Even though cooler seasonal temperatures bring less attention to the drought, it certainly hasn’t gone away. The drought is still in place and significant amounts of moisture in the form of rain or snow is needed across much of the Midwest to help lay the foundation for next year’s crop, says Mark Svoboda, National Drought Mitigation Center climatologist. The comments were made Monday in an interview with Mike Adams, host of AgriTalk.
“Overall, we’re still looking at a large areas of the Corn Belt with eight to 12 inch deficits,” Svoboda says. “We would like to get six to eight inches of moisture in the soil profile before next spring. Trouble is that it is the dry time of year and we don’t expect to see a lot of rainfall,” he adds.
Svoboda says that wildfires are still a threat in much of the Corn Belt and that water supplies for communities may be the next challenge developing.
The “snow drought” last winter was a precursor of the 2012 drought, Svoboda says. “Last year, we had some moisture reserve going into the drought while this year the moisture has already been depleted.” The soil profile needs significant rainfall before planting next year, he says. “We would like to see a very rainy or snowy winter this year heading into the 2013 season.”