Onions

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Onions

Postby Chip » Wed Feb 22, 2012 9:14 am

In my quest to become self sufficient one thing stands in my way. Onions. Am i better off just planting a sprouting onion? I've done this before and it sprouted pretty quickley and eventually turned into 5 or 6 shallot sized onions. If i had left them longer would they have fully developed?

Seeds are really what im interested in. I get the initial sprout but just cant get them to survive like the other seedlings.

Any help would be appreciated.
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Re: Onions

Postby karyn » Wed Feb 22, 2012 5:07 pm

I can grow green onions (we call them 'spring onions' but I've been told the correct name is 'green onions!') easily from seed but I struggle with the biggies. I have also bought them in a punnet, and the bulbs wouldn't develop - they just sort of swelled a bit and stayed that way, then went to seed. So don't despair, I'm in the 'onion failure' corner with you!
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Re: Onions

Postby greg.l » Wed Feb 22, 2012 5:49 pm

The old saying is to plant onions on the shortest day and harvest them on the longest day. I don't know if that works in QLD.
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Re: Onions

Postby goldbullion » Thu Feb 23, 2012 9:05 pm

For Brisbane, I think more important than the time of year is the right variety of onion. You need a variety that is a short day. The brown onions that you buy at the shops are long day varieties and they won't bulb up in Brisbane. Unfortunately many seed packets don't specify this on the packet. I'd suggest you'd have better luck with Gladalan brown/white or Lockyer white varieties.
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Re: Onions

Postby karyn » Sat Feb 25, 2012 10:27 am

More info please Goldbullion...I've never heard of this long day/short day... Have you a suggestion for a good brown onion for Adelaide, hot Summers, cold Winters, bugger all rain!?
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Re: Onions

Postby goldbullion » Thu Mar 01, 2012 9:50 pm

Karyn, growing long keeping onions in SA should not be a problem based on your climate. The short day onion is more relevant in subtropical/tropical areas where the day length doesn't vary as much during the year.
For a brief explanation, Annette McFarlane has a note in her onion PDF. Or better still get her organic vegetable growing book. Still one of the best succinct reference books around.
http://www.annettemcfarlane.com/Stories/Onions.pdf
Hope that helps.
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