Weather Update – January 13, 2023

By Legacy Seeds   |   January 19, 2023

While forecasters are predicting the change to ENSO-Neutral, the impact of La Nina will continue to be felt into spring. Predictions are at 71% that we will move into the neutral phase in the February – March time frame. There’s a 60% chance that El Nino will begin this fall. Our weather friends at Planalytics do not expect significant drought improvement in the Plains states anytime soon. Other drought areas should see relief, especially California which has been experiencing incredible amounts of rain and snow. 

U.S Drought Monitor - January 13, 2023

Many of the California reservoirs that have been at historic lows are now hitting their seasonal averages with expectations they will continue to improve.

In the upper Midwest, we expect January and into the first of February to be warmer than normal, and wet, with occasional shots of Artic air bringing us back to winter conditions, especially towards the end of January. February will be split with cooler temps in the Northwest and warmer with moisture in the East. California will begin to dry out.

March is expected to be in the shift from La Nina to neutral. The Midwest should be warmer than normal and dry, with no significant relief in the Plains.

April will be warmer than normal across the country with average precipitation. If you remember the spring of 2012, we may be experiencing very similar conditions that led to early planting across the country.

The recent precipitation in the Midwest has greatly improved the Mississippi River levels where many of the locks are at seasonal averages and some near flood stage. This improvement is needed if we are to get fertilizer moved into the Midwest by barge prior to planting.

In South America, Brazil will continue to see good growing conditions while Argentina will be hot and dry for the next 30-days at least. Markets will react to rainfall in Argentina, but amounts are expected to be light and scattered. Significant yield loss will be experienced. 

GRACE-based Root Zone Soil Moisture Drought Indicator

Actionable Weather Plans – If next month’s planting forecast predicts anything like spring of 2012, get your supplies in position as soon as possible. The whole US planted in less than 30-days which put a tremendous strain on logistics. Our supply chain has not fully recovered from the Covid issues, and other stressors like early demand could complicate planting.

The challenge for Planalytics will be the difficulty in predicting long-term weather patterns during a transition out of La Nina. Stay tuned for next month’s first planting forecast. 

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