Hello Onion Industry Member:  This is the Feb. 22, 2023 issue of WSU Onion Alerts, and the 1st for the year.  This issue includes results from the 2022 WSU Extension Onion Cultivar Trial and Storage Evaluations.  

These alerts are produced by Carrie Wohleb and Tim Waters, WSU Extension, and by Lindsey du Toit, WSU Plant Pathology.  They relate to commercial onion production in the Columbia Basin of Washington and Oregon.  If this message was forwarded to you and you would like to subscribe, click HERE and choose "Onions" and any other topics that are important to you. 
The 2022 WSU Extension Onion Cultivar Trial (a.k.a. the Columbia Basin Onion Cultivar Trial) included 53 onion cultivars and lines, from 7 different seed companies, for comparison under local growing conditions.  The trial was planted on March 29, 2022 in a center pivot irrigated field managed by Grigg Farms, southeast of Quincy, WA.  Each cultivar was planted in three replicated plots. 

YIELD, BULB SIZE, DEFECTS:  A 5-ft. section of each plot was hand-harvested on September 15.  At that time, total usable yield and yield for each size category and culls was evaluated by weight (reported in tons) and by bulb count (reported as % of total count).  The results can be found HERE.

STORAGE EVALUATION:  Approximately 50 bulbs per plot were collected and bagged from each plot during harvest.  They were held in bins in a commercial storage facility operated by Olsen Onion until January 31, 2023.  That day, the onions from each plot were rated for firmness, shape, and scale retention, then evaluated for symptoms of bacterial or fungal bulb rots and functional single-centers (reported as % single-centered bulbs). The results can be found HERE.

WSU EXTENSION ONION CULTIVAR TRIALS 1999-2022:  Results from this trial and previous trials (1999 to 2022) can be accessed HERE

The images below show bulb size categories (left), a bulb with symptoms of bacterial bulb rot (middle), and an onion bulb with a functional single-center (double-centers no larger than a quarter) next to a double-center (right) (photos by Gary Pelter, retired WSU Extension).
The previous issue of WSU Onion Alerts (Dec. 15, 2022) provided information about managing seedcorn maggot and included an archive of previous issues of WSU Onion Alerts sorted by topic.  Click HERE to see it.

Image of a seedcorn maggot larva feeding on an onion seedling (photo by Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University,
The WSU Onion Alerts were established by a grant of the Columbia Basin Onion Research Committee.  Thank you for your support.
Have a great growing season!  

Questions or comments can be directed to:
Carrie H. Wohleb
Regional Vegetable Specialist
Washington State University Extension
1525 E. Wheeler Rd.
Moses Lake, WA 98837
Tel: (509) 766-3181
Tim Waters
Regional Vegetable Specialist
Washington State University Extension
404 W. Clark Ave.
Pasco, WA 99301
Tel: (509) 545-3511
Lindsey J. du Toit
Department of Plant Pathology
Washington State University Mount Vernon NWREC
16650 State Route 536
Mount Vernon, WA 98273-4768
Tel: (360) 848-6140
Copyright © 2023 WSU Extension, All rights reserved.

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