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Local grower celebrated for onions

 

Last updated 9/13/2007 at Noon



Gus Albers, a 22-year Fallbrook resident, has become a local legend to fellow onion growers. For the past ten years, Albers has been so successful growing his own beautiful and delicious onions that he has been ordering onion starts by the case and distributing to friends.

Albers has introduced many to his knack for growing delicious onions. He enjoys delivering the tiny plants and hearing just a few months later how well they have done.

In fact, two of his friends, Jerri Patchett and Dave Ashton, have each won a blue ribbon for their onions at the last two Fallbrook Garden Club Flower Shows, Patchett in 2006 and Ashton in 2007.

Three cases of Texas Super Sweet 1015Y yellow onion starts (60 plants to a bunch, 30 bunches to a case) are ordered by Albers each fall from Dixondale Farms of Carrizo Springs, TX. In business since 1913, Dixondale Farms personnel forecast the weather by customers’ area codes and inform them of the best time to plant the starts.

Albers currently grows between 300 and 400 onions himself each year in his three raised onion beds. His tip to planting is to push the seedling start “way down” to firmly set it in the soil. The only pests he has encountered are gophers.

Usually, Albers harvests his onions in July and lays them on a slatted, shaded outdoor table to dry. He’s careful to allow air between them to prevent them from rotting. He is often still enjoying eating his onions as late as Thanksgiving.

Albers likens his onions to the shape of a cucumber, which also makes for a nice slicing size. His favorite way to eat them is on a cracker with cheese.

 

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