Unlike most crops, winter wheat is planted in the autumn. In fact, wheat planting should have been in full force by now but it has been delayed by the extreme drought. Wheat "emergence" (i.e., when the seed sprouts and a shoot can been seen above the ground) is well behind. For example, in Oklahoma 8% of the wheat has usually emerged by this point. Unfortunately, none has so far.
So, the forecast rain will be welcome and preliminary indications are that it will be substantial.
Last night's run of the European forecast model (today's precipitation output is not available) showed widespread 4 to 5.5" rainfall from the Texas Big Bend to Great Bend, Kansas.
|From AccuWeather's Professional web site. Click to enlarge. Scale below.|
The U.S. medium-range model shows lesser amounts of rainfall during the same period, but it is still substantial:
So, if these forecasts are anywhere near correct, this will be enough rain to get the crop into the ground and have it emerge. There are indications that there will be additional rain over the area between the 10th and 17th. Let's hope so.
ADDITION: The forecasts have been remarkably consistent. Compare the forecasts above to the one I posted Friday afternoon.
Here is a satellite image at 4pm CDT of the storm as it approaches the Northwest. It will take a turn to the southeast after it moves across the coast.