Argentina: Favorable Soil Moisture in Northern and Central Crop Areas
During much of November 2000, heavy rainfall generally hampered summer crop planting and other fieldwork in Formosa, Chaco, Cordoba, northern and central Santa Fe and Entre Rios. On the positive side, this rainfall provided favorable moisture for filling winter grains as well as already planted summer crops. Generally, 30 - 70 millimeters fell in northern Argentina during the week of November 19 - 25, boosting moisture supplies for cotton, but slowing planting and 40 - 80 millimeters fell in extreme eastern Cordoba, Sante Fe, and Entre Rios, also slowing planting of summer corn, soybeans, and sorghum, and delaying early harvesting of winter grains. During the following week, November 26 through December 2, and up to December 4, moderate to heavy rain (25 - 80 millimeters) continued. That week, isolated torrential showers (175 - 200 millimeters) damaged wheat and resulted in local flooding in central Santa Fe. While it was raining to the north, dry weather from extreme southern Cordoba and Santa Fe southward into Buenos Aires favored summer crop planting and wheat maturation. In southern Buenos Aires, however, topsoil moisture was becoming limited. From December 5 - 10, Argentina has been dry, favoring summer crop planting and winter wheat maturation and harvesting. Country-wide planting progress for corn, sunflower and soybean area at a similar pace to last year and near normal.
Brazil: Showers Provide Adequate Soil Moisture Supplies for Summer Crops
During November 2000, rainfall was widespread and frequent across the major soybean-producing regions of southern Brazil. This rainfall (20 - 80 millimeters per week, with local amounts exceeding 100 millimeters) provided adequate to abundant moisture for germinating crops. Rainfall continued during the first 4 days of December 2000. During December 5 - 10, southern Brazil was favorably dry. This drier weather brought relief from localized flooding in western Minas Gerais and also allowed for continued soybean planting and wheat harvesting countrywide. Temperatures during November were slightly below normal in Rio Grande do Sul and slightly above normal during early December. Elsewhere, temperatures averaged slightly above normal. According to Safras, as of December 8, soybeans were 93 percent planted nationwide, compared with the 5-year average of 85 percent.
South Africa: Recent Rain Favors Corn Establishment
Soaking rain in September 2000 and frequent moderate-to-heavy rainfall in October and November combined to create "practically ideal" soil moisture levels for corn and other summer crop planting and establishment across the Maize Triangle of South Africa. The optimal planting period is from October to early November, although corn planting can last through early January. Later-planted crops, however, face a greater risk of summer heat stress. The important white corn area in North West missed out on much of the September and early October rainfall and was becoming fairly dry, but moderate to heavy rainfall in mid-October and additional scattered showers through early November improved soil moisture for planting. A brief drying trend in mid-November favored planting progress across the Maize Triangle. This was followed by moderate to heavy rainfall each week from November 19 through December 5, which maintained abundant soil moisture for emergence and crop establishment. Temperatures have been seasonable to cool, and overall conditions are better than average.
Return to the Table of Contents[images/pecad_timefooter.html]