Examples: Walla Walla Sweet, White Sweet Spanish, Yellow Sweet Spanish; When to Plant You want to tuck onions into soil at the right time to allow them a long growing season for top growth (leaves), which is necessary to yield plump bulbs. The large bulbs are mild and crunchy with pure white flesh. In general, follow these planting guidelines: Find the best dates for planting and … Of course, weather changes, season variations, variety of a crop planted and other factors profoundly affect the dates, so this is a general guide only. Note: Read more about the "Best Vegetables to Plant in the Fall.". Harvest runs through the middle or end of August. On your next view you will be asked to log in or create an account to continue reading. “The price right now is a good starting price,” Locati said. They will sit dormant during the cool season, but will be primed and ready to grow … On display in the foreground are this year’s first harvest of Walla Walla Sweet Onions, grown on her family’s Newtown Road farm. On your next view you will be asked to log in to your subscriber account or create an account and subscribepurchase a subscription to continue reading. In milder regions, onions can be planted in the late fall or winter. Walla Walla Sweet Onions, like these photographed last week along Last Chance Road, matured under a warmer-than-usual May sky. For the Almanac's fall and spring planting calendars, we've calculated the best time to start seeds indoors, when to transplant young plants outside, and when to direct seed into the ground. It’s off to the races for Walla Walla Sweet Onions! This gives the plants plenty of time to grow large and healthy enough to survive their eventual transplanting to the garden. [3] [4] Its development began around 1900 when Peter Pieri , a French soldier who settled in the area, brought a sweet onion seed from the island of Corsica with him to the Walla Walla Valley. ASK YOUR PRODUCE MANAGER They’ll know whether they’re receiving a shipment of Walla Wallas and when they’re due to arrive. This year’s harvest of one of Walla Walla’s most famous products is now underway. Should be the back-bone of any summer onion bed. In regions with a frigid winter, plant onions as soon as the ground can be worked in the spring—usually late March or April. You can plant the onion plants once the weather warms to 45 degrees (and no chance of more frost/snow) and the ground easily moved. Walla Walla onions are one of the treasures of my summer garden. You have permission to edit this article. The tasty Walla Walla sweet onion is the official Washington state vegetable — a fact some potato fans have trouble accepting. Plant flowering bulbs, biennial and perennial flowers, and vegetables that bear crops below ground during the dark, or waning, of the Moon. Our planting calendar is customized to your location in order to give you the most accurate information possible. This is one Bunch, about 60-80 plants, of Walla Walla Sweet Onion Plants. Here's how it works: Old-time farmers swear that this practice results in a larger, tastier harvest, so we've included planting by the Moon dates in our planting calendar, too. You can grow intermediate day onions, like candy and superstar, in the South during the fall season as they’re not daylight-length sensitive. Walla Walla Sweet Onions harvest in mid-June and are available through August. BONUS: You’ll also receive our Almanac Companion newsletter! Baby or not, while Walla Wallas are sweet, they don’t actually have a higher sugar content than common yellow, white or red onions. Spring Walla Walla onions can either be the result of purposeful crop planting or the product of a farmer thinning an onion field that is destined for a fall harvest. These exceptionally sweet onions add flavour to fresh salads, sandwiches and stir-fries. Promotional Rates were found for your code. Yup, fresh, seasonal onions. Please purchase a subscription to continue reading. Cultivation Advice Onion Walla Walla Thank you for reading! Locati, in his excellent Horticultural Heritage of Walla Walla County: 1818-1977, writes about the arrival of white rot. Kinda unexpected, no? Walla Walla resident Gillian Gray picks out a 5-pound bag of Walla Walla Sweet Onions at Saturday’s Downtown Farmers Market. He’s been developing it for 10 years, he said, picking off-pigment onions during harvest and planting and raising the reddest ones. Great potential, for sure.”. Last year, Walla Walla sweet onions had an early start and finish to the season. When the soil temperature is 60°F (15.6°C) at a depth of 4 inches, then plant your garlic. There was an error processing your request. Plant your Walla Walla onion starts in late April in full sun in well-drained and loose, sandy soil. Overwintering onions are susceptible to fungal disease. Walla Walla spring onions are available in the spring and fall months. Thank you for signing in! “They look good,” said Michael J. Locati, farmer and chairman of the Walla Walla Sweet Onion Marketing Committee. Use mild onions within a few weeks of harvest; pungent onions can store for 10 to 12 months. “Walla Walla sweet onions since 1926,” the Castoldi’s proudly proclaim on their website. (Steve Ringman/The Seattle Times) Spring, soil temp 65F+.Fall. It's a popular fall crop, but the dates vary wildly based on location and it's really best to gauge garlic planting dates with a soil thermometer. Onion sizes are trending toward jumbo size, about 3 inches and up in diameter, he said. When you think of a red, you think of a hot onion. Walla Walla sweet onions are in the peak of harvest season, a long tradition in the city. “Walla Walla” (Allium cepa ‘Walla Walla’) “Vidalia” (Allium cepa ‘Vidalia’) “Egyptian” Egyptian (Allium cepa