Cooler weather not ideal for crops


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The race is on to finish crop development before the end of the growing season. Meteorologist Brian Karstens takes a closer look at why each warm day is critical.

The month of September marks the transition to cooler, fall-like weather. But for most in AG country, the need for warm weather is growing by the day.

The reason is simple. We are still lagging way behind normal for the growing season. The corn crop is in the worst shape, in some cases about a month behind normal. The latest crop reports say only 1 percent of South Dakota corn is dented, a key stage of development. The normal number is 53 percent.

Soybeans are in somewhat better shape, but not out of the woods from damage an early frost would bring. Normal highs this time of year are in the upper 70s to near 80. However, in 10 days those numbers fall into the lower 70s for many East River. We still think frosty weather isn’t coming anytime soon.

The active jet stream pattern, however, will keep us wet in the 10-day period. Wet weather is often better for overnight lows, but can be more challenging for daytime highs, depending on what side of the prevailing storm track we spend most of our time.

For now, each mild day makes a difference.

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