Minnesota Farmer

The onions have spoken

Our local weather onions have spoken and southwestern Minnesota could be in for another dry year.3079204437_9fd66f7568_t

Four local folks placed their six halved and hollowed out onions in the basement New Years Eve to forecast the next years rainfall.  After a teaspoon of salt is placed in each half, the onions are placed in two rows in either a cooler or in the basement.  You need to have them in a cool place.  The amount of water in each tells how much water each month will have.  Although this is not an exact science, it has proven to be a good long-term look at our rainfall events.

So what is the forecast for 2013?  Each onion half is labeled as having no water, a small amount, a medium amount, a lot of water, or running over.

January, small

February, small

March, small

April, very small to dry

May, small

June, small

July, small

August, very small

September, very small

October, small to dry

November, very small

December, small

Onions may forecast a different amount of water where you live, but for these four folks in my area, if looks as if we will be on the short side of the years rain showers.  It’s not exact, but it is an idea.



9 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Is there science behind onion prognostication or is it just statistical variance that provides a semblance of accuracy?

Comment by Len Rosen (@lenrosen4)

I don’t know, but I do know it is a better long range forecast than most. They have forecast some very wet and very dry months with accuracy, and then they miss a few.

Comment by Michael

I have never heard of anything like this, but find it quite intriguing. I hope you follow up at the end of the year and reveal the accuracy of this forecast.

Also, I wanted to email you today, but apparently do not have your address on file anymore. I was emailing all of the bloggers whom I highlighted a year ago in the Minnesota Moments feature. One of them, Nina Hedin, is in need of help after her husband was seriously injured in a snowmobile accident. Please check out my post today at this link:


If there is anything you can do to help whether via prayer, a financial gift, encouraging words and/or spreading the word about the family’s needs, I would appreciate it.

Comment by Minnesota Prairie Roots

Got it!

Comment by Michael

Fantastic. Thanks for letting me know, Michael.

Comment by Minnesota Prairie Roots

Leo has been doing this since the 50’s and is fairly accurate, much better than old farmers almanac, but it is local and does not translate more than a mile or two.

Comment by Michael

After I wrote that comment I wondered if this was Leo (whom you previously told be about) who was forecasting. I need to meet that man sometime.

Comment by Minnesota Prairie Roots

He’s getting up in years, don’t wait too long!

Comment by Michael

Yes, that’s happened before; I’ve waited too long.

Comment by Minnesota Prairie Roots

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