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Tue Dec 11, 2012, 09:18 AM

10 Days Out From Winter, Drought Goes On: 25%+ Of 2013 Winter Wheat In P/VP Condition

EDIT

With the Great Plains — from southern South Dakota to the Texas Panhandle — enduring the most desiccated conditions, the agricultural sector is bracing for the hardest blow. Most of the Plains and the Mississippi River Valley had less than a quarter-inch of rain over the past week, according to the Drought Monitor.

The drought expanded across parts of Southeast Texas through central Louisiana in areas that had precipitation shortfalls of 8 to 14 inches over the past three months, the report said.

Just over a quarter of the nation’s wheat crop, planted mostly in September and October, was in poor or very poor condition, according to a report released last week by the United States Department of Agriculture. Those are the worst conditions since the department began keeping records in 1986, said Brad Rippey, a meteorologist with the department.

In Nebraska, where most of the state has been in an exceptional drought, farmers have reported planting their wheat in dry soil with the hope that rain or snow will eventually come and germinate the seeds and allow them to sprout, said Caroline Brauer, a spokeswoman for the Nebraska Wheat Board.

EDIT

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/07/us/season-has-changed-but-the-drought-endures.html

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Reply 10 Days Out From Winter, Drought Goes On: 25%+ Of 2013 Winter Wheat In P/VP Condition (Original post)
hatrack Dec 2012 OP
Nihil Dec 2012 #1
NickB79 Dec 2012 #2
pscot Dec 2012 #4
XemaSab Dec 2012 #5
joshcryer Dec 2012 #3

Response to hatrack (Original post)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 05:10 AM

1. "Those are the worst conditions since the department began keeping records in 1986"

Looks like some real fun coming down the road ...

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Response to Nihil (Reply #1)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 03:44 PM

2. That's really saying something

I was just old enough to have memories of the drought of 1988. They're all bad. What I remember is brown fields, my dad loading the dairy herd onto trucks to sell off, and nothing but dust everywhere.

That year broke my dad as a farmer. Oh, he carried on with the motions for another 20 years, but he never had the same drive, the will to put his heart and soul into it again. He became depressed, abusive, borderline suicidal. I fear for all the farmers out there who've mortgaged all they have against new, expensive farmland and equipment in the past few years just to see it dry up and blow away.

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Response to NickB79 (Reply #2)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 10:40 PM

4. Have you read Tim Egan's book?

The Worst Hard Time is the story of the dust bowl '30s. Of course irrigation changed all that. It can't happen now.

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Response to pscot (Reply #4)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 11:28 PM

5. That was an excellent book

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Response to hatrack (Original post)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 08:39 PM

3. It's going to go well into spring, groundwater is going to be hit hard.

There may be a rebound next summer (as the arctic has one of its last big gasps of life left) but after that long term drought expectations are dire, imo.

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