Drought in South Texas considered exceptional, the worst category possible to rate drought conditions, covers enough land mass to include the entire states of Vermont, Massachusetts, new Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware, Rhode Island and Hawaii.
The long-term drought includes almost 19 percent of Texas and some of the most productive agricultural land in the Southwest, under better circumstances.
Exceptional drought covers more than 32 million acres, says sources with the Texas Department of Agriculture in Austin.
Bryan Black, Assistant Commissioner for Communications, says much of the state received rain July 28. “Unfortunately, the state needs a lot more to recover from the devastating drought. New figures show conditions are getting worse.
Black said more information is available at the drought monitor Web page: http://drought.unl.edu/DM/DM_state.htm?TX,S.
Drought conditions persist up into Central Texas where some counties are well into their second year of dry conditions.
Travis Miller, Associate Head, Texas Extension Agronomist, at Texas A&M in college Station says
The Burleson, Lee, Bastrop, Travis and southern Williamson County area has been in drought since last summer and yield losses in crops are near 100 percent.
“Northern Williamson, Bell, McClennan, and Falls County had pretty good moisture until early- to mid-May, when very high temperatures and a prolonged period without rain fried a pretty good looking corn crop, reducing yields for the most part to under 50 bushels per acre.”