Rainfall easing drought in certain corn states
by Jim Suhr, Associated Press
September 20, 2012 11:45 AM | 872 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
In this Sept. 19, 2012, photo corn plants weakened by the drought lie on the ground after being knocked over by rain in Bennington, Neb. The U.S. Drought Monitor update released Thursday, Sept. 20, 2012, says recent rainfall came too late to help already damaged corn crops but may help still-maturing soybeans. The report says dry conditions continue to ease in key Midwest states as farmers pick up their corn harvests. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)
In this Sept. 19, 2012, photo corn plants weakened by the drought lie on the ground after being knocked over by rain in Bennington, Neb. The U.S. Drought Monitor update released Thursday, Sept. 20, 2012, says recent rainfall came too late to help already damaged corn crops but may help still-maturing soybeans. The report says dry conditions continue to ease in key Midwest states as farmers pick up their corn harvests. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)
slideshow
Drought Slideshow
A central Illinois corn farmer harvest his crops Saturday, Sept. 15, 2012 in Oreana, Ill. The latest update on the worst U.S. drought in decades shows that farmers bringing in their weakened corn crops had some relief with recent rains that soaked much of middle America. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)
view slideshow (4 images)
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A weekly tracker of the nation’s worst drought in decades says parched conditions continue easing in key Midwest states as farmers step up their corn harvests.

The U.S. Drought Monitor update released Thursday says recent rainfall that benefited portions of the Corn Belt came too late to help already damaged corn crops. But the moisture may plump up still-maturing soybeans.

The report shows about one-fifth of the contiguous U.S. remains in the two worst categories of drought — extreme and exceptional. The swath still dealing with exceptional drop dropped by less than half of a percentage point, to 5.96 percent.

The amount of Kansas still in the worst drought classification fell by 9 percentage points to 51.04 percent. Missouri and Arkansas showed improvement in the extreme or excessive drought categories.

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