Ken Scheeringa expected to see a break in the cool, wet pattern in August, and farmers across most of the state would agree he was correct. Some may not be all that happy he was right. Because crops nearly flooded all summer suddenly ran out of water, and didn't have deep roots to go looking for it. It was a double-whammy situation.
Scheeringa is associate state climatologist with the Indiana State Climate Office. He studies long-term projection maps issued by NOAA's Climate Prediction Center.
The latest maps for September show that rainfall patterns could trend above normal in western and central Indiana. Indiana is on the edge of a large area extending west and south that could be somewhat wetter than normal in September.
The same parts of Indiana could be slightly cooler than normal. The rest of Indiana will see equal chances for above, normal or below normal trends in both temperature and precipitation. Just remember that the forecast for June across the entire state was the same – equal chances. It doesn't mean "normal," it just means there isn't enough advance indication for long-range forecasters to predict it one way or the other.
Also remember that September is a relatively dry month in Indiana. Rainfall in nearly all of the nine crop reporting districts in the state averages less than 3 inches for the month, based on a 30-year historical average. That's about an inch less than in July, which is actually the wettest month of the year historically speaking. It was eclipsed only by June this year, and in certain locations, actually produced more rain that June did.
Crops that don't mind lots of extra water, like the mint featured in this picture with dark clouds hanging nearby, fared fairly well this year. Corn and soybeans, on the other hand, struggled on soils and areas that hold water over long periods.