Garden Watchdog Honors Us!
Dear Fellow Gardener,
Dixondale Farms is at the top of the charts!
That would be The Garden Watchdog charts, for
which we owe our customers a big round of thanks.
If you're not already aware of The
Garden Watchdog, part of the popular
Dave's Garden Web site, you may want to check
it out. A great resource for gardening
aficionados, it's a free directory of more
than 6,890 mail-order gardening companies.
At Garden Watchdog, gardeners share their
opinions on which companies really deliver on
quality, price and service. Since 1994, 3,624
companies have been reviewed, and 50,693
comments have been posted -- some positive, some
neutral and some negative -- by 26,411 customers.
Recently, we received word that we'd been
selected as a Top 5 company for our category,
"Bulbs: Onions and Garlic," for the year 2009.
We're delighted by the honor,
especially since it's based on reviews by the people
who count -- you, our
We appreciate all the positive feedback! Our
Top 5 rating puts us in rarefied company, and
knowing that you enjoy our products and our
customer service makes it all worthwhile.
To see our Garden Watchdog entry, just click
Bruce "Onionman" Frasier
Product of the Month
A Request for Feedback
This year, we introduced two new onion
Candy Apple and Sterling,
and we've been listening carefully to
what customers have said about their
experiences with these new onions. Here's
some of the initial feedback, including
Sterling, a long day white onion that will
store well, performed as expected in most
cases. Red Candy Apple had mixed results, but
keep this in mind: it should be viewed as a
separate and distinct onion and not compared
to Candy, a yellow onion which is much easier
Red Candy grows to a maximum size of three
inches. The onion will be sweeter the larger
it is, and a striking red unless you take it
too early -- in which case the bulb will be
completely white on the inside, with no red
rings at all.
Red Candy grows more slowly than other
intermediate-day types, and thus may not have
as many leaves when the bulbing process
begins. You'll need to push it along with
more nitrogen applications to get it to grow
faster, stopping about 45 days from harvest.
One application three weeks after planting
followed by two more applications at two week
intervals, for a total of three applications,
should be sufficient.
We encourage you to go to our Web
site and review Red Candy and Sterling,
if you've grown either this year. If not,
we'll welcome your product reviews on any of
our onions! You'll find a review link to
click at the end of the product description
for each specific variety.
From Our Friends
This month, we hear from John and Martha
Story of Westport, New York:
"Your 2009 onion shipment arrived just as we
were getting down to the last of our keepers
from last summer. We tilled at our farm in
the Champlain Valley this weekend, and
planted some Lancelot leeks and six bunches
of onions: Walla Wallas, Yellow Spanish,
Ringmasters, Ailsa Craigs, Red Torpedoes, and
Cippolini -- all of which did great last
summer. We've been growing them for years,
and are now getting some gardening help from
our 10 grandkids."
We love hearing from our customers. Send us
favorite "onion photo" and we'll try to
include it in a
future newsletter, our next catalog or our
online Photo Album. Click
here for details on how to
submit your photos.
Around the Farm
Russian Exchange Program
Here I am at the Kremlin in Moscow!
I just returned from a twelve-day visit to
Russia, and I must say that it was very
interesting and worthwhile to meet Russian
farmers face-to-face, to tour Russian
facilities, and to visit their farms.
Their land is some of the greatest farmland
on Earth, and their climate is more in line
with Iowa in the southern portion and Canada
in the northern portion. Their onion
production mostly comes from their "dashas,"
which are their weekend houses in the
countryside. What little acreage is dedicated
to vegetables primarily produces potatoes,
cabbage, and carrots.
Most of the onions are planted one year, kept
in the ground over the winter, and then
produce a bulb the following year -- a two-year
process! Seed stems are a big problem. They
would love to have our transplants over
there, but since onions aren't that big in
their diet, they're satisfied with importing
onions from other European countries or
former Soviet republics.
Cooking With Onions
Onion Barbecue Sauce
- 1/2 cup of minced Vidalia onions
- 1/8 cup of oil or margarine
- 1/2 cup of tomato ketchup
- 1 teaspoon of dry mustard
- 1 tablespoon or Worcestershire sauce
- 2 dashes of Tabasco sauce
Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl,
and serve on any of your barbecued meat
dishes, either during cooking or afterward.
It goes well with hamburgers, frankfurters,
beef, chicken, pork, and even fish, and makes
a great dipping sauce for just about anything.
This recipe makes about 3/4 of a cup, but
it's easily scalable.
Onions can enhance so many dishes, from
salads to complex entrees; and they can also be
consumed raw, fried, sautéed or baked. We
periodically receive sumptuous recipe
from our employees and from you, our customers.
We want to share one with you each month, so
you can take full advantage of the fruits of
your labor! If
you have one you would like us to print,
please email it
to us at
Q&A: Overwintering Onions
Q.Can I grow onions in the fall and
A.The quick answer is no -- or at
least, not in the northern hemisphere, though
there are some areas of the country that
plant seed in the fall and overwinter them
for spring production. The plants have enough
time before going into dormancy to get
established, and they start growing again in
the spring when the ground warms up. These
areas are primarily in the Southwest, where
temperatures don't get so cold as to kill the
Onion tops are grown in increasing day
length, and then bulbs are formed when the
day length trigger is met for a particular
variety. It's best to just wait until the
spring and plant the transplants.
Fun Onion Facts
We thought we'd treat you to more silly onion
laws this issue.
In Blue Hill, Nebraska, no female wearing
"a hat which would scare a timid person" may
be seen eating onions in public.
In Pocataligo, Georgia, you're not allowed
to eat onions while lounging on bakery
shelves, curiously enough.
In Budd's Creek, Maryland, you're not
supposed to eat onions unless you're over 21
and have written permission from your dentist.
And of course, if you reside in Spades,
Indiana, you'd better purchase your onions
before 6 PM. Otherwise, you'll need a
prescription from your doctor.
Send Us Your Product Reviews!
In addition to sending us recipes and photos
onions, we encourage you to give us
feedback on our products via the Product
Review options on the Web site. You'll find
a "write your own review" link on every
product page. Don't be shy -- we need
About Dixondale Farms
As the largest and oldest onion plant farm in
Dixondale Farms offers a wide selection of
disease-free, ready-to-plant onion plants.
To see our
complete product line, request a catalog, or for
growing tips and cultural information, visit our
Web site by clicking
Whether you're planting one bunch or
acres, we're committed to your success. If
either questions or suggestions, we'd love to
from you. You can reach us from 9:00 AM to
Time at 877-367-1015, or
e-mail us any time