Hard freezes posed a risk to reproductive winter crops in western growing areas, while soaking rainfall boosted soil moisture but hampered fieldwork from southern Spain into Poland.
For much of the week, a stationary frontal boundary
was the focus for moderate to heavy rain (10-50 mm, locally
more) from southern Spain into Poland.
The wet weather
improved soil moisture for recently-planted corn, soybeans,
and sunflowers, but impeded late sowing efforts.
heavy to excessive rain (40-170 mm) in southern Spain
(Andalucía) was detrimental for filling to maturing wheat,
while totals approaching 100 mm in northeastern Italy and
northern Slovakia caused localized flooding.
North of the
front, unseasonably cold, dry weather prevailed across much of
central and northern Europe.
Crops most at risk for freeze
damage included: flowering winter wheat and barley in
northern Spain (5 nights of subfreezing low temperatures since
April 18, with readings as low as -9°C); heading winter wheat
in northern France (8 nights of freezes since April 17, with
values as low as -5°C); and flowering rapeseed in northeastern
France (9 nights of freezes since April 17, with a minimum of -
The full extent of freeze impacts - if any - will not be
known for days or weeks, until producers are able to inspect
However, crop-stage estimates (based on growing
degree day data) suggested crops were progressing through
key reproductive stages of development in the aforementioned
areas during the cold snap.