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BRAINERD, Minn. — Jourdaine Wedll sat in the back of his van, selling tea on a rainy day at the Brainerd farmer's market.

Bags of wild rice and a braid of sweet grass, even coffee roasted by Winona LaDuke's company, were also laid out on the table under his tent.

After years of drought, he welcomes the rain.

"[The drought] was really hard on my pumpkins," said Wedll, who founded Deer Trail Teas outside Garrison. "I used to get three or four [pumpkins] on each plant. I couldn't even get one the last three years."

At least three seasons of dry weather left Minnesota's farm lands and forest foragers frustrated. Now, halfway through a moist June, crop growers and produce farmers are in a much different position.

A few stalls down, 15-year-old Christian Thorson told stories about the borderline pernicious quality of the heavy early-summer rainfall.

"Our asparagus kind of got flooded out. Some of our tomato plants did, too," said Christian, who works for family-owned Thorson's Farm Fresh Produce in central Minnesota. "But we've got a lot of stuff starting to blossom again."

A band of counties across lake-rich central and northern Minnesota were forecast to receive another storm system this coming weekend after piling up inches of rain already by Tuesday morning.

For each of the past four years, the state recorded less than 30 inches of precipitation. But just before that drought, Minnesota experienced some of the wettest years on record in the past half-century.

This matches the state's history of unpredictable weather and breaking droughts in big ways, said Peter Boulay, a climatologist with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Minneapolis has seen 17.6 inches of precipitation this year — most of it since May. That's about six inches more than had fallen by this time last year.

"Takes a lot to lift the whole state out of a drought but we managed to do it in a couple of months," Boulay said.

A wetter weather pattern also fits in with general climate change trends, he said. In addition to benefiting crops, the rain is helping to keep the state cool as the Midwest, Northeast and Mid-Atlantic are expected to face a heat wave in the coming days.

Jim Chamberlin, who farms in Deerwood, said the years of drought saw some producers forced to overgraze areas. His adaptive grazing — shuttling cattle between pastures and paying attention to soil health — has meant his lands have "exploded" in grass this season with the rainwater.

"The severely overgrazed pastures are struggling with weeds and limited grass," Chamberlin said.

Chamberlin said the rain hit his cattle's pasture Monday evening. It brought with it a good feeling that, at least lately, has been elusive, he said.