NEW ULM - The National Weather Service (NWS) reported hail fell Sunday afternoon near St. George and Gibbon.
That was the only hail reported in the state Sunday as a small but intense weather system dumped up to a couple tenths of an inch of rain in Milford Township, just west of New Ulm.
South Central College agriculture instructor Wayne Schoper said area corn fields need an inch to an inch and one-half of rain in the next week to 10 days.
"There will be lots of corn tasseling, making rain critical, as we move towards pollination," Schoper added.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture reported corn about two feet high as of Monday, June 18, about double the usual mid-June height. The USDA attributed the rapid corn growth to a warm spring, early planting and plentiful early season rainfall.
The USDA reported 82 percent of Minnesota's corn crop in good to excellent condition on June 18, among the best corn conditions in the country.
Seventy-three percent of soybean fields were reported in good or excellent condition, well ahead of the national average, the USDA reported.
Soybeans were reported blooming at the end of June, the earliest date Schoper said he can remember.
On Monday, the 6 to 10-day forecast called for above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation across most of the country.
The DTN agriculture weather forecast predicted additional crop-threatening Midwest heat with hot and mostly dry weather to continue to stress reproductive corn and soybeans during at least the next five to seven days.
Crops in Missouri, central and southern Illinois, central and southern Indiana are most at risk due to recent extreme heat and little rainfall during the past 30 days or more.
(Fritz Busch can be e-mailed at email@example.com).