South America Oct/Nov 2020
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Started by metmike - Oct. 1, 2020, 8:35 p.m.

Crop calendar for Argentina:


  • Early corn being planted in northern Argentina, corn planting progresses southward.
  • Sunflower planting begins.
  • Wheat is in vegetative to heading phase.
  • Temperatures in northern Argentina can be quite warm.
  • Temperatures in central Argentina warming up to 70's-80 but cool spells still possible.
  • Rainfall in the form of spring showers.


  • This is the main corn planting month, especially in central Argentina.
  • Finish sunflower planting.
  • Begin early soybean planting in central Argentina.
  • Wheat is moving from heading to grain filling phase.
  • Temperatures warming up to the 80's or hotter.
  • Rainfall can be variable.


  • Corn planting finishes in central Argentina.
  • Corn pollination starts in northern Argentina.
  • Soybean planting at full steam.
  • Wheat moving from grain filling to maturity.
  • Sunflowers are flowering.
  • Temperatures now at summertime levels, can have heat waves as well.
  • Summertime rains usually become more abundant.
By metmike - Oct. 1, 2020, 8:36 p.m.
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Global Crop Production Maps by Region                                    

By metmike - Oct. 1, 2020, 8:37 p.m.
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Crop Calendar for Brazil:



  • Winter wheat is approaching maturity in southern Brazil.
  • Corn planting begins in southern Brazil. 
  • Early soybean and corn planting begins in Mato Grosso and central Brazil.
  • Rains usually begin about this time in central Brazil, temperatures are very hot.
  • Scattered showers start to occur in southern Brazil, temperatures can be hot.


  • Wheat harvest and corn planting underway in southern Brazil.
  • Soybean planting in full swing in southern Brazil, continue corn and soybean planting in central Brazil.
  • Rainfall frequency picks up in Brazil, rains 1-2 times a week, distribution may be uneven.
  • Temperatures remain very hot in central Brazil, warming up in southern Brazil. 


  • Early November is main soybean planting period in Brazil, full season corn crop should be all planted by now.
  • Earliest planted soybeans may start flowering by end of the month. 
  • Early planted corn begins pollination.
  • Rainfall now more frequent, 3-4 times a week, temperatures remain very hot in central Brazil.
By metmike - Oct. 1, 2020, 8:39 p.m.
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By metmike - Oct. 1, 2020, 8:41 p.m.
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 The maps below are for the past 30 days, 90 days and 180 days % of average precipitation. 

Soybean country of Brazil has been dry!!!





By metmike - Oct. 1, 2020, 8:44 p.m.
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The forecasts below come from the GFS/US model. 

The big weather story is that the hot/dry pattern will break in week 2 and allow some big rains for coffee land(far east/central) and potentially decent rains farther west into soybean land.


By metmike - Oct. 1, 2020, 8:45 p.m.
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By metmike - Oct. 1, 2020, 8:48 p.m.
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 If not for the huge increase in CO2 the past 100 years, crop conditions in areas of natural droughts would have deteriorated much more.  Increased CO2,  besides acting as atmospheric fertilizer also causes plants to be more water efficient.  They don't need to open their stomata as wide or as often to let CO2 in. As a result, they lose less water/moisture from evapotranspiration. 

Soybeans are a C3 plant. C3 plants benefit the most from the increase in CO2.

Differences among Plant Functional Types in Response to Elevated CO2

The preceding discussion has presented the average effects of elevated CO2, but obscures important patterns of difference in response among plant species. One of the most important determinants of species differences in response to elevated CO2 is photosynthetic type. Most plant species (~90%) utilize a photosynthetic process known as C3 photosynthesis. Other species use either of two physiologically distinct processes known as C4 and CAM photosynthesis (Figure 2). C4 plants include most tropical and sub-tropical grasses and several important crops, including maize (corn), sugar cane, sorghum, and the millets. There has therefore been considerably more research on the responses to elevated CO2 in C4 than in CAM plants.

Each plant species utilizes one of several distinct physiological variants of photosynthesis mechanisms, including the variants known as C3 and C4 photosynthesis.

