South America: Wet In Southern Brazil, Slightly Dry In Argentina
During September 2000, rainfall was widespread and frequent across southern Brazil. This rainfall increased soil moisture supplies for summer planting and emergence. However, combined with below normal end of month temperatures, this rainfall slowed wheat maturation and delayed harvesting. Early September rainfall was heaviest across Minas Gerais, Mato Grosso do Sul, Goias, and northern Sao Paulo. During the second half of September, heavy rainfall was prevalent across Parana, Santa Catarina, and Rio Grande do Sul. Temperatures in southern Brazil, oscillated from below normal to above normal during September, beginning the month below normal, becoming progressively warmer than normal by the middle, and ending the month 1 to 3 degrees below normal. On September 26, pockets of frost were likely in the low lying areas of northwestern Rio Grande do Sul, where recorded minimum temperatures ranged from 1 to 2 degrees C.
In central and northern Argentina, very little rain had fallen since the beginning of September. By months end, additional precipitation was needed for winter wheat development, especially in Cordoba and northwestern crop areas. On September 25, minimum temperatures fell at or slightly below freezing (-3 to -1 degrees C) across southern Cordoba, eastern La Pampa, and Buenos Aires, possibly burning back vegetative wheat. Winter wheat was likely entering the flowering stage across the northern wheat belt (central Santa Fe), where minimum temperatures did not fall low enough to cause significant crop damage. In early October, beneficial rain fell throughout central Argentina aiding wheat development and boosting soil moisture for corn and sunflower planting. Northern Argentina, however, dry soils from above normal temperatures and lack of rain delayed cotton planting.
South Asia: Monsoon Retreating On Time Leaving Gujarat Unfavorably Dry
During September 2000, the southwest monsoon started its seasonal withdrawal from Pakistan and northern India. Unfortunately, by mid-September, dryness had expanded to cover broad sections of northwestern, central and coastal southwest India and eastern Pakistan. This dryness, accompanied by above-normal temperatures, caused a further decline in crop conditions for reproductive and filling oilseeds, cotton, sugarcane, and coarse grains. While, during the last half of September, pockets of moderate rain brought relief to drought-stressed oilseeds and cotton in Maharashtra and eastern Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and western Madhya Pradesh remained mostly dry. In contrast, moderate to heavy showers continued across the rice areas of eastern India and Bangladesh. In the south, copious rains during the second half of September, were especially beneficial for immature cotton and oilseeds.
Australia: Warm Dry Weather Causes Concern In Queensland and New South Wales
Most of Australias crop areas were very dry in September, receiving generally less than 10 millimeters of rain per week. Only Victoria and southernmost New South Wales received normal to above normal rainfall last month. The major agricultural districts of southern Queensland and northern New South Wales were dry and temperatures were above normal. While a reduction in winter grain yields is expected, the impact of the dryness was limited by adequate soil moisture following normal August rainfall. The warm dry weather also affected the germination of summer crops, notably sorghum and upland cotton in Queensland, and stressed immature winter crops in northern New South Wales. After receiving light to moderate rainfall during the first week of September, Western Australias weather later turned unseasonably warm and dry, seriously limiting moisture for winter grain development.
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