$curWeaInfo.name, $curWeaInfo.state
Current Conditions
0:$curWeaInfo.min AM $curWeaInfo.tz
Dew Point
$curWeaInfo.wdir at $curWeaInfo.wspd mph
$curWeaInfo.bar in. F
$curWeaInfo.visibility mi.
$dailyWea.get(0).sunrise a.m.
$dailyWea.get(0).sunset p.m.
7-Day Forecast
$dailyWea.get($m).high°F / $dailyWea.get($m).low°F
$dailyWea.get($m).high°F / $dailyWea.get($m).low°F
$dailyWea.get($m).high°F / $dailyWea.get($m).low°F
$dailyWea.get($m).high°F / $dailyWea.get($m).low°F
$dailyWea.get($m).high°F / $dailyWea.get($m).low°F
$dailyWea.get($m).high°F / $dailyWea.get($m).low°F
$dailyWea.get($m).high°F / $dailyWea.get($m).low°F
Detailed Short Term Forecast
Issued at 0:$curWeaInfo.min AM $curWeaInfo.tz

Chilly temperatures stall crops

July 31, 2013 | 0 comments


The bottom fell out of the thermometer last week, as temperatures swung from hot to record-setting cold across Wisconsin.

According to the July 29 "Wisconsin Crop Progress Report", daytime highs took a nosedive from the 80s into the upper 50s and low 60s, while overnight lows plummeted into the low 40s in the far north.

Crops were making progress as the week began, the report said, but the cold snap stalled growth for many areas.

"Nothing happened last week with the rain and cool temps. Turn the heat back on," the reporter from Langlade County advised in the document created with input from farm reporters and county ag agents across the state.

The week ended with average temperatures marked 4-7 degrees below normal, just the opposite of the previous week when average temps were 7-10 degrees above normal.

Average highs ranged from 74-78 degrees, while average minimums fell between 53-60 degrees. On July 27, cities across the state marked record low daytime highs.

The pattern of rainfall was haphazard, with some areas getting soaked and others skipped completely. Reported totals ranged from 0.43 inches in Eau Claire to 2.32 inches in Madison.

"We need rain. It is dry in this area," the reporter from Burnett County said. Polk and St. Croix counties reported the same, and the central sands remain short on water.

Hay crops have nearly stopped growing due to the dryness, that reporter said, but some light rain and the week’s cooler temperatures were helping.

Parts of Kewaunee County were also getting very dry and some corn was curling before a good amount of rain fell late in the week. "Most producers saw at least an inch of much-needed rain," the reporter shared. "Now all crops are doing and looking good."

Columbus County got scattered, mostly-welcome rain on Sunday, July 21, with amounts ranging from 0.75-2-plus inches. "Sandy soils are extremely dry and needed rain desperately, but low-lying ground did not need any more moisture yet", the reporter explained.

Grant County welcomed several days of nice rain, while Monroe County got 1.75 inches on July 21, followed by another 0.25 inches. "People are starting to cut oats with the binder and shocking," that reporter shared.

Late plantings coupled with this season’s wide swings in temperature and precipitation have produced enormous variability in crop progress and condition, reporters commented.

Across much of the state, early planted corn is tasseling and silking. It needs regular rain to ensure good pollination, the report pointed out, while late planted corn badly needs additional heat to mature.

With 5.2 days suitable for fieldwork, farmers pushed through 75 percent of second cutting alfalfa and 5 percent of third cutting. However, farmers in Waukesha County were still harvesting first crop hay.

Although yield reports varied, reporters said the second crop has yielded better than the first in most areas. Langlade County reported second crop and new seeding yields and quality were very good.

Dry hay has been hard to make in some areas, including Kewaunee County. "The pattern of sun and rain has been making it nearly impossible to get the hay off without getting rained on at least once," the reporter shared.

While most fields have been harvested and third crop is coming back very well, he noted that any second crop still standing has grown to the point where it is lodged nearly everywhere.

By July 28, corn reached an average height of 68 inches with 43 percent silking, compared to the five-year average of 74 inches on average and 57 percent silked.

In areas of insufficient rainfall, reporters told of corn curling. In Eau Claire County, corn growing on sand is burned. There are various corn heights, depends on when the corn was planted. "There is lots of late-planted corn and beans, the reporter noted.

Soybeans on light soils were also showing stress in some areas.

In Sawyer County, the lack of rain, earlier extreme heat and now cooler temperatures are causing a lot of stress on crops, the reporter said. "We’re seeing more variability," he commented. "Some crops are still looking good; others not so good."

Statewide, 50 percent of the bean crop was blooming and 9 percent was setting pods, compared to the five-year averages of 65 percent blooming and 23 percent setting pods.

The state’s small grain harvest got underway, although reporters said the moisture content was still too high for combining in many areas.

On July 28, oats were marked at 95 percent headed and 8 percent harvested for grain, compared to five-year averages of 100 percent headed and 24 percent harvested.

Most of the harvesting was in the southernmost parts of the state, with the southwest district pulling off 13 percent, the south central district at 17 percent and the east central district at 14 percent, compared to the north central district yet to start and the northwest, north east and southeast districts all at 5 percent.

Baling and harvest for oatlage continued.

Winter wheat was also being harvested for grain across the south, with yield reports ranging from 70-80 bushels per acre. In Grant County, about half the wheat had been taken off.

In Vilas County, where the potato crop has reportedly advanced quite nicely, the grain is starting to mature. "We are very optimistic about the crop potential", the reporter said.

Apples were reportedly looking good, with growers expecting a much better crop than last year. In Kewaunee County, the cherry harvest is underway with most growers reportedly very pleased with the yields. "It will be much better than last year," the reporter predicted.

The weekly "Wisconsin Crop Progress Report" is a cooperative effort of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, and the National Weather Service.

It is compiled at the Wisconsin field office in Madison by state statistician Greg Bussler.

This site uses Facebook comments to make it easier for you to contribute. If you see a comment you would like to flag for spam or abuse, click the "x" in the upper right of it. By posting, you agree to our Terms of Use.

Page Tools