The latest drought monitor revealed that Illinois is seeing the worst drought conditions in a decade. While severe drought is not unusual in Illinois, the number of counties under severe drought conditions is higher than normal. According to the drought monitor’s data, more than 14 percent of the state is under severe drought conditions. This is the highest number of counties since the 2012 drought conditions.
While drought conditions are ongoing, it is still too early to have a large impact on agriculture. Right now, crops and trees are only starting to show signs of stress. But if drought conditions continue then potential yield could start to be impacted. While impacts are only moderate on larger farms, more specialty crop growers are facing either increasing damages to crop yields or rising costs to irrigate.