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Area fields doing well after weekend storms

By Staff | May 1, 2009

This pond, which feeds a runoff stream running into a nearby ditch, was taken Monday, east of Stratford, which rainfall amounts were measured between 5 to 6 inches.

Iowa’s fields that are north of U.S. highway 30 and west of U.S. highway 69 tend to be in good shape despite a low pressure system that spawned a squall line that drenched the region in repeated rainfall from late Saturday night to early Monday morning.

However, it could get a lot wetter.

Storms and thunderstorms erupted Friday night, producing hail in northeast Iowa, including Butler, Floyd and Bremer counties. It marked the first major weather patterns since frost left the soil.

The National Weather Service forecasted a cold front that would stretch across the region and stall. Showers and thunderstorms continued throughout Sunday.

Drier, but cooler weather, was the norm for the start of this week.

Cattle graze near a small pool of runoff rain water Monday north of Liscomb, in Marshall County.

Around the Farm News coverage area rain gauges were reading less than did those farther south and east.

The National Weather Service said that with the lack of rain in the preceding weeks, flooding was not evidence here as there was plenty of room in the region’s water table to hold the rain.

An agronomy web site at Iowa State University shows that during April Iowa has received an average of 3.5 inches of rain, just an inch more rain than the state’s climatological average of 2.5 inches, as of April 28. It is still two inches less than April 28, 2008, when the state average measured 5.5 inches.

Rainfall amounts were measured over the weekend at 2 inches in Otho, while 1.3 inches were noted in Lake City, 1.5 inches around Milford and 1 inch in Alton.

Marshall County, however, sustained upward to 6 inches of rain that caused the temporary closing of U.S. Highway 14 because of the rapid rise of water in the Iowa River.

According to AccuWeather.com, the Farm News coverage area should get a chance to dry out before more rain arrives next Tuesday, Friday and Saturday.

Correspondents Kriss Nelson, Darcy Dougherty Maulsby, Renae Vander Schaaf and Karen Schwaller and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

Contact Larry Kershner by e-mail at “mailto:kersh@farm-news.com”>kersh@farm-news.com.

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