Southern Iowa Gets Drier

Jun 27, 2016

Farm fields in central and southeast Iowa remain abnormally dry. Despite weekend rainfalls totaling two-to-three inches in eastern Iowa near Cedar Rapids, some of the state’s driest areas got only about a half-inch. 

Iowa State University Regional Agronomist Megan Anderson’s monitors a 10-county region from Independence to Washington.  That part of Iowa includes counties the National Drought Monitor has listed as abnormally dry or in moderate drought.  She says things are “precarious”.

“Corn leaves were rolling and soybean leaves were sort of flipping over,” she says.  “And I was seeing this as early as ten a.m., corn leaves were already rolling up. That moisture really helped relieve some of that stress that they were under. They weren’t rolling as much then, but they will be again soon unless they get more rain.”

She says the half-inch of rain some parts of the region got isn’t much, and it won’t be long before things are dry again, unless there is more rain. 

Anderson is optimistic that good yields are still possible, depending on the mid-July’s weather.

“That’s really where farmers are going to make a lot of their money, by having a good period for pollination,” she said.

The National Weather Service says the best chance of rain this week comes Wednesday and Thursday.