Average temperature around the globe is increasing. Many agricultural areas in the Northern Plains of the United States have been able to grow crops which could not have been cultivated earlier. This can be attributed to accumulation of more growing degree units. Earlier studies conducted in parts of the Northern plains have shown an increasing trend of growing season length. State of North Dakota has had growing season length 12 days longer than it had a century ago. Corn as a crop has gained much from this increase in the growing season length, with the area planted in the Northern Plains for the grain nearly doubling in the last three decades. It is also gaining a lot of importance from farmers due to its gaining popularity as a source of food, fiber and fuel. This study demonstrated the accumulation of growing degree days (GDD) for Corn in the Northern Plains of United States. ASOS (Automated Surface Observing Systems) stations of North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa and Nebraska were used to collect the data on the growing degree units, based on base temperature 50° F. Statistical results showed that annual accumulation of growing degree day’s units for corn grown in North Dakota is increasing over the past century while for Iowa it is decreasing and for rest of the states there has been no statistical change from the average mean for over hundred years.
|Keywords:||Growing Degree Days, Changing Climate, Northern Plains, Corn, Base temperature|
Phd Student, Department of Natural Resources and Management, North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND, USA
North Dakota State Climatologist, Director of NDAWN and Assistant Professor, North Dakota Agricultural Weather Center, North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND, USA
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