|Helpful How-Tos||November 2012|
Now that we've started taking orders for the 2013 season, we're sure you're itching to get your onion patch started!
We can guide you every step of the way, whether you prefer to read or view your planting instructions. Our expert advice is available in our newsletters, printed guides, on our Web site, through YouTube, on Facebook, and of course from our customer service department.
Online Resources Available 24/7
Our newsletters are archived on our Web site, listed by date and topic for easy reference.
Our electronic Planting Guide covers pre-planting, soil prep, planting, watering, fertilizing, weeding, bulbing, harvesting, curing and storing. If you prefer to print this guide, we've also got a downloadable version in PDF format.
Frequently Asked Questions
In addition to growing information, consult our FAQ to find out when to order, how to store onions before planting, and plant care tips, in addition to what you need to know about preparing your onion bed's soil before fertilizing.
Growing Onions in a Raised Bed
Raised beds are ideal for those of you with limited space or poor soil. Don't worry, you can still grow onions!
In addition, we've got a page dedicated to onion troubleshooting. There are representative photos for each onion issue you might face, most linking to offsite information.
If you prefer visual guidance, then our YouTube videos are for you. We demonstrate how to fertilize onions, and discuss applying nitrogen, weed control, and more.
We also lead an active community on Facebook, where we discuss regional weather issues, and offer helpful hints, troubleshooting tips, and more. And of course, folks are also posting photos and recipes to share!
You'll also get printed planting instructions mailed with your onions. Please note that all our printed guides now include QR codes that you can scan with your smartphone to link to more online onion information!
Our customer service representatives are second to none, and can be reached from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM Central Time at 877-367-1015 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Or, visit our Web site at http://www.dixondalefarms.com.
Bruce "Onionman" Frasier
Products to Use at Planting Time
Dixondale Farms offers numerous products to help you plant, fertilize, grow, protect, and harvest your produce. The following planting time products include a fertilizer, a combination feed and weed aid, an all natural feed and weed, and a chemical weed control option. All our fertilizers and feed-and-weed products come in four-pound bags, as well as our new resealable 12-pound bags.
Dixondale Farms Onion Special 10-20-10: This exclusive fertilizer contains a blend of organic humic acids and essential micro-nutrients that onions crave, such as magnesium, zinc, boron, copper, iron, manganese, and molybdenum.
This is the fertilizer you want to start your plants out with, in order to establish the root systems. Later, apply the Ammonium Sulfate (21-0-0) until the onions start to bulb.
Dixondale Farms Feed and Weed 10-20-10: This is a unique fertilizer and organic pre-emergent herbicide all in one. The 100% natural corn gluten meal blocks weed germination, so you can establish your onions in a weed-free area, while our fertilizer blend provides the nutrients necessary for huge, delicious onions.
All Natural Feed and Weed 2-5-3
: This purely organic product combines an all-natural fertilizer with the pre-emergent weed control power of corn gluten meal. It's ideal for preparing a weed-free bed and feeding your onions up to size.
From Our Friends
Big as Bowling Balls!
In this incredible picture, Rob and Megan from Morrice, Minnesota show off their prize-winning Ailsa Craigs. Says Rob, "Thanks again for another wonderful and bountiful year of onion production.
"First place again at the Shiawassee County Fair!"
We're happy to be your secret weapon, Rob!
Got some onion-related photos to share? Click here for submission tips. You just might see your photo in a future newsletter!