Figure 2: Each plant species utilizes one of several distinct physiological variants of photosynthesis mechanisms, including the variants known as C3 and C4 photosynthesis.


"Current evidence suggests that the concentrations of atmospheric CO2 predicted for the year 2100 will have major implications for plant physiology and growth. Under elevated CO2 most plant species show higher rates of photosynthesis, increased growth, decreased water use and lowered tissue concentrations of nitrogen and protein. Rising CO2 over the next century is likely to affect both agricultural production and food quality. The effects of elevated CO2 are not uniform; some species, particularly those that utilize the C4 variant of photosynthesis, show less of a response to elevated CO2 than do other types of plants. Rising CO2 is therefore likely to have complex effects on the growth and composition of natural plant communities."

By metmike - Oct. 1, 2020, 8:57 p.m.
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Latest 2 weeks rains for South America:

GFS:  Massive, drought denting rains(all in week 2)

GFS Ensemble: Heavier rains, farther east and south but not as much for central Brazil soybeans.

By metmike - Oct. 2, 2020, 11 a.m.
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Last 6z GFS ensemble. Huge rains in the east and south(especially for coffee) but not enough west/central beans(Mato Grosso).

By metmike - Oct. 2, 2020, 11:01 a.m.
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Previous discussion on Coffee thread:

By metmike - Oct. 5, 2020, 1:51 p.m.
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Looks like great rains for much of the Brazil crop areas which have been having drought coming up on the GFS.

However, the GFS ensemble still short changes Mato Grosso in the west/central district and a huge state that produces almost 1/3 of the soybeans.,,but great rains everywhere else, especially coffee country in the far east.

1st map is the GFS

2nd map is the GFS ensemble

By metmike - Oct. 6, 2020, 12:06 a.m.
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Slow planting of #soybeans in Mato Grosso (or anywhere else in #Brazil that is big on second-crop #corn) is considered to be more harmful for 2nd corn than soy. If soy harvest is late, the corn growing season could be pushed back into the dry season, often reducing yields.


This chart from IMEA shows planting progress for #soybeans in Mato Grosso, #Brazil. Planting is well off normal pace early on. Planting was a little sluggish last year, but decent October rains allowed the efforts to pick up speed mid-month.


By metmike - Oct. 6, 2020, 12:07 a.m.
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September soil moisture in Mato Grosso's crop-heavy North district is usually the lightest of the year coming out of the dry season. But this year, soils are the driest in more than 20 years. Sowing of #soybeans in #Brazil's top-producing state is already behind normal.




Soils were also similarly dry in Sept. 2015 (led into a poor 15/16 soy harvest, was even worse for #corn) and in Sept. 2019. Though last year, October rainfall was a bit above average. Forecast for next 2 weeks is light on rainfall.

By metmike - Oct. 6, 2020, 2:25 p.m.
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There continues to be a big disparity in the amount of rain for the key soybean state of Mato Grosso between the operational model of the GFS-wetter-first map and the ensemble-drier-2nd map.

The ensemble is almost always more consistent and used by the market with more confidence.

By metmike - Oct. 7, 2020, 12:30 p.m.
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If the drought in Brazil is the main driver for prices right now, then the short term highs may be close.

2 week rains on the GFS ensemble have really increased the past day for the driest areas.....Mato Grosso. 

It looks like some good rains in less than a week for a few days but then possibly going back to hot/dry.

By metmike - Oct. 7, 2020, 2:08 p.m.
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The latest 12z GFS ensemble backed off on the rain amounts.

By metmike - Oct. 7, 2020, 8:13 p.m.
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Rain amounts have backed off on the last 2 runs.

By metmike - Oct. 8, 2020, 11:04 a.m.
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Total rain amounts were back to higher for Mato Grosso in the last 6z GFS emsemble mean.

By metmike - Oct. 9, 2020, 3:03 p.m.
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Rain amounts for Mato Grosso on this last 12z GFS Ensemble look about the same maybe and inch+ but they need 2+ inches at least. 

Actually, they could use 5 inches but anything less than 2 inches to be followed up with more rains quickly.

