Onions in autumn

There’s nothing like ignorance to get you through, is there? And my ignorance when it comes to overwintering onions is … profound. So far I’ve managed to find out that:

Onion sets are planted with the point at the top and the roots at the bottom and with the pointy bit level with the soil. They need to go into either very well-tilled soil or, if they are going into clay or less well worked ground, you need to dig or dib a little hole for them as they can easily be damaged by being pushed into the ground.

Unlike other plants, the smaller sets can actually be more productive because the bigger they are the greater the likelihood of bolting.

Pigeons and starlings (and in our area, seagulls) all have the habit of pecking the tops off the growing sets or just pulling them out of the ground. This year, rather than netting them, I’m going to try covering them with that weird and wonderful Scaraweb that somebody gave me (looks like Father Christmas crashlanded on the allotment and left his beard behind) but if the pesky pigeons do strike, I shall immediately go for a netting tent approach instead.

And so tomorrow - in go the onions!

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Posted by The Allotment Blogger on Wednesday, October 1, 2008

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