var. Read more about starting seeds indoors here. Plant the seeds 1/2" deep in a flat 2-3 months before the last frost date; keep the soil moist and at room temperature. The crop first came to Walla Walla in the late 1800’s and is a staple part of the community. An email has been sent to with a link to confirm list signup. Walla Walla River Packing Co. begins offering organic Walla Walla sweets for the first time this year, Locati said. This planting calendar is a guide that tells you the best time to start planting your garden, based on frost dates. By the middle of this month, the whole crop will be harvested and once they’re gone, they’re gone. June through September is the season for Walla Walla onions, those sweet jumbo onions that make you look forward to summer. Thank you for reading! Zones 2-8. Current Facts Walla Walla onions are botanically known as Allium cepa. May be spring planted in … Walla Walla sweet onions are protected by a federal marketing order designating the legal production area. Mike Locati’s family has been farming sweet onions in the area for over 100 years. Sales are handled by … Outdoors, the unpredictability of rain, drought, frost, low and high temperatures, sunlight, and pests and diseases can take a toll on young plants, especially when they're just getting started. We hope that you continue to enjoy our free content. Onions are commonly harvested in the summer or early fall of the year. We'd advise checking our. When the tops begin to flop over, cut them off to 3" to focus the growing on the roots. WALLA WALLA, Wash. — Walla Walla sweet onion harvesting season officially started this week as the community anxiously awaits for the product to hit grocery store shelves. Sign up to this list to receive updates on breaking stories such as emergency road closures, major local news, local weather alerts and the like. In other words, plant from the day after the Moon is full until the day before it is new again. It was there that a French soldier, Peter Pieri, found a sweet onion seed and brought it to Walla Walla in the late 1800’s. A short keeper so use fresh from the ground. June 25, 2020 Washington State’s 2020 Walla Walla Sweet Onion season kicked off Thursday, June 18, at Walla Walla River Packing, as Locati Farms/Pacific Agra Farms started harvest. The original campaign for the Walla Walla onion as the state vegetable was championed by middle school classes beginning in 2004. For more information, visit the Onions page in our How to Grow section. We hope that you continue to enjoy our free content. Harvest runs through the middle or end of August. In other words, plant from the day the Moon is new until the day it is full. from this year’s first harvest grown at Castoldi’s family farm on Newtown Road. Harvesting Sweet Walla Walla Onions that are around 90-95 days mature. Sorry, no promotional deals were found matching that code. Your current subscription does not provide access to this content. Marlene Castoldi sells this year’s first harvest of Walla Walla Sweet Onions, grown on her family’s Newtown Road farm, at Saturday’s Downtown Farmers Market. 4.2 out of 5 stars 16. Walla Walla sweet onions are protected by a federal marketing order designating the legal production area. The Walla Walla Sweet Onion story began nearly a century ago on the Island of Corsica, off the west coast of Italy. Their five-pound bags were selling quickly while folks milled about under the cover of shelter at the transfer station during Saturday’s cold showers. Marlene Castoldi bags an order of fresh vegetables at Saturday’s Downtown Farmers Market. Success! For most crops, you should start seeds indoors about 6-8 weeks before your last spring frost date. Grow unique and delicious Walla Walla Sweet Onions … The Season for onion plants is normally from March to May. In the Northwest, seed is sown in late August and a crop of very large, flattened, ultra-mild onions is harvested early the next summer. Onion Walla Walla. Locati is introducing a red Walla Walla sweet onion in “very limited production,” less than 5 percent of the yellow Walla Walla sweet crop. Walla Walla Sweets are seasonal, so if you can’t find them in your market, other sweet onions like the Vidalia will work just fine. Planting in late summer for a fall harvest has many benefits (soil is already warm, temperatures are cooler, fewer pests). It’s a beautiful, kind of pinkish-hue onion, very mild. However, this season will have more normal timing. Walla Walla sweet onion farmers started harvesting this weekend, the leader of the crop’s marketing committee says. Full sun. “It’s not a deep red, I call it more of a rosé Walla Walla sweet,” he said. The onion is a bulb onion bred for use as a diced or sliced product rather than for use fresh as a green onion or as a small bulb for pickling. Now the onions have all matured into the behemoth beauties recognized worldwide. If the market is out of sweet onions, use a large yellow onion. Plant annual flowers and vegetables that bear crops above ground during the light, or waxing, of the Moon. When seedlings have grown too large for their seed trays or starter pots, it's time to transplant. “We’re excited for a pretty good season.”