The Ag-Climate Update is a joint effort between our climate and extension specialists. Every month the update includes a brief summary of that month, agronomic impacts, relevant maps and graphs, 1-month temperature and precipitation outlooks, monthly extremes, and notable highlights.
December 2019 – Warm and wet
The major feature for the month was the rain event that came at the end of the month. Three stations set records for the greatest December daily amounts: Hays, 1.64 on the 28th; Lebanon, 1.69 on the 28th, and Emporia 3NW, 1.90 on the 29th. The Southwest division cut the fall deficit in half, and moved back to normal for the year.
This moisture improved the drought situation dramatically. All extreme drought was erased. Overall, drought coverage in Kansas moved from 45% drought free to 67% drought free (Figure 1).
Figure 1. Drought map for Kansas as of January 7, 2019. Source: UNL Drought Monitor.
The relatively mild temperatures allowed for additional emergence and development of winter wheat. According to the NASS crop report on Dec. 31, 40% of wheat is in good to excellent condition.
View the entire December 2019 Ag-Climate Summary, including the accompanying maps and graphics (not shown in this summary), at http://climate.k-state.edu/ag/updates/.