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September 2022

  • Monthly Summary

Below Normal Temperatures for Most

The average temperature for September in the Midwest was 64.4°F, which was 0.8°F above the 1991-2020 normal. Statewide average temperatures ranged from 0.6°F below normal in Kentucky to 1.7°F above normal in Minnesota. Temperatures were generally above normal in the west and north and near or below normal in the east and south (Figure 1). A warm and humid air mass settled across the region from September 19-22 that resulted in over 315 daily high temperature records broken or tied. Daytime highs exceeded 90 degrees F as far north as central Minnesota, with temperatures reaching triple-digits in Missouri and Iowa. This warm spell capped off a record-setting 118 consecutive days in Minneapolis, Minnesota where the daily maximum temperature was at or above 70°F (Figure 2). Below-normal temperatures settled across the region to close out the month, which brought the first 32°F freeze slightly earlier than the historical median date for a widespread area across the upper Midwest and Iowa (Figure 3).

Below Normal Precipitation

September was drier-than-normal across the region (Figure 4). Midwestern precipitation totaled 2.12 inches, which was 1.31 inches below normal, or 62 percent of normal. September 2022 precipitation ranked as the 13th driest since 1895. Statewide precipitation totals ranged from 0.25 inches below normal in Ohio to 2.27 inches below normal in Missouri. Minneapolis, Minnesota recorded the driest September in 150 years, measuring just 0.24 inches of rain. Dubuque, Iowa measured its 3rd driest September in 148 years. Despite overall dryness, there were notable rainfall events throughout the month. Heavy rainfall across the Ohio River Valley on September 4-5 resulted in flash flooding and at least one fatality in southern Indiana, with radar-estimated precipitation of 5-8 inches falling in Jefferson County, Indiana (Figure 5). Widespread heavy rainfall, with 2-day totals up to 7 inches, was observed September 10-12 across southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois (Figure 6). Racine, Wisconsin measured a single-day total of 6.75 inches on September 12.

**Drought Expansion and Intensification **

Drought or abnormal dryness affected nearly 47 percent of the Midwest by late September, an 18 percent expansion compared to the start of the month (Figure 7). While patchy dryness was distributed across the region, drought conditions were most widespread west of the Mississippi River. Drought intensification was most notable during September in Missouri. By month’s end, drought covered over 56 percent of Missouri, and the most intense classification of drought (D4-Exceptional Drought) was introduced in several southwestern counties for the first time since 2012.


Corn and soybeans were reaching maturity near or slightly behind the 5-year pace for most of the region, except for Illinois and Indiana where corn was 14-19 percent behind the 5-year average and in Minnesota where soybeans were 13 percent behind. In Missouri and Iowa, pasture and range conditions were rated poor to very poor on about 35 percent of land, which was the most severe across the region.

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