Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Time to Plant Onions

Whether from plants or seed it is time to plant onions. We plant about 15,000 onions and leek plants each April. The first step is to...

lay down a generous strip of organic fertilizer. We then cover the fertilizer with a 12 inch wide and 4 inch deep mini-bed of compost. We then plant the onion plants 4 inches apart in a double row.

This approach provides the rich environment that onions love. Onions spend the first 6-8 weeks of their growth as green plants and need soil rich in nitrogen. By the end of June the onions start their root enlargement and will soon reach the size of softballs. The more leaves the onions have by June the larger the onions will be, for it is the base of each leaf that form the onion.

The compost provides an excellent weed barrier and a low sulfur growth medium for super sweet onions. Onions are sensitive to weed pressure so hand weed in the rows and weed between the rows with a tiller.  The compost also makes a very high quality onion that will store up to 9 months.

We have grown onions like this for a decade with great success.

This approach also works well with onions from seed.

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