Ag Weather Forum
Bryce Anderson DTN Ag Meteorologist and DTN Analyst

Wednesday 06/04/14

When There's Too Much Rain

Tuesday, June 3, 2014 brought too much of a lot of weather to a big swath of the western Corn Belt. Baseball-size hail, hurricane-force winds and tropical-caliber rainfall hammered crops and flooded big acreages from Nebraska to the mid-Mississippi Valley. The rain amounts--from 3 to 6, 7 inches--were record amounts by a long, long way. Just for one example--in Omaha, 5.30 inches were tallied for the Tuesday June 3 24-hour period--beating the old record of 1.85 inches set back in 1890. That is close to 3 TIMES the old record. As we have seen in other rainfall events over the past few years, record rainfall is blowing completely through old records.

Severe storms cut a damaging swath in much of the western Corn Belt, from central Nebraska through southern Iowa, northern Missouri and into western Illinois.

From pictures that have been sent around, there appear to be quite a few fields in that heavy rain/storm corridor where some hard thinking is going to have to be done. Corn and soybeans have been either hailed out or drowned out. Here we are in early June; what next for these acreages?

The thing is, this one occurrence is likely going to have some company. The next week and a half looks like it is going to remain very active in the central U.S. When you're talking "active" in the weather world, just substitute "stormy" and you've got things described. And, since we are in early summer, "stormy" also implies "heavy" something--whether it's rain, hail, wind, or--as some portions of the western Corn Belt had in this week's storm--all three.

Should this round of stormy conditions maintain this intensity--in different locations--it will be interesting to see how the trade reacts. At this point, the collective opinion is moisture is a benefit to more acres than those that are damaged by a storm, with the trade generally feeling that at some acres are lost to storm damage every year. But, if this gets to be a more-general trend during a good portion of June, there could be some re-assessment on that "rain makes grain" mantra.


Twitter @BAndersonDTN


Posted at 3:54PM CDT 06/04/14 by Bryce Anderson
Comments (3)
It's incredible to even think of getting 7"+ of rain in one night. It's been over five years since we've even had a two inch rain in one day on the SW Kansas farm I live on. It seems like the last number of years we tend to just get 1/2" rains instead of those booming thunderstorms that we used to get. Honestly I can't remember the last time we went to the storm shelter. Living in Kansas severe storm warnings are just a part of life in the spring and summer, but have eluded us out west here of late.
Posted by Brad Niehues at 4:03PM CDT 06/04/14
Gully washers are no good for sure, seems like once a guy gets lined up under these training thunderstorms, there just tons of water falling. I'm thinking the cool wet weather pattern is going to be a reality.
Posted by GWL 61 at 4:18PM CDT 06/04/14
I remember 60 years ago one night we got seven inches of rain. This was back before their wasn't any NRD's. Water everywhere. Then my dad and uncle cutting wheat in the bottom in a big cloud of dust without a cab. Tuesday night while on my way to my storm shelter I look at my weather station and it had about .04 in rain. When I returned about 15 minutes later it had over .90 on it. It does help fill up ponds that have low for two years. Gerhart Bredemeier
Posted by GERHART BREDEMEIER at 8:41AM CDT 06/05/14
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