Onions are a versatile crop that can be used in a variety of dishes. They are relatively easy to grow, but there are a few things to keep in mind when planting and harvesting onions. In this blog post, Dax Cooke shares some tips on how to grow onions successfully. Whether you are a beginner farmer or have been growing onions for years, we hope you find this information helpful!
Dax Cooke’s Tips For Growing Onions (Plant Care And Harvesting)
Tip 1: Choose a location that gets 6 to 8 hours of full sun each day, says Dax Cooke. Onions are warm-weather plants and need lots of sunlight to grow optimally. Make sure the soil is well-draining and not prone to standing water or flooding. If you don’t have an area with natural drainage, consider planting in raised beds or mounded rows.
Tip 2: Avoid planting onions where other onion family members, such as garlic, leeks, shallots, scallions, and chives, have recently grown, as this can introduce pest and disease issues for your crop. Additionally, rotating crops by choosing areas free from other Onion family growth will help reduce potential problems in future harvests.
Tip 3: Plant onion sets, bulbs, or seeds in early spring as soon as the soil can be worked. Onions are planted at a shallow depth – about 1 inch deep – and should be spaced 4 to 6 inches apart. When grown from seed, plant the onions ¼ to ½ inch deep and thin them out once they have become established.
Tip 4: Keep your onions well-watered during their growth cycle. This will help ensure that they grow big and plump instead of stringy or small. Water your onions when the top 2 inches of soil has dried up to avoid overwatering, which can cause your crop to rot or attract pesky garden pests like slugs and snails.
Tip 5: Mulching around your onions can help keep weeds down, conserve soil moisture, and prevent the need to hoe or cultivate around them. Mulch also helps keep the bulbs cool – which is helpful during warmer months when the soil temperature rises. Try using straw or wood chips as mulch for the best results.
Tip 6: Fertilize your plants periodically throughout their growth cycle with a balanced fertilizer such as 10-10-10 or an organic fertilizer like compost or manure tea. Use according to the directions on the label to ensure you don’t over-fertilize and cause damage to your onion crop.
Tip 7: Harvest your onions once they reach full size, and the tops of the leaves begin to turn yellow and fall over. Dax Cooke recommends cutting off the tops of the onions, leaving about an inch length of stem attached to the bulb. Use a garden fork or shovel to carefully lift them from the soil and brush off any excess dirt. Let your freshly harvested onions cure in the sun for several hours before storing or using them.
Dax Cooke’s Concluding Thoughts
By following these tips by Dax Cooke, you will be well on your way to growing a successful onion crop in your backyard garden! Enjoying harvest-fresh onions is worth all of the efforts you’ll put into caring for them – good luck!