Midwest Weekly Highlights - April 10-16, 2013
Significant Precipitation Across Region
Precipitation of at least 1" fell across a majority of the region during the week, with the highest totals of 3" to 5" across northeast Iowa, southeast Minnesota, southern Wisconsin, and central Michigan (Figure 1). The significant precipitation resulted in widespread departures of 200% to 750% of normal (Figure 2). The only areas with near to below normal precipitation during the week were in southern Missouri and portions of northeast Kentucky and southeast Ohio. The above normal precipitation has resulted in streamflows that are significantly above normal across the central Midwest (Figure 3). Just over 480 daily precipitation records were set during the week, with a few monthly records in the mix as well.
Several inches of snow fell across northern Midwest states, with the highest amounts of 10" to 15" in portions of Minnesota and northern Wisconsin (Figure 4). Due to the significant snowfall this week and cold temperatures, snow depths remain significant across the northern Midwest (Figure 5).
There was a strong northwest to southeast gradient in temperature departures, with northwest portions of the region experiencing below normal temperatures and southeast portions with above normal temperatures (Figure 6). The largest departures in the northwest were 9°F to 17°F below normal while the departures in the southeast ranged from 1°F to 9°F above normal. There was a mixture of record highs and record lows in the hundreds of daily temperature records.
Severe Weather Ramps Up
The five southern Midwest states all experienced severe weather throughout the week
(Figure 7). April 10th was the most active severe weather day, with almost 90 hail reports, 4 tornado reports, and 97 wind reports in the Midwest. High wind of 101 mph and 75 mph were reported in Sullivan, MO (Franklin County) and Granite City, IL (Madison County), respectively. In addition, large hail ranging from 2" to 2.5" were found in a few counties across Illinois (Edgar County), Indiana (Delaware, Hamilton, and Marion counties), and Missouri (Franklin County).
The widespread rain across the Midwest has delayed the planting of corn in all nine states. Typically, Kentucky and Missouri have the most corn planted by April 14th, but this year only had 7% and 8% planted as of April 14th, respectively. More details on the status of planting corn across the region are summarized in the table below.
The abundant rainfall this past week has helped reduce the severity of drought in the Midwest after several months of very dry conditions. The April 16th release of the US Drought Monitor shows that the portions of Minnesota and Iowa that were in extreme drought (D3), were upgraded to severe drought (D2) (Figure 8). A small portion of Iowa does remain in extreme drought however. Other portions of Minnesota were downgraded from moderate drought (D1) to abnormally dry.