May 30, 2024 Climate Outlook

May 30, 2024 5:02 PM

Key Points

  • Drought ends in Iowa after 203 weeks; only areas of D0 (abnormal dryness) remain.
  • Crop progress is still coming along despite continuous rainfall events.

Past Weather

Around 10-15 inches of rain fell across the state between March and May in 2024.

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After 203 continuous weeks of drought existing across the state, now only D0 (abnormally dry) remains. Between March 1 and May 30, 10-15 inches of rain fell across the state, which was around 4-8 inches above average. Consistent above average rainfall allowed drought conditions to diminish. However, active storm systems also made it difficult for field work. Soils have remained consistently wet in many areas, preventing planting or allowing ponding in low-lying areas of the field causing seeds or newly emerged plants to rot.

In the past 7 days, eastern Iowa saw the greatest rainfall totals with nearly 3 inches, while western Iowa only saw as much as 1 inch. Around 1 inch of rain per week is expected at this time of year, so 3 inches is 300% of normal. Active storm systems haven’t only brought rain, but also damaging winds and tornadoes. The system that moved through Iowa on the morning of Friday, May 24, has been classified as a derecho and caused wind damage and several tornadoes were produced.

Planting Update

This week’s NASS crop progress shows 88% of corn acres planted, which is only 4% short of the 5-year planting average. Corn emergence is at 66%, which is also only 4% below the 5-year average for this time. 73% of soybean acres are planted, again only 4% behind the 5-year average, and 42% are emerged. This is an improvement from last week. Considering this spring was one of the top 10 wettest, planting progress and emergence are still coming along nicely.

Climate Outlook

The Weather Prediction Center quantitative precipitation forecast shows 1-2 inches of rain expected across the state in the next 7 days, with greater amounts expected in the western part of the state (closer to 2 inches) and lower amounts in the east (closer to 1 inch).

The 6-10 outlook from the Climate Prediction Center show near normal temperatures and below average chances for precipitation. The 8–14-day outlooks shows temperatures likely leaning below normal, likely around 5 degrees below normal, so there are not concerns for extraordinarily cold temperatures. The seasonal outlook currently shows a slight warm signal and equal chances for above or below average precipitation.

Warm signal across Iowa for seasonal outlook.

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Equal chances for above or below average precipitation.

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