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Report: SD's cool weather to continue

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news Mitchell, 57301

Mitchell South Dakota 120 South Lawler 57301

Cooler than average temperatures are expected to continue across the northern states in May, according to a recent report released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center.

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According to Laura Edwards, SDSU Extension climate field specialist, there is some discrepancy among the numerous climate computer models for precipitation in May. Area farmers and gardeners have been awaiting warmer weather, as soil temperatures are still too cool in many areas to plant corn and backyard gardens.

Small grains, such as wheat and oats, are able to tolerate the cooler soil temperatures. Soils are still frozen at deeper levels, since the maximum frozen depths reached several feet below the surface this winter. Some southern and southeastern counties are starting off the warm season on the dry side.

One factor that could affect summer conditions is El Nino, according to Dennis Todey, SDSU Extension state climatologist.

"During the growing season, El Nino often means wetter and cooler conditions in the Corn Belt," he said. "The most recent indicators show El Nino to be increasingly likely to develop in the summer season."

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