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Growing Organic Onions

Growing Organic Onions

Mary Smith |

Plant onion seeds about 3/8 inch deep and 1/2 inches apart. Rows should be about 15 inches apart. Once seedlings emerge, then to about every 3inches.
Some say it is best to choose a type of onion best suited for your area:  Northern US: Long Day. Southern US: Short Day.
However, others say they grow many types of Onions just fine.  Bunching onions grow well in all regions.
Depending on what type of onion you’re growing, will depend on the sunlight they require. Provide onions with 12 – 16 hours, depending on long day or short day onion.

The best soil for onions has organic material and neutral pH. (If your onions are too strong, the soil may be too acidic.) Onions like well drained soils, and the organic matter in the soil helps. 
Onions like more water initially as they grow. As they mature, onions do not require as much water. Depending on how much rain you get, they may be okay with just rainwater. Just make sure they get some kind of water every 3-4 days.
Mulch will help maintain the right soil moisture level and reduce weeds. Remember, onions don’t like weeds. Weeds and onion, both, compete over the same soil nutrients. When weeding, be careful not to disturb the onion’s root system.

Maturity rates vary with each type of onion from 65 days to 115 days.  Onions should be harvested in the morning, but avoid any morning dew on them. Lay them in row to cure or air dry for a few days. But place them in the shade. The onions can actually sunburn.
Ailsa Craig Onion

Companion Plants for Onion:
Planting chamomile and summer savory with onions improves their flavor. Other companions are carrot, leek, beets, kohlrabi, strawberries, brassicas, dill, lettuce and tomatoes. Intercropping onions and leeks with your carrots confuses the carrot and onion flies! Onions planted with strawberries help the berries fight disease. Keep onions away from peas and asparagus.
Happy Planting!!!
We hope you have enjoyed yet another informative growing article here at Mary's Heirloom Seeds.  If you have additional questions please ask!


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1 comment

Hi Mary,
I live in Newberry, FL (located just west of Gainesville).
I made a last minute decision to plant a fall/winter vegetable garden – oh, did I mention the last time I grew a vegetable was a carrot patch in childhood (and I’m now in my 50’s), so I don’t have anything in place, and no knowledge base – ugh!

So I ordered four raised planter beds from Amazon, I will be assembling them tomorrow. (If you’re wondering why I’m messaging you at almost 4am – I am a nurse who works nights).

My raised beds are 6ft x 3ft x 1 foot deep.

So many questions, so many questions….

1. Once the raised beds are assembled and I choose a full sun spot in the back yard do I need to dig the grass out of that 6×3 area? The planter beds are bottomless.
2. I have no idea what recipe of soil to put in them. So confused!
3. I only want heirloom seeds, so I need to get em ordered asap. I’m so excited!
4. Why don’t you live closer to me???? I feel so alone in this endeavor and really wish I had a gardening buddy to bounce things off of.

I really want my garden to be a success, any help would be appreciated. :-)

Thanks so much!

Karen Day,

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