In the West, widely scattered showers are affecting Colorado, where flood recovery efforts continue. Meanwhile, much cooler air is overspreading the Northwest, accompanied by scattered showers. On September 15, Washington led the nation with 43% of its intended winter wheat acreage planted.

On the Plains, widely scattered showers are benefiting newly planted winter wheat in Montana and the Dakotas. On September 15, wheat was 21% planted in Montana and 15% planted in South Dakota. Elsewhere, very warm, dry weather prevails, except for a few showers in Texas and eastern Oklahoma.

In the Corn Belt,
widely scattered showers are providing local relief from dry conditions. However, quickly maturing summer crops are becoming less apt to benefit from late-season rainfall. In addition, very warm weather is returning to the southwestern Corn Belt, where today’s highs will approach 90°F.

In the South, dry weather across the majority of the region favors summer crop maturation and harvesting. Showers are mainly confined to the western Gulf Coast region, the Mid-South, and Florida’s east coast. In Mississippi, harvest is underway for crops such as rice (17% complete) and cotton (1%), following a delayed planting season and summer-long crop developmental delays.

Outlook: The interaction between a tropical plume of moisture and a cold front will generate widespread showers and thunderstorms. By Thursday, shower activity will become concentrated along a line from Minnesota to Texas— and the line will propagate eastward to the Atlantic Seaboard during the weekend. Five-day rainfall totals could reach 1 to 2 inches along and east of the Minnesota-to-Texas line, with higher amounts (up to 5 inches) possible in the vicinity of the Gulf Coast. Very warm weather will prevail in advance of the cold front, while briefly cooler conditions will trail the front’s passage. However, temperatures will quickly rebound to above-normal levels during the weekend across the nation’s mid-section. The NWS 6- to 10-day outlook for September 23-27 calls for near- to above-normal temperatures from the Plains to the East Coast, while cooler-than-normal conditions will prevail in the West. Meanwhile, near- to below-normal precipitation across much of the southern and eastern U.S. will contrast with wetter-than-normal weather in southern Florida and from the Pacific Northwest into the upper Midwest