5 Tips How to Grow a Ton of Onions in One Container or Garden Bed

It's time to peel back the layers and
expose my secret to growing onions but before we do that just a quick safety
message… If you're going to have onions on a slice of bread or in a roll make
sure you put them underneath the sausage. Right, with that out the road g'day a I'm
Mark from Self Sufficient Me and in this video I want to show you guys my five
top tips on how to grow a ton of onions in a round raised garden bed such as
this…

Let's get into it. I like to grow our own onions because there's something special about a freshly harvested crispy onion and also we grow them without any
chemicals at all so they're organic and I think that makes a big difference
fresh and organic. Tip number one – preparing the garden bed. Onions just
like most veggies like a fertile free draining soil and as you know I love
growing in these raised garden beds not just because it's easier on the back
when preparing maintaining and harvesting your crop but it also allows
for excellent drainage which onions do enjoy and it helps prevent them from
rotting in ground particularly in hot humid climates you don't want to over
fertilize the soil before planting and I don't add any extra feed throughout
growing but I do prepare the bed with a generous covering of compost if I don't
have enough of my own I'll buy it and those bags pre-mixed with a little extra
fertilizer are perfect otherwise you can toss in a small handful of your own
fertilizer or well rotted manure such as chicken manure that has been composted
down and it's not too fresh but don't overdo it because if you give it too
much fertilizer especially at the beginning you're going to get a lot of
green tops and not much bulb I always like to add mulch as it reduces the
weeds especially when growing onions because it
can be tedious to weed between skinny onion plants and weeds will compete
heavily with them.

Sow shallow not too deep and cover lightly keeping the soil
moist until sprouting starts then water as required. Sow a generous amount of
onion seeds to allow for poor germination as you can always transplant
seedlings from areas that have germinated well to areas that are sparse.
In fact, in this bed I sowed two types of onions a brown and a red but the red
failed to come up the seed was a bit old I suspect so I simply transplanted my
excess Browns to fill the void. Tip number two – grow at the right time. Here
in our subtropical climate I like to sow our onion seeds towards the end of
autumn in fact the last month of autumn that way I get them coming up and
growing through winter through spring and then harvesting them at the end of
spring or just in the summer before the humidity hits and the summer rains hit.
Onions hate humidity it'll rot the bulbs it'll make them go slimy they won't grow
very well or they'll go to seed really early so if you're living in a warmer
climate sow them through the driest part of the
year in cold climates you've got a easier time growing onions because they
quite like cooler climates you sow them through spring or at the start of spring
and grow them right into summer and harvest them at the end of summer.

Tip
number three – grow the right type growing the right type of onion is probably more
important than growing at the right time although these two points are closely
related so let me explain I prefer to grow fast or early maturing varieties
because we grow them through winter when the days are the shortest at that time
of year the growth habit of onions is largely influenced by daylight hours and
depending on the variety they may not well or even fail completely if the
wrong type is grown at the wrong time for example late maturing varieties that
happen to be great keepers or lasts a long time in the pantry need long
daylight hours sometimes up to 15 hours per day whereas faster growing or
quicker bulbing varieties like these hunter River Browns only need around 10
hours of sunlight so when buying onion seeds think about your climate and
particularly the daylight hours at the time of year when you are growing them
then match that to the type of onion having said that I don't want to totally
deter you from trying different types of onions even the late maturing ones at
the wrong time of year because I can tell you I've grown all different types
of onions the late maturing ones at the wrong time of year and had some pretty
good successes so sometimes when the books say you can't give it a go anyway
because you'll be surprised at what you can grow also there are other ways of
kind of cheating as you may have noticed I have a different type of onion growing
in the middle here right in the center of these brown onions this is called an
Egyptian walking onions and it grows really well in hot climates it's a type
of bunching onion sure it doesn't bulb exactly like regular onions but they can
still be used in the same way and they taste great
once I harvest these brown onions and I'll do that soon in tip number five
these Egyptian onions will eventually take over the whole bed and give us
onions all the way through summer other easier to grow varieties such as
shallots which grow in clusters or spring onions can be just as useful as
an all-rounder for their own great flavor or as a substitute when larger
bulb types are difficult to grow.Tip number four – crowd them in now this might
seem counterintuitive because most onion
growers or experts will tell you that you should thin the onions out and
spread them out so good 25 centimeters apart
so that they have a chance to grow independently get bigger bulbs and
they'll grow better like that but that's not something that I do not by the book
anyway I will thin them out to an extent or more like spread them out if I see a
bunch of seedlings or grouped together or if I need to fill gaps as I said
earlier but in general the only thinning out we do is early harvesting for eating
as we go.

Look, if you want to thin them out and grow them by the book go for it
because that is a proven method of growing but I didn't make this one of my
top tips crowd growing for the sake of it I've made it because it does work
crowd growing onions like this in a raised bed means you can grow more in a
smaller space it helps to suppress weeds and it allows for earlier harvesting as
we'll discuss next. Tip number 5 – when to harvest you know this is a really
popular question about onions and rightly so because some people get
confused there's a few myths going around that you need to break the tops
of onions or bend them over to get them ready for maturing and curing but that's
not correct at all the truth is or the short answer is you can harvest onions
at any time especially when you're growing them like this and you're
naturally thinning them out as they grow so you're harvesting these immature
onions within a few weeks after sowing you're starting to harvest onions really
you know people call it thinning out and in a situation like this right up until
the maturing point which is now you are still selecting onions with the green
tops and they are just magic in cooking so harvest them at any time but when are
they really ready and mature you can tell see how the tops are just naturally
bending over some have gone to seed so that's a telltale sign…
the tops will start to die off it's not a disease or anything it's just the
normal growing progression some of them will go to seed usually the larger ones
will go to seed first and what I like to do is leave some of them go to seed you
only need one or two and they will become the seed for next year the next
season and the rest you just harvest so let's do that now and there you have it what a fantastic
harvest out of such a small size bed I'm really wrapped and now what I'll do is
I'll place these on our homemade drying rack in the Sun for about three to four
days and let them die off fully and crisp up and cure and then they'll be
perfect for storage in the pantry for the long term and to use over the next
several months so those were my five top tips on how to grow a ton of onions in a
small round raised garden bed just like this remember prepare the garden bed
grow at the right time grow the right type crowd them in and when to harvest
do all those things right and you'll grow a ton of onions just like I can if
you liked this video please give it a big green thumbs up and subscribe if you
haven't already thanks a lot for watching bye for now
unreal now all we need to do is cook up one of those sangas and whack the
sausage on top of those onions so we cover all those OH&S issues see ya You Rippa…

;).

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