Cold and wet spring will have impact on agriculture

Staff Writer

Over the next couple of weeks unseasonably cold temperatures, wet conditions and potential snow are likely to have a number impacts across the north central United States, according to the National Weather Service (NWS).

Information from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and U.S. Dept of Agriculture (USDA) describes what they are calling a "major cold and wet spring event" over the next two weeks.

Due to early spring warmth much of the region has experienced growing conditions 1 to 2 weeks early, according to NWS, and are especially vulnerable to freezing temperatures.

Some key points, according to the NWS information, include:

- Freezing temperatures in the Central and Northern Plains may occur in the next two weeks which would impact wheat growth, apple and other fruit tree blooms and home and garden landscaping.

- Chilly air temperatures combined with the possibility of snow may impact planting and livestock. Cold and rain could impact corn planting, seed germination, young calves, soil compaction, soil nutrients and field accessibility.

- Unusually wet conditions may exist for much the Central U.S. April 26-May 3. Cloud cover and moisture could keep soils very cool. Heaviest rains are expected in the southern/eastern corn belt.

- In a 8-14 day outlook, odds favor below normal temperatures for Nebraska.