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Drought Affecting 45 of South Carolina’s 46 Counties


South Carolina’s drought conditions increased in some categories and decreased in others as reported in the latest drought monitor released by the Drought Mitigation Center.  The area of abnormally dry conditions increased from 89.9 to 95.7%, the area of moderate drought increased from 35.5 to 37.6%, the area of severe drought was 17.6% last week, and this week was reported at 17.57%, and the area extreme drought decreased from 4.1% to 2.66%.  Only Aiken and part of Lexington Counties are now drought free.

North Carolina Drought Conditions Stable

In the latest drought monitor, released Thursday morning, North Carolina’s drought conditions were fairly stable.  The area of abnormally dry conditions increased slightly from 66.37% to 66.41%, the area of moderate drought increased from 38.81 to 39.17%, the area of severe drought decreased from 14.9 to 13.35% and the area of extreme drought went to zero from just under 5%.  The Coastal Plain and eastern Piedmont remain drought free.

Today’s USDA Prospective Plantings Report Won’t be the Last Word

This Friday’s Prospective Plantings Report is a key early indicator of acreage, but don’t set those numbers in stone. Gary Crawford has more:

Of course, this Friday’s USDA’s Planting Intentions report is certainly important and will be a key indicator of what may  happen this year.  But, Lance Honig, with the USDA’s Statistics Service says you have to remember USDA began asking farmers for their intentions as early as the last couple of days of February, so, it’s been about a month in which things could have changed and Honig says, even now, many farmers have lots of time before putting those seeds in the ground…”when you’re still, in many cases a month away from even getting in the field, there’s a lot of factors that can change between now and when those crops get in the ground.  And we know, from looking back over time, that some changes can occur, and in fact, this very report can be one of the tools that producers use to change from what their intentions are to what they actually plant.  Obviously what the market does is going to have a big impact on those intentions, as well.”

Last year, actually plantings of corn were half a million acres higher than the March intentions, soybeans, one and a half million higher, so don’t set the numbers in this Friday’s report in stone, a lot can change.'

A native of the Texas Panhandle, Rhonda was born and raised on a cotton farm where she saw cotton farming evolve from ditch irrigation to center pivot irrigation and harvest trailers to modules. After graduating from Texas Tech University, she got her start in radio with KGNC News Talk 710 in Amarillo, Texas.