. The "days to maturity" of a crop and the length of your growing season also factor into whether you start seeds early indoors or directly sow seeds into the ground outside. Yellow onions have the best flavor for onion rings. “These are the last of the spring salad onions,” Marlene Castoldi said, pointing to a dozen bundles of small Walla Walla sweets, green spouts still attached. Indoors, you can control these elements to maximize your plants' early growth and give them the best shot at thriving when they are eventually transplanted outdoors. Sowing: Since onions take a few months to mature from seed, gardeners with a short growing season may want to start their Walla Walla onion seed indoors. Locati Farms hand selects only those Walla Walla Sweet Onions that have that perfect color, shape, and texture. Start seeds 5-8 weeks before the last frost and plant out when the threat of frost is gone. If it's not yet warm enough to plant outdoors, transplant the seedlings to larger plastic or peat pots indoors and continue care. In addition to being the state vegetable, each July in Walla Walla, Washington there is a sweet onion festival that celebrates the well-known variety through food vendors, arts and crafts, and live entertainment. Get more tips for transplanting seedlings. Some say this is the world's best tasting onion. The Walla Walla onion is a sweet white onion identified with the Pacific Northwest and the Walla Walla, Washington, area in particular. Onion Walla Walla. The earlier dates are more applicable to southwest Washington and the later dates for more northerly or colder areas. Space plants 4 to 6 inches apart in rows that are 12 to 18 inches apart. Sweet Onions Each harvest season begins in mid-June and continues until mid-August. Please note: To plan your garden more accurately in the future, keep a record of your garden's conditions each year, including frost dates and seed-starting dates! “Profitability, the margins are getting slimmer with the way labor costs have gone up, especially in Washington State.”. Long story short: they won't make you cry when you cut them! They are among the earliest to be transplanted out in spring and one of the first to be harvested, usually by late June. Learn more about Planting and Gardening by the Moon. In Walla Walla, the season is June-August. However, the challenge is getting your crops harvested before the winter frosts begin. Please log in, or sign up for a new account and purchase a subscription to continue reading. Long day onions, like hybrid copra, red wing, and walla-walla, suit planting in the North. [5] Plant them in the fall through late spring. viviparum) Also called winter onions (and not as tender as other varieties), Egyptian onions are very cold-hardy, however, you cannot start them … They’re usually on the market until fall, and smaller than those grown in Washington. Starting seeds indoors also provides plants with a chance to grow in a stable, controlled environment. Welcome! The East Oregonian and Walla Walla Union-Bulletin, First Congregational Church Seasonal Offerings. About 10 to 15 farmers raise the niche onion on 500 total acres in Walla Walla County and a small part of northeastern Oregon, according to Locati. Very sweet, juicy onions store best in the refrigerator. Planting calendar for Walla Walla, Washington. Please disable your ad blocker, whitelist our site, or purchase a subscription. They do, however, have a higher water content, which makes them so juicy – and also more perishable than other onions. Please log in, or sign up for a new account to continue reading. Instructions: For the finest onions, seed Walla Walla Onion seeds directly outdoors in full sun and well-drained soil. Planting by the Moon (also called "Gardening by the Moon") is a traditional way to plant your above- and below-ground crops, especially at the start of the season. The Walla Walla onion doesn't do long term storage like some onions, but they will stay fresh in your fridge for a few months without any problem. Average yield is roughly 650 50-pound units per acre. Because Walla Walla sweet onions are on right now, and they have a season as short as peaches. Sow Walla Walla onion seedlings in early spring for a late June harvest . Thank you for reading! Error! A fantastic and ever popular old French variety producing one of the sweetest onions available, ideal for salads. These charts cover Washington State. When we calculate fall planting dates (which are really in the summer), we must account for several factors, such as the time to harvest once the crop is mature and whether a crop is tender or hardy when it comes to frost. This is important to know since growing onions that are not well-suited in your area will yield inferior bulbs. The Walla Walla sweet onion is named for Walla Walla County, Washington, where it is grown. In the spring, starting seeds indoors (in seed trays or starter pots) gives your crops a head start on the growing season, which is especially important in regions with a short growing season. If outdoor conditions allow, start hardening off your seedlings approximately one week before your last frost date, then transplant them into the garden. In Zones 9 and 10, direct sow or transplant out your onion seeds. Custom programming and server maintenance by, Read more about starting seeds indoors here, Get more tips for transplanting seedlings, We tend to direct-sow leafy greens such as, Note that garlic is not included in our planting chart. The cool, wet weather the area experienced in May can lead to gray mold or white rot. Season: In Wisconsin, the Walla Walla-type onions are planted in April and are harvested beginning in July. Sowing: Since onions take a few months to mature from seed, gardeners with a short growing season may want to start their Walla Walla onion seed indoors. Walla Walla onions can be … Sweet onions—including Maui Sweets, Vidalia Sweets, Texas Sweet, and Walla Walla Sweets—lack the sulfuric punch of regular onions. “It’s just another option. We hope that you enjoy our free content. Walla Walla growers from Castoldi’s, 325 Newtown Rd., were at the downtown farmers market Saturday morning with the first bags of sweets this season. 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