Red Wethersfield Onion Bulbs - (Allium cepa)
- Bulb Count:
- Approx 75 bulbs
- Shipping Restrictions:
- U.S. shipping only, Cannot ship to Alaska, Hawaii, Washington or Idaho
- Days to Maturity:
- Average 90-100 days
- Long day
- Plant spacing:
- 4 - 6"
- Light preference:
- Full sun
- Soil Requirements:
- Fertile and Well-drained
Red Wethersfield Onion Bulbs - Grow Beautiful and Delicious History
Sometimes called a Spanish onion or salad onion the Red Wethersfield onion, also known as 'Dark Red Beauty' and 'Large Red', is a beautiful dark reddish-purple onion with a rich history tied to the United States’ earliest years. Developed in the Wethersfield, CT area, these onions were once valued enough to be used as currency, and the Wethersfield Historical Society still pays the rent with these onions.
U.S. shipping only, Cannot ship to Alaska, Hawaii, Washington or Idaho.
These are ready-to-plant bulbs and not seeds or slips.
Mature onions are medium to large size – ranging from baseball to softball size – with dark red, papery skin covering bright maroon to dark red flesh. Their shape is usually round to slightly flattened. These beauties will keep a surprisingly long time and still retain their wonderful flavors.
Planted in early to mid-spring, they are usually fully mature and ready to harvest in early September.
Long day variety – needs 14 to 16 hours of daylight to form good sized bulbs. Grows best in northern US states.
The town of Wethersfield was known for several decades as ‘Oniontown’, partially due to the sheer volume of onions that were grown and shipped from there. As early as the 17th century through the early 19th century, growers shipped over a million five-pound onion ropes annually all along the East Coast as far as Bermuda.
An 1819 Gazetteer of Rhode Island and Connecticut noted Wethersfield was the only town in the state that made a business of ‘the cultivation of this excellent root.’ It also noted, “It is peculiarly novel and interesting, on passing through the town in the month of June, to behold in every direction the extensive fields of onions,” the gazetteer reported. “Whilst in a luxuriant state of vegetation, the growing vegetable exhales its strong savour. The atmosphere becomes impregnated, and the luscious qualities of the onion are wafted far and wide, upon every passing breeze.”
First listed as ‘Large Red’ in 1834, it was given the name ‘Red Wethersfield’ around 1852 when it became synonymous with Wethersfield, CT.
Red onions are medium in heat but big in flavor, sweeter than yellows or whites and stronger than sweets. Great for eating raw, they bring a signature crunchiness and brightness to many dishes.
Extremely versatile, they work well with almost any dishes, from simply drizzled with olive oil and slow-roasted to caramelize the sugars and richen the flavor to sliced for hamburgers or chopped into fresh salsa.
Reds make extraordinary pickled onions, completing many dishes with their complex sweet/spicy/pickled notes.
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