South Carolina is not close to a severe drought at this point, but the U.S. Drought Monitor does classify the Midlands and Upstate in a moderate drought and most of the rest of the state as abnormally dry. The state’s drought committee says the entire state is in an incipient drought, the first stage of dryness.
South Carolina Commissioner of Agriculture Hugh Weathers says crops are being affected by the dry weather. He says corn, which has already been harvested, was affected by the extreme summer heat.
Weathers says most of the soybean crop will be affected over the next month when it comes time for harvest. He says soybeans that were planted early in the season will probably be harvested early. Weathers says a good period of rain now would help part of the soybean crop and would be great for wheat, an important South Carolina crop.
A little bit of rain right now would go a long way. It’s at the point that we call it a million-dollar rain, when we get this dry. A nice rain like that across the board can mean a million dollars in terms of their yields and their revenues.
Weathers says that some farmers are already picking their cotton crops weeks early because of the dryness.