Skip to main content


Showing posts from May, 2023

Persistent Warm Up in Store

Persistent Warm-Up in Store: It appears that after near normal temperatures this week a persistent warming pattern will prevail deep into June. On Tuesday, May 23 Morris, Elbow Lake, Madison, and Moorhead all hit an afternoon high temperature of 90°F, the first reports of 90°F temperature since April 12-13. With the strong warming trend starting this weekend, I am sure more 90°F temperatures will be on the way over the next couple of weeks, promoting much more rapid growth of crops in agricultural fields, and garden crops as well. Be sure to pay attention to watering the garden as the outlook favors drier than normal weather over the next two weeks as well. Up on the Roof: During the infancy of the National Weather Service in the late 19th century, observational networks were established and maintained by the U.S. Army Signal Service. Guidelines were quite stringent for locating instruments in suitable exposures, maintaining and calibrating instruments and filing reports. Failure

Record Rainfall in Some Southern Counties

Record Rainfall in Some Southern Counties: Last Friday I spoke about rapid planting progress across the state by Minnesota farmers, but May 10 through May 14 proved to be one of the wettest 5-day periods for May in history over many agricultural counties in southwestern and south-central Minnesota. Many climate observers in Brown, Watonwan, Redwood, Lyon, Nicollet, and Blue Earth Counties reported from 5 to 9 inches of rainfall over the 5-day period. Some of the long-term daily climate records for rainfall broken during this period included: 2.20 inches at St James and 1.87 inches at Canby on May 11th 3.35 inches at Tracy, 3.04 inches at Lamberton, 2.34 inches at Windom, 2.06 inches at Faribault, and 1.90 inches at Marshall on May 14th. The heavy rains washed out many freshly planted fields, mostly corn but some were recently planted soybean fields. In addition, the heavy rains flushed out a great deal of starter fertilizer. Ditches, creeks, and streams rose dramatically as the he

Good Weather for Farmers

Good Weather for Farmers: Winds have generally diminished from the powerful ones of last month, soil temperatures have warmed into the 50s and 60s F, soils have dried enough to be suitable for planting, and Minnesota farmers are making significant and rapid progress in getting seed in the ground, working 16-20 hour days. Lots of progress on getting this year’s crops planted this week, but this progress will be interrupted Friday through early Sunday by a variety of showers and thunderstorms. Nevertheless, farmers are optimistic that the overall planting season this year will not be as late as it was last year. It looks like a generally warmer and drier than normal weather pattern will prevail after this weekend, and last through the balance of May. With adequate to surplus stored soil moisture from the first few months of the year, soils should be able to support sustained and rapid growth of planted crops even scarce rainfall the rest of the month. With this context farmers shoul

Spring and Planting Season Arrives

Spring and Planting Season Arrives: After a top 20 wet and cool April across Minnesota, the first week of May is trending warmer and drier than normal, providing a huge opportunity for farmers to catch up on their planting, with many of them working 16 to 20 hour days. What little precipitation has occurred this month has been primarily in the non-agricultural areas of far northern Minnesota (Note Ely had over an inch of snow on May 1st). After gale winds to start the month, winds have calmed, skies have cleared and temperatures have climbed to above seasonal normals. Wednesday brought widespread temperatures in the 60s and 79s F statewide, with the higher readings in the Red River Valley. Red Flag warning were also issued for most of Minnesota with near-record low (single digits to teens) relative humidity readings and high fire danger. Then on Thursday afternoon temperatures in the 70s F were more widespread with many southern and western Minnesota climate stations reaching 80°F