Vidalia onions bloom early this season

Vidalia onions bloom early this season

In what some farmers are calling a rare occurrence, the Vidalia onions bloomed two weeks early this year.

Gabrielle Dawkins took a trip to Bland Farms in Glennville to find out what caused the early bloom. 

Bland Farms produces close to two million boxes of Vidalia onions annually.

"Some of these onions will be going to California, Washington state," said Bland.

This year, the farm's chief operating officer Troy Bland says they got a head start this season.

"We started harvesting onions this year at the end of March, and that is the first time I can ever remember us doing that," said Bland. "The onions are going to be mature by the end of April this year almost the entire crop."

He said that it's normal for the crop to be mature in May.

"So we're at least a good two weeks early on this crop this year," said Bland.

Bland says that temperatures above 55 degrees during the winter expedited the growing process.

"This year with the mild winter that we've had, we've had a tremendous amount of heat units, and those heat units have caused the onion to mature earlier," said Bland.

He says that isn't necessarily a problem for them at the farm, they're just getting an earlier start on the onions this year.

"We grade there, as well as grade by hand, with the people on the line. The finished product gets another look right before we go," said Bland. "And we're just trying to make sure we're getting the very best quality we can to our retailers."

After they harvest the onions, they go through an inspection and not every onion makes the cut.

Bland says the farm operates 20 hours a day to make sure people can take a bite and be satisfied with their onions.

© 2017 WMAZ-TV


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