The drought situation continues to worsen in KELOLAND


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — You can find heat all over KELOLAND these days and the signs of drought stress are becoming more obvious by the day if you take the time to look.

From the road, this cornfield in Lincoln County looks fine.

It’s green, the seeds germinated quite well, and it’s about a foot tall. But step out of the car, and you’ll quickly see the problem in the first few rows of the field. This spot is competing for moisture with some nearby trees and it’s easy to see the corn isn’t doing well during the heat of the afternoon. The plant leaves are rolled to conserve water. There’s still moisture in the ground, but each day of hot weather is taking its toll.

Some of the trees and plants in your yard might be showing stress. It’s too early for leaves to be falling from the trees, but drought stress will cause this to happen.

Check your fruit trees for stress too. I was surprised to see cherries shriveling up and falling off this bush in my backyard.

This crop looked great 2 weeks ago, but not today.

The pumpkin plants are growing, but some of them are wilting in the heat of the day. The root systems of these young plants aren’t able to keep up with moisture demands needed this early in the growing season.

We are anticipating cooler weather early next week and that will slow down the deteriorating drought conditions. But without meaningful rainfall, these pictures won’t be improving.

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