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Square Foot Gardening Forum
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Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

onion sets I22gcj10onion sets 14dhcg10

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Post  model a man 1/25/2011, 6:55 pm

I just bought 2 onion sets with 80 in each bag. one yellow onions and one red onions. do I just plant them and how will I know when I can pull them up to eat them? also I was going to buy some garlic bulbs, the bag said 4 plants and they looked like regular garlic. would you plant them whole or break them apart and plant each clove? I live in the So Cal area
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Post  Megan 1/25/2011, 7:12 pm

I'm a newb at this, but here's what I've got:

You break up the garlic and plant each clove, but do that only right before you plant them. I have about half of mine planted and the rest waiting for a little later this spring...I will probably lose some in storage but that's ok.

As for onions... I planted sets like yours last year and was surprised when they didn't grow as much as I expected. I think maybe they will be more for next year than this year, though I did get some about an inch across. Also, this fall I planted some potato onion and Egyptian (walking) onion sets and am very hopeful about what I may get from them.
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Post  ribsyhuggins 1/25/2011, 7:23 pm

megan what will happen to your onions if you let them stay in ground till next year,is they will go to seed.

A