|Around The Farm
New For 2013
Catalog Has Mailed
You should soon be receiving your printed catalog in the mail; in fact, you may have it by the time this newsletter reaches you. And we're now accepting orders for 2013 on our Web site
and on the phone. New Product Announcements
We've added some growing aids to our 2013 lineup: two organic disease prevention products, OxiDate and Azaguard. OxiDate
is a simple, ready-to-use organic fungicide/bacteriacide. It's EPA registered, offers a great alternative to copper-based products, contains no chlorine or ammonia, and leaves no harmful residue. Used weekly, this eco-friendly formula effectively stops diseases such as powdery/downy mildew, phytophthora, brown rot, wilts, blights, and bacterial wilt on contact. It kills bacterial and fungal pathogens and fights against diseases caused by both, all without harming the environment or posing a risk to human health or safety. Azaguard
is an organic insecticide and insect repellent that kills those nasty onion maggots and thrips (along with 300 other species of insects). This organic-approved formula is EPA registered and meets NOP standards. Like Oxidate, it's chlorine and ammonia free. It isn't actually toxic; it works by inhibiting insect growth, feeding, and reproduction.
|Cooking With Onions|
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup Vidalia onion juice (1 large onion, run through a juicer)
- 2 cups dry red wine
- 1˝ cup red wine vinegar
- 6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt (fleur de sel, "flower of salt," if you can get it)
- A pinch cayenne pepper
- 2 medium Vidalia onions, cut lengthwise into eight wedges and separated into petals
Stir the sugar and onion juice in a large saucepan until the sugar is evenly wet, then cook the mixture over medium heat to 360 degrees, until it's medium golden in color. It should smell like toasted onions.
Immediately remove the pan from the heat and slowly add the wine. Be aware that the hot syrup will sputter and pop, but don't let this deter you; it will soon quiet down. Cook the mix on medium-high heat until the syrup completely dissolves into the wine. Add the rest of the ingredients, then adjust the heat to maintain a light simmer and cook the syrup until it reduces and thickens to the consistency of maple syrup. This can take up to 45 minutes.
Allow the syrup to cool slightly before use, leaving in the onion pieces. You can store the syrup in your refrigerator for up to one month. To serve, sauté some onions and mushrooms until browned, then stir them into the syrup mixture and warm them through. Serve over steaks or duck breasts by putting some of the onions on top, and then drizzling them with some of the syrup.
Courtesy of Chef Chip Desormeaux. If you have a recipe you'd like us to print, please email it to us at email@example.com.
|Q & A: Fertilizing Your Onions|
Q. How should I prepare my onion beds for fertilizing?
A. That's an excellent question, and requires a thorough and fairly lengthy answer. It's also well-timed, since we've just posted a brand new page on our Web site dealing with the fertilization requirements of onions. Check it out!
|Fun Onion Facts|
It's said that if you're blindfolded and your nose is plugged, you can't easily tell the difference between the taste of apples, potatoes, and onions. You see, the sense of taste depends heavily on the sense of smell, and if it's blocked, foods with similar textures taste pretty much the same. The blindfolding is not just so vision won't give it away, but also so the onion's component chemicals won't cause you to tear up (a dead giveaway). Of course, the instant you unstop your nose, you'll know what you've eaten!
Apparently, millions of school kids have proven this factoid in science classes down through the years, though we here at Dixondale like to think we can tell the difference no matter what. Hmm...might be time for a round of experiments.
All Your Questions Answered
We have answers to your frequently asked questions! Just click the link for information on when to order your onions, as well as for tips on planting, caring, feeding, harvesting, and storing them.
Share Your Photos for our Centennial!
Next year marks our one-hundredth year in business, and we'd love you to share in our upcoming Centennial Celebration! In 2013, we'll be featuring even more customer photos than usual in our newsletters and other publications.
So send us photos and descriptions of your Dixondale onion crops, whether they're recent or from years ago! Just be sure to include your name and location. Send stories about your best and most challenging growing experiences, too, so we can share those with fellow growers.
Join Us On Facebook!
Join the community of friends and growers on our Facebook page! You can connect with us and fellow growers to share stories, photos, recipes and even weather information and other tips.
Ever wonder where onion rings originated? For more info on these tasty treats, along with a mouthwatering recipe, take a look at this entry from October 26, 2012.
And be sure to check out our short videos, on topics ranging from how onion plants are harvested to how onions deal with cold weather.