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North China's major grain producing regions show tendency to drought

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2015-01-28 GMT+8:00

XI'AN, Jan. 27 (Xinhua) -- Most regions in North China have seen small rainfalls and higher-than-normal temperature since the beginning of winter, and the northern winter-wheat growing areas and some southwestern areas are likely to be hit by severe drought in spring.

Currently, major winter-wheat regions in northern China's Shandong, Shanxi, Shaanxi and Hebei provinces have already shown drought signs, and crop growth and soil moisture in the provinces are not optimistic.

Last year, average precipitation in Shandong was 24.4 percent less than the previous year and almost no effective rainfalls have been seen so far this year.

Besides Shandong, rainfalls in Shanxi, Hebei and Shaanxi are also significantly smaller than previous years.

The latest survey shows that drought-hit wheat areas in Shandong reached 571,533 ha, accounting for 15 percent of the province's total wheat planting area. Meanwhile, drought also affected 120,000 ha of cropland in Shanxi and 140,000 ha in Shaanxi.

This year, northern China regions are likely to continue to see smaller-than-normal precipitation and this may lead to severe drought in major winter-wheat producing areas this spring, according to meteorological forecasts.

If there are no effective rainfalls at the beginning of March, wheat's sprouting will be threatened and summer grain production and spring planting will be affected, experts say.   (Edited by Liu Xiaoyun, liuxy08@xinhua.org)

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