A strong cold front generated rain and wet snow over western and southern Russia as well as neighbouring portions of Ukraine and Belarus.
The moisture, which totalled more than 25 mm (liquid equivalent) in key winter wheat areas of southern Russia, was overall beneficial for vegetative winter grains and oilseeds.
However, temperatures behind the cold front averaged up to 5°C below normal, with the coldest conditions (night-time readings of -10°C or lower) in northern-most growing areas likely hastening winter crops into dormancy.
Even with some snow and cold, winter wheat in Russia’s Southern and North Caucasus Districts was not yet dormant.
In Ukraine, despite the changeable and unsettled weather, mostly dry conditions in north-central parts of the country facilitated corn and sunflower harvesting.
In contrast, winter wheat in southern Ukraine benefited from 10 to 25 mm (locally more) of rain.
Across the remainder of Russia, an early-season snowfall halted spring wheat harvesting in eastern portions of the country, while a sharp cold snap ended the growing season east of the Volga District.