April 2018
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April is our busiest shipping month with thousands of packages heading out the door each week. It takes all hands on deck to fulfill all of our customers' orders during April. 

With many customers receiving snow and freezing temperatures late into April, we have extended our shipping season through the week of May 7th. Speaking of extending seasons, because winter has lasted longer than most gardeners prefer, below are some tips to kick start your onion plants this 2018 season. 


Happy Spring, 
 
  
Bruce "The Onionman" and Jeanie   
Shipping Season EXTENDED!
Now Shipping through the week of May 7th.
Due to a heavier winter this year, many of our customers may be late getting in their gardens and thawing out. In order to meet our customers' onion plant needs, we have extended our shipping season through the week of May 7th. 

Contact us at 830-876-2430 or email customerservice@dixondalefarms.com today to place an order if you have yet to do so for the 2018 season. 
Kick Start Your Onion Plants After a Long Winter
Many customers ordered their onion plants at their normal shipping times, but still may have them in storage because their ground has been frozen. If the plants have been stored in a cool and dry location, they will transplant successfully. They may have dry leaves, but we remind customers that dry plants are better than wet plants. Once planted, they will be on their way to full size onions. Here are some tips to help kick start your plants once you are able to plant:

Loosen Up Your Soil
After a long winter, the soil will need to be loosened up to provide proper aeration for the plants. Loose soil is important for onion plants to grow and bulb at the proper time. For some, this may require a few extra passes with the tiller or cultivator compared to a "normal" season. Compacted soil can leave you with torpedo shaped bulbs and/or smaller bulbs if the onions do not have the space to grow. 

Fertilize with a High Source of Nitrogen
If you have stored your plants for a few weeks or just received them recently, fertilizer is key for onions to receive the proper nutrition. We recommend fertilizing the soil prior to planting or just after planting so the plants have the nutrition available to them as soon as they are planted. If using our 10-20-10 Dixondale Farms Onion Special or similar high nitrogen source, be sure to not fertilize directly on the plants, but rather in the trenches, to avoid burning the roots. If using one of our Weed & Feed products ( All Natural Weed & Feed or Weed & Feed), apply the fertilizer prior to planting across the entire bed for weeding and feeding purposes. Once established, continue to feed them every 2-3 weeks with Ammonium Sulfate Fertilizer 21-0-0 or another high source of nitrogen.

Water Plants in Well
Onion plants go dormant between Dixondale Farms harvesting them in the fields and you transplanting them in your gardens. During that period, the plants live off of the carbohydrates they have stored up in the bulbs. You will want to water them in very well at planting so that they will shoot new roots and take off in your garden.  

Look for Signs of New Growth
Once you see new green leaves on your plants, they are off to a good start. New leaves should start to shoot up in the middle of your plants after they have been in the ground about a week.

If you have specific questions about the onion plant you have stored this season or any growing questions, give us a call at (830) 876-2430 or email customerservice@dixondalefarms.com. We are available year-round to answer your questions throughout your growing season.
From Our Friends
While some customers are just planting, customers in the south like Miller Career and Technology Center are already harvesting. First time grower, Miller Career and Technology Center in Katy, TX shared their Short Day Sampler harvest with us.

Principal Faldyn writes, "I have started a "farm to market" program with our culinary program.  We currently have five 8'X16' beds, all designated for cool season plants, and one strictly for onions.  The beds are located at our Science Center (STEAM) where students from throughout the district visit daily and have the opportunity to see the science side of food production.  I was able to incorporate science with plant growth and development, cool vs. warm season. These three varieties provided great evidence of which had more freeze tolerance.  We lost mostly yellow during the freezes, followed by purple, then white."


We received growing updates throughout the season from the students and provided growing advice where needed. It is wonderful to see students learning about food production in the classroom. We look forward to continuing to see Miller Career and Technology Center's onion crops in future growing season. Keep up the great work!

If you'd like to share pictures of your onion crop or stories about our onions, please email them to customerservice@dixondalefarms.com.
Featured Products
Fertilizers
We offer numerous products to help you fertilize and protect your onions. All our  fertilizers  and weed-and-feed products  come in resealable 4 lb. and 12 lb. bags.
 
Start your plants off right with our    Dixondale Farms Onion Special 10-20-10  to help establish their root systems. Our unique fertilizer is blended to include all of the micro-nutrients that onions require for  optimal bulb formation. Both 4 lb. and 12 lb. bags are available. 4 lb.  bags start at  $19.95 .


Once your plants are established, feed them   Ammonium Sulfate Fertilizer 21-0-0   to  maximize growth and bulbing potential. This  will help your onions generate more foliage and, therefore, more rings and larger bulbs. Both 4 lb. and 12 lb. bags are available. 4 lb. bags start at  $19.95 .



Shallots
Last chance to order shallots this season! We are have traditional shallot transplants! If you're interested in adding some unique flavor to your gardens, order shallots today. We recommend shallots be planted in the northern most parts of the country, as shallots are true long day alliums. Shallots are known for their mild flavor and long storage potential (8-10 months). 1 bunch starts at $14.95.


Around the Farm

Cantaloupes in Bloom
As soon as onion season comes to a close, our second crop will be nearing harvest. We harvest cantaloupes from the end of May through early July! Check back in the May, June, and July newsletters for more cantaloupe updates!



 
Cooking with Onions

Onion Patties
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornmeal
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 1/2 cups chopped onions (about 2 small onions)
  • Shortening or oil for frying
Directions

In a large bowl, mix all dry ingredients, then add milk and stir. This will give you a thick batter.  Add onions and mix until well blended.  Heat 1/2 inch oil in skillet over medium high heat. Drop batter by tablespoons into the hot oil.  Flatten with the back of a spatula, then brown on both sides until crispy, golden brown.  Drain on paper towel, sprinkle salt to taste.

Pro Tip: You can make these even more craveworthy by adding 1/4 cup crumbled, cooked bacon to the batter before cooking. Other tasty add-ins include: 1/4 cup green pepper, 1/4 cup cooked mushroom, or sprinkle cheddar on top after you've finished cooking.


Recipe from Totally the Bomb If you have an onion recipe you'd like us to share, please email it to customerservice@dixondalefarms.com.

All Your Questions Answered
We have answers to your frequently asked questions! Just click the link for information on planting, caring, feeding, harvesting, and storing onions.  

You can also read our electronic Planting Guide or download and print a PDF guide (which includes leeks). 

And be sure to review our short videos on Facebook. Topics range from fertilizing and dealing with cold weather to how onion plants are harvested. You can view these videos even if you don't have a Facebook account.
About Dixondale Farms
As the largest and oldest onion plant farm in the U.S., Dixondale Farms offers a wide selection of top-quality, disease-free, ready-to-plant onion plants. To see our complete product line or get growing tips and cultural information, visit our website .

New customer? View our 2018 catalog or order a 2018 catalog here. We're available from 8:15 AM to 5:00 PM CT at (830) 876-2430, or e-mail us at customerservice@dixondalefarms.com .

Whether you're planting one bunch or thousands of acres, we're committed to your success.
Join Us on Social Media!
Facebook Icon We invite you to join the community on our  Facebook page . You can connect with us and fellow growers to share stories, photos, recipes, weather information, and other tips. 
    
Don't forget to subscribe to our  YouTube channel! Our videos will guide you on selecting the right onion variety, applying fertilizer, the best weed control options, and more.   
 
We're on Pinterest too. Check out our Pins which include photos covering small space onion gardens, tasty onion recipes, planting tips, and more.

You can also join us on  Instagram, a photo community where we're sharing even more Dixondale photos.