Onions have the distinction of being one of the oldest cultivated plants in recorded history. Although it is unclear where they originated, it is believed to have been Asia. We do know that the ancient Egyptians ate them commonly, as there is an inscription on one of the Great Pyramids stating that a sum amounting to “1600 talents” had been paid for onions, radishes and garlic to feed the workers who were building it.
Onions are a good source of vitamin C, potassium and calcium and contain a variety of beneficial phytochemicals. The green leaves are rich in vitamin A.
Height: 10″ – 14”
Optimum Soil Ph: 6.0 to 7.0
Days To Maturity: 55
Sowing Method: Directly Outdoors
Prepare the soil in the vegetable garden. Loosen the row for the bunching onions by turning it with a garden spade. Incorporate peat moss and compost by putting a 1-inch layer of each on top of the soil. Dig them in by turning the soil with a shovel a second time. Rake the row smooth when you’re finished.
Make a small furrow the length of the row with the end of the handle of your garden trowel.
Plant bunching onion seeds by sprinkling them into the furrow. Push soil over the top of the seeds so they are buried 1/4 to 1/2 inch deep. Firm the soil with your hand or the back of a hoe.
Water the newly planted seeds with a hose nozzle set to a fine mist. Check the seed row daily, and mist as necessary to keep the soil moist until the seeds germinate in approximately seven to 14 days.
Thin the seedlings to stand 1 inch apart when they are approximately 2 to 3 inches high. Use the thinned onion seedlings the same way you would use chives.
Water the onions regularly if rainfall is scarce. Ensure they receive 1 1/2 inches of water per week.
Spray the foliage with water-soluble, all-purpose fertilizer every 10 to 14 days, beginning when the seedlings are 6 inches high. Mix the fertilizer with water, and apply it to the foliage with a hose-end sprayer. Spray the plants early in the morning so they can dry before exposure to the midday sun.
Harvest bunching onions when they reach the diameter of a pencil. Grasp the onion close to the ground, and pull straight upward. Remove every other onion when harvesting. The space you leave between onions will enable those in the ground to continue growing.