We all know that the weather is the single most important factor in a successful crop, but it’s also the most unpredictable. That’s been particularly true as of late, since it was seeming like Mother Nature just couldn’t make up her mind. However, it looks like she finally decided what season it is, and, apparently, she wanted to skip spring and go straight to summer.
While it is true that we’ll never know exactly how the weather will pan out, it’s still important to take our best guess and plan accordingly. Iowa State Climatologist Dr. Justin Glisan does much more than just guess- he uses scientific data to make accurate predictions of Iowa’s climatological patterns. One of his main tools is the drought monitor, and he said that, even though it feels like we got a lot of rain in April, it was only slightly wetter than average.
A major concern recently has been whether or not we’ll be able to get in the fields to maximize yield potential for our crops, but with the tropical temperatures we’re seeing in the current forecast, Dr. Glisan said that there should be an excellent window for the planters to get rolling this week.
Fortunately, most farmers should be able to get most, if not all, of their crops planted this week. However, that doesn’t mean we can ignore the weather now. It’s just as important to keep track of the weather conditions as the crops go through their growing cycles. Dr. Glisan provided his weather outlook for the month of May and beyond.
Dr. Glisan added that there’s a chance, however small, that the La Nina pattern sticks around after this winter.
As we move into May and June- the two wettest months of the year- we expect to see some seasonal rain showers. However, even in years with heavier drought conditions, Dr. Glisan said that Iowa farmers have been resilient and have still seen great yields from their crops.
Dr. Glisan said that he’s always available as a resource for Iowa farmers to stay up-to-date on weather patterns.
For more information on Iowa’s weather patterns, visit https://iowaagriculture.gov/climatology-bureau.