Author Topic: Golden Bear  (Read 1051 times)

Plot22

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Golden Bear
« on: July 09, 2021, 16:11:37 »
Now perhaps someone can help me ?. On our site we suffer from all allium problems. Allium Leaf Miner, Downey Mildew and white rot plus leek moth. Last year I grew Toughball with good results. Maybe I picked an area with no white rot. I have decided to follow my old dad's way as he always grew his onions in the same patch year on year and he won prizes with his onions in all the local shows. I hasten to add so do Robinsons seeds. I have purchased Toughball seeds for over wintering onions as the sets of various varieties always bolt. Maybe that is due to sudden extremes of temperature or climate change or whatever. My question is can I grow Toughball overwinter as normally they are a January set variety? I need to find a different spot as I will be growing my summer onions in the same non white rot area. I grew Longor shallots which were not effected with white rot but the garlic in the same area was decimated. Guardsman spring onions also seem to fare well against the white rot whilst other varieties suffer dramatically.

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Golden Bear
« on: July 09, 2021, 16:11:37 »

Beersmith

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Re: Golden Bear
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2021, 19:55:00 »
White rot is a real problem for onions. In some cases it becomes completely  impossible to grow onions. Most gardening books will say there is no effective treatment at all. The main difficulty is that as the onion rots, the fungus produces sclerotia that remain in the soil for many years. They look like poppy seeds and can be seen around the base of badly rotten onions and shallots. Once present in the soil, crop rotation has only a limited effect, as most rotation systems run to three or four years at most. The sclerotia can survive far longer than that.

My plot is fairly large and while I used to be a bit haphazard more recently I've been keeping careful records and I have used a different part for onions each season for six years. I have one more area to use next year then I will be back to an area last used seven years ago. I intend to report how things go.

There is one method that some people use, that is certainly worth considering.  Choose an area you want to improve and water it either with garlic granules or garlic crushed and steeped in the water. Do this in mild weather and repeat at intervals over a couple of years. The theory is that the chemicals from the garlic trigger the sclerotia to "germinate" expecting to latch onto a new allium, only to find there is nothing actually present to infect. So the natural cycle of reinfection gets interrupted. You can get cheapish garlic granules from equestrian suppliers. If all goes well the levels of sclerotia are considerably reduced allowing a much healthier crop.

I made an attempt at this one season a few years back.  Unfortunately this was a rare case where I forgot to keep a record. I know which plot I used, but cannot remember if it was east end, west end or in the middle that got treated. I intend to try again though at some stage.  I've used all three with reasonable results, some rot but only at low levels.  So unclear if it worked well. Generally I have some rot problem but fairly low levels.

Sorry to say I have no knowledge about more resistant varieties.
Not mad, just out to mulch!

Tee Gee

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Re: Golden Bear
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2021, 20:37:20 »
Quote
There is one method that some people use, that is certainly worth considering.  Choose an area you want to improve and water it either with garlic granules or garlic crushed and steeped in the water. Do this in mild weather and repeat at intervals over a couple of years. The theory is that the chemicals from the garlic trigger the sclerotia to "germinate" expecting to latch onto a new allium, only to find there is nothing actually present to infect. So the natural cycle of reinfection gets interrupted. You can get cheapish garlic granules from equestrian suppliers. If all goes well the levels of sclerotia are considerably reduced allowing a much healthier crop

I have heard of this method although I have never used it but I think I would have if I had succumbed to the dreaded white rot.

Then if if it was successful I would use the method you suggested of dedicating a bed to onions.

By the same token I wouldn't plant other members of the allium family in that bed.

As I recall the champion onion growers only grew 'exhibitions onions' in their ' Onion bed' which was considered to be  'hallowed ground.

This method was often considered to be rather OTT but not to these growers as  they new  it worked!

Best of luck with which ever route you take

Paulh

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Re: Golden Bear
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2021, 21:39:56 »
I've used the garlic powder / crushed garlic method (and I think others here have too, there was at least one thread about it). I feel that the powder worked but it's hardly been a scientific trial. I tried to apply it as I dug / cultivated an area in the previous 9 - 15 months before I would likely be growing alliums there.

I'm also vigilant and if I see one plant dying from it, I get the whole crop up without delay.

I've not used it for a couple of seasons - I finished my supply and never got round to replenishing it. This year I lost ten out of fifty garlic, which is slightly more than it has been, so I had better start the programme again. Especially as I think my onions may do worse with it as the weather has been warmer and more humid.

Plot22

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Re: Golden Bear
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2021, 07:04:57 »
I used the garlic powder on the bed where I grew garlic to no avail. I have lost around 20 % of my garlic. I have one more bed to try which currently has beans and peas on it. Once they have done I thought of watering it with a solution of Jeyes Fluid. When you have this problem you are grasping at straws. I agree with Tee Gee regarding the bed which does not seem to be affected with the white rot. I will just stick to spring planted onions.

JanG

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Re: Golden Bear
« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2021, 07:55:22 »
On the Toughball question, I can vouch for the fact that they work really well as an over-wintering variety. I grew them this last year and they were amazingly good, and stood out from one or two other varieties I gave the same treatment to.

pumpkinlover

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Re: Golden Bear
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2021, 08:25:34 »
Can anyone enlighten me as to the topic title? I'm a bit mystified!



Plot22

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Re: Golden Bear
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2021, 09:11:59 »
Sorry Pumpkin Lover . What I meant to say is that I have purchased Toughball onions for over wintering and my question was because I had been successful in preventing white rot by setting Golden Bear onions would they over winter as well as Toughball. I knew what I wanted to say I just got a bit confused typing it out.

pumpkinlover

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Re: Golden Bear
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2021, 08:05:19 »
Thanks plot22. I haven't grown overwintering onions for years and hadn't heard of the variety. Having had the usual disaster with spring planted ones it might be worth looking at these.
 :toothy10: