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Onions


Mea

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We usually have pretty good luck with onions. By that i mean...the stalks are straight and tall, while the bottom might get to be an inch or so in diameter.

 

DH asked me to ask here, if there are any tricks on getting the onion-ball to increase its size ? Would "hilling" them help as it does with potatoes ?? Any other useful tips ?

 

( I really do get a kick out of DH asking me to post a question for him. He's not one to visit "Chat Forums" but let him need a tractor or mower part... and he'll be on the computer for a while ! lol.)

 

Thank You again for Your hepl. Mea.

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Onions like a very rich fertile soil. Lots of organic matter. Not too acidic.

They need nitrogen early on, but less as plants mature. Supply their high potassium needs by digging in greensand the fall before. use compost and sprinkle with some wood ashes to supply minerals. Keep well watered until bulbing time.

 

You don't hill up onions. In fact, you need to plant them rather shallow so they are not hindered when they start to swell.

Each "leaf" is a layer in the bulb. The more leaves you have, the more layers and the bigger the bulb.

 

Plant them no more than six weeks before your average last frost date, but protect from freezing, or they may send up a flower stalk prematurely.This would prevent bulbing.

 

Also, be sure you are planting onions suitable to your location. You would need long day onions, based on your location. In my Virginia location, I plant Intermediate-day onions. In the south, they need short-day onions. This is all based on the number of hours of sunlight you get in your area. Onions respond to daylight hours. It affects how soon they begin to bulb.

 

 

 

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Also, be sure you are planting onions suitable to your location. You would need long day onions, based on your location. In my Virginia location, I plant Intermediate-day onions. In the south, they need short-day onions. This is all based on the number of hours of sunlight you get in your area. Onions respond to daylight hours. It affects how soon they begin to bulb.

 

 

Thank You for the information. I have never heard about the length of day affecting the bulbing process. Now i'll have to go back thru the seed cataloges and read if they put that information in. Not that it will do much good... other than the multiplier onion.. i cannot remember what the name of the onions were. :busted: ( must be aging faster in the summer heat. me, not the onions..lol.) M.

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  • 1 month later...
  • 3 months later...

Wow, Homemaker, thank you for that information. I'll do it this coming spring. I would like to grown onions to store. Do you do that as well?

 

cleanheart

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  • 4 weeks later...

For large onions I have much better luck with onions started from seed rather than sets. Start the seeds indoors early so the plants are getting about 6" to 8" tall by the time you put them out. Make sure you look for "long day" varieties as mentioned above. Yellow and white sweet spanish, walla walla, and hybrid first edition (a great keeper) are the varieties that do best for me here in Wisconsin.

 

In order to help the onions store better you must let them cure properly before storing. As onion tops start to dry up and fall over in fall, go down the row and bend over the ones that aren't doing it naturally. I used to not want to do this, thinking that they would grow more but by that time of year the day length is getting shorter and they are done growing. Once they start to dry up you can pull them up and let them lay on top of the ground for a few days to finish drying. If the weather is wet then I bring them in the garage to dry, I built a 4'x8' frame and tacked chicken wire onto it and then set it on some saw bucks and spread the onions out on it with a fan blowing to help them dry.

 

When you cut the tops off the point where you cut should be dry and shriveled. Any that are still thick and moist should not be stored ( they wil start to sprout very quickly) I use those for chopping up and dehydrating or freezing. Store them in a cool and dark, but dry spot away from fruits that could pick up a flavor from the onions. Make sure that they have some air circulation around them, like in a mesh sack or in boxes in single layers. If you pile them up you will be apt to miss one if it goes bad. Every time I go to the cellar to get onions I give them a quick looking over to make sure to use up any that may be spoiling or spouting.

 

Well, sorry for being so long winded, hope it helps.

 

Jake

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