No Breaks for Brazil

The next week continues the dry trend as nearly no precipitation is forecast through July 13. A front may move through July 14-15 with a slow progression northward late next week and weekend. Being more than a week out, this is something more to watch for instead of count on. Amounts look like less than 25 millimeters (1 inch) anyway. For an area that is already 100-200 mm (roughly 4 to 8 inches) behind during the last two months, the rainfall will not make much of a difference.

And, this rainfall is coming too late for most of the crop anyway. Most of the crop has reached the fill or mature stage with only minimal amounts left still in reproduction.

Estimates from Parana, the second-largest producer of safrinha corn in Brazil, are that just 11% of the crop is still in reproduction with the rest heading from grain fill into maturity. That small percentage has already been wrecked by frosts last week and though rain would still help, it might be moot.

Wheat, in contrast, is doing much better. Rainfall has not been as detrimental in Argentina, and southern Brazil is still faring fairly in Rio Grande do Sul, though areas off to the north need rain. Lower temperatures, despite the frosty conditions, have allowed slower evapotranspiration, and kept soil moisture mostly at optimal levels for most areas.

Shower chances over southern Argentina through July 12 will only add to the moisture supply while temperatures above normal will help with growth.

John Baranick can be reached at

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