina, near-normal August rainfall provided beneficial moisture for germinating to vegetative winter wheat, especially in southern Buenos Aires. Additional rain is needed in southern Santa Fe and Cordoba. In southern Brazil, below-normal August rainfall and above-normal temperatures favored citrus and coffee harvesting. Soil moisture remained adequate for reproductive to filling winter wheat.
EUROPE: In August, persistent showers delayed small grain harvesting in northwest Europe, while below-normal rainfall helped harvesting in the northeast. Unseasonably warm,dry weather prevailed across southern Europe, stressing non-irrigated summer crops. Since early September, warm, dry weather improved harvest conditons in the northwest. Showers in eastern Europe slowed crop harvesting but increased topsoil moisture for winter grain planting.
FSU-WESTERN: In August, persistent showers and unseasonably cool weather in northern Russia delayed spring grain harvesting and fieldwork in preparation for planting the 2000 winter grain crop. In Ukraine and southern Russia, periodic heat and dryness continued to stress corn and sunflowers in the filling stage. Since early September, dry weather improved conditions for fieldwork in northern Russia and helped early summer crop harvesting in southern Ukraine.
FSU-NEWLANDS: In Russia, unseasonably cool, wet weather in the northern Urals during August slowed spring grain maturation. Farther east, below-normal precipitation in Western Siberia created a lack of moisture for filling crops. In Kazakstan, precipitation tapered off in August, favoring spring grain maturation and early harvest activities, just beginning by month's end.
SOUTH ASIA: Drought intensified over western India, placing severe stress on Gujarat's groundnuts, cotton, and coarse grains. Rainfall was also erratic over sections of southern India, reducing moisture reserves for summer crops, but conditions could still improve if the southwest monsoon regains strength prior to its withdrawal. Conditions remained generally favorable in the rice areas of central and eastern India and Bangladesh.
EASTERN ASIA: During August, drought continued across the North China Plain, further reducing corn yield prospects. Rain is needed for the upcoming winter wheat planting season. Much above-normal August rainfall boosted moisture supplies across interior southern China, but raised quality concerns for maturing single-crop rice. Above-normal rainfall maintained adequate to abundant moisture supplies for rice across South Korea and Japan. Below-normal August rainfall stressed summer crops in North Korea.
SOUTHEAST ASIA: Sunnier weather due to near- to below-normal August rainfall favored rice development across Thailand and northern and southern Vietnam. Across the Philippines, above-normal August rainfall boosted moisture supplies, but caused local flooding. Above-normal rainfall favored oil palm in peninsular Malaysia and irrigation supplies were adequate for second-crop rice in Java, Indonesia.
AUSTRALIA: Conditions for vegetative crop development were generally favorable across the western and southeastern winter grain belts. Early winter grain and oilseed harvesting was underway in southern Queensland. However, unseasonable rain along sections of the eastern coast kept unharvested sugarcane unfavorably wet.