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Hot and Dry in the South and East Ukraine, Over Wet Soils in West

06 July 2012

UKRAINE - Hot and dry conditions in the southern and eastern oblasts shorten the winter crop cycle, which can reduce the yield and lower the grain quality. Maize started promisingly with high yield expectations.

In the analysed period the air temperature was higher in the whole country with two peaks in the third dekad of May and second dekad of June. The South-Eastern oblasts: Mykolayivska, Kirovohradska and Dnipropretrovska experienced a week of heat wave with temperature above 30°C, which is not typical for this period of the season.

The distribution of precipitation was heterogeneous. Western oblasts received up to +30 per cent more rain than the long term average. Concurrently the central part of the country suffered a shortage of water, because of precipitation 50 per cent lower than usual.

The hot and dry period in the central and eastern oblasts caused the relative soil moisture to reach unusually low values, while in the western oblasts, due to higher precipitation and close to the average temperature, soil moisture was higher than in the optimal conditions.

In the main winter wheat areas located in the central and southern oblasts crop cycle was shortened, which could have a negative impact on the yield. High temperature with low humidity could affect the formation of grains and it can result in lower grain quality.

Unfavourable weather conditions of the considered period lead to a continued difficult season for winter crops. Yield forecast for wheat and barley are kept on the low level. Maize started the season in favourable conditions. The above ground biomass is higher than the long term average by 30-50 per cent which can lead to high yield this season.

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