New Forecast for the 2014 Growing Season

Today the NWS Climate Prediction Center (CPC) released their forecast for May and beyond. There is nothing much to report for Illinois. We are in the area labeled EC for both temperature and precipitation for May and May-July. EC stands for equal chances of above-, below-, and near-average conditions. I consider that a neutral forecast without any solid evidence for unusual conditions to crop up (heat, drought, etc.).

While not shown here, the August-October maps are just as exciting for Illinois – EC for both temperature and precipitation. At least they have taken out the “increased chances of below-normal temperatures” that have been prevalent in recent months. While there has been some press about the potential arrival of El Niño this summer, the current thinking at CPC is that the effects will be minimal until later in the year.

Meanwhile, the latest 6-10 and 8-14 days forecasts (below) from the Climate Prediction Center show increased odds for both warmer and wetter than average conditions in Illinois. The warmer temperatures are welcome for warming up the soils (see Illinois soil temperatures). However, the increased chances for rain could be a problem for field work.

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6-10 Day Forecast (click to enlarge)

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8-14 Day Forecast (click to enlarge)

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