Corn+Soybean Digest
The chance of excessive spring and summer rains will continue to be higher in parts of the Corn Belt for the foreseeable future with Iowa Illinois and Wisconsin in the bullseye

The chance of excessive spring and summer rains will continue to be higher in parts of the Corn Belt for the foreseeable future, with Iowa, Illinois and Wisconsin in the bullseye.

Rainy future for the Corn Belt

Think Different U.S. farmers are at the cusp of an era in which they can begin to make long-term decisions based on climatological forecasts, says Christopher Anderson, assistant director of the climate science program at Iowa State University. “Farmers aren’t used to having a five- or 10-year forecast to guide their decisions,” Anderson says. “Although we can’t forecast next spring’s weather, we feel confident that the conditions causing higher spring and summer rainfall are likely to continue for at least one to two decades.” He urges farmers to consider addressing the challenge of planting seasons with narrower planting windows. “And if you believe what I say, it makes sense to tighten up drainage management where you haven’t done so already,” he adds.

If you think spring weather has become more unstable – and wetter – in recent years, you’re right. To a lesser extent, the same goes for summer.

Forecasting higher-than-normal rainfall several months in advance is still folly. But from a climatological standpoint, odds are that wet springs and summers are more likely in the years ahead than they have been in the not-so-distant past.

That’s especially true in the west central Corn Belt, with Iowa at the epicenter, says Chri

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