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April showers slow down planting, for now

cold air funnel

The start of April has brought much needed moisture across the Corn Belt, and more is likely on the way. 

Climatologist Eric Snodgrass, chief science fellow at Nutrien Ag Solutions, says the first half of the month should remain wet…

“And we have more systems following it.”  He says, “I think before we get to the middle of this month, there are at least three decently sized low-pressure systems that are gonna roll through the midsection of the United States.”

He says an active Jetstream is the culprit…

I think the coldness out West, with the Rockies being so packed up with snow, the Sierra Nevada so packed up with snow, and the fact that the Pacific jet keeps sending troughs of low pressure over the mountains means that they curl up once they get past the Rockies, they draw on that moisture, and given that there’s plenty of instability in the lower atmosphere, we’re able to just get these things to pop,” he says.

But he tells Brownfield the outlook for spring planting improves…

“Overall, April is going to shape up on the warmer side of things, but volatile until we get out there to about middle of the month and then we could just make a nice break to get the crop going fast,” he says.

Snodgrass says the stormy start to April is also a good reminder to be weather aware this spring. 

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