This is the 2 week total, much of it coming up in the event next week. 

By metmike - Oct. 12, 2020, 12:18 p.m.
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Big increase in rains forecast for Mato Grosso, especially the southwestern areas is pressuring beans today.

2 week totals from GFS ensemble below.

By metmike - Oct. 12, 2020, 10:04 p.m.
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Last 2 runs are a bit less impressive with the rains for Mato Grosso.  This is the 18Z GFS ensemble 15 day total rains. Just over an inch of rain for most of MG. Thats more than the last numerous months but not nearly enough to make a dent in the severe drought.........we'll see what November brings but it will be late to plant for some places in Central Brazil by then. 

By Jim_M - Oct. 13, 2020, 12:03 p.m.
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A lot of good stuff there Mike!  Thanks for all the posts.  After reading them all, I walk away thinking, it's dry and while there is some rain, on average, it's less than needed.  

By metmike - Oct. 13, 2020, 12:20 p.m.
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Thanks jim, we appreciate all your wonderful comments!

By metmike - Oct. 13, 2020, 4:59 p.m.
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We added rains for Matto Grosso  Sunday/Sunday Night then took some away Monday/Monday Night.

What has happened the last 24 hours is that we took out almost all the rain for MG thru day 10 and now added a pretty decent amount after that(2 inches in W.MG).

If the models are right, then we are kicking off the start of the rainy season after day 10, with those rains going very far northeast and hitting Bahia and vicinity which has been  in severe drought.

GFS Ensemble from 12z run below:

Thru day 10 on the first map.

Thru day 15 on the 2nd map

By WxFollower - Oct. 13, 2020, 5:09 p.m.
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 It still looks wet in most of the prime arabica coffee areas of Brazil for the forseeable future. Regardless, a decent amount of damage likely occurred during the intense hot/dry period of ~9/23-10/9.

By metmike - Oct. 13, 2020, 10:27 p.m.
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Latest 18z run of the GFS ensemble is a bit less with rains for MG and points northeast but it does look like a pattern change in week 2 that could lead into the start of the rainy season that would feature additional rains in November.

The southern parts of Brazil will be getting widespread 2-3 inches of rain. N. Argentina 1.5-2 inches.

Central Brazil, including MG which produces 30% of the crop only gets around 1 inch on the map below.





By metmike - Oct. 15, 2020, 2:55 a.m.
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Last 2 runs of the GFS ensemble have quite a bit of week 2 rains for Matto Grosso. 2 inches.

A bit less rain for coffee which is probably going to see a bit too much rain in some places. 

By metmike - Oct. 15, 2020, 10:59 a.m.
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The late night guidance beefed up on the rains in the driest area and caused us to sell off.

This is still week 2 and there will be changes because its so far out.

The early morning ensemble pulled back on the rains by around 1/2 inch but still has close to 2 inches in the sw parts of MG...barely enough to get by.

The last 2 runs are below.

First one was 10 hours ago, 2nd one 4 hours ago.

By metmike - Oct. 18, 2020, 8:19 p.m.
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Big rains for Mato Grosso, 3-4+ inches of rain the next 2 weeks.

Maybe much of this was dialed in with Fridays spike down.

1050 support held tonight  on the open with this bearish weather forecast.

18z, just updated GFS Ensemble below. Some places in coffee land getting 8 inches of rain. Much more than this and it may pose some problems and actually turn bullish for coffee. 

By metmike - Oct. 22, 2020, 11:41 a.m.
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Weather continues bearish for all of South America.

Over 2 inches of rain the next 2 weeks everywhere in Brazil and Argentina.

Demand from China and elsewhere is more bullish than the weather is bearish though.

These are rain totals from the last, 6z GFS Ensemble. 

Rain amounts have increased in coffee land and may be getting excessive.

By metmike - Oct. 26, 2020, 1:03 a.m.
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Not quite as much rain for several areas of Brazil and Argentina:

By WxFollower - Oct. 26, 2020, 1:36 a.m.
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 Coffeeland still looks wet for awhile.