Heavy rains hamper U.S. farm work

Oct. 3, 2006 at 12:49 PM
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WASHINGTON, Oct. 3 (UPI) -- Between 4 and 8 inches of rain last week soaked areas from eastern Oklahoma to the Tennessee and lower Ohio Valleys, halting farm fieldwork.

Widespread, locally heavy rain also fell across much of the remainder of the Plains and South, hampering summer crop harvesting and winter wheat planting but also reviving pastures and easing drought, the Energy Department said Tuesday.

Rain slowed or halted fieldwork in the Midwest, where wet conditions were becoming a problem in many areas but were most severe from southern Missouri to southern Ohio.

Farther west, rain and snow showers across the northern and central Rockies and northern intermountain West cut the threat of wildfires. However, more rain was needed in northwestern winter grain areas to promote proper autumn crop establishment.

Elsewhere in the West, dry weather favored fieldwork but increased the wildfire threat, particularly in California and the Great Basin.

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