Hot and dry weather devastating for wheat cropsBrett Worthington, Tuesday September 10, 2013 - 13:18 EST
Hot, dry days in the Mallee are stripping subsoil moisture from crops desperate for rain.
Farmers have everything crossed that rain forecast for Thursday will fall and get their season back on track.
Agronomist Dale Boyd, from the Department of Environment and Primary Industries, says it's been a devastating start to spring for crops, with 30-degree days.
"With the recent dry weather, with a bit of heat in it, we are finding...(wheat) is extracting moisture quite quickly from all depths but especially starting to deplete it from depths like 60, 70 and 80cms," he said.
Mr Boyd says it's crucial crops receive rain in the weeks ahead.
"Due to the crop stage where it is at now, going through booting, pushing the head up, pretty soon some of those crops will be flowering," he said.
"It would be ideal not to have some of the stresses on that plant, one of them being moisture stress and some of it being heat stress as well."
© ABC 2013
More breaking news
Radio transmitters have been inserted into the stomachs of 24 feedlot cattle to monitor their body temperatures, as part of a three-month trial investigating the impact of heatwaves.
People in Darwin and other parts of the Top End may be about to get relief from recent hot weather, with the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) predicting a monsoon trough will start to effect the area within days.
Residents have described chaotic scenes in the streets of Mudgee as the town was battered by damaging winds today.