According to today's Drought Monitor report of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), short-term Midwestern dryness has begun to intensify, especially along an axis from the lower Missouri Valley into the lower Great Lakes region.

This led to the introduction or expansion of several areas of abnormal dryness (D0). In addition, moderate to severe drought (D1 to D2) was added or expanded in a few spots across Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri.

The dry weather continued to support a rapid pace of agricultural fieldwork, including corn and soybean planting.

Within a few weeks, however, those crops will need moisture for proper emergence and growth.

On May 21, the U.S. Department of Agriculture rated topsoil moisture more than one-third very short to short in Michigan (40%) and Missouri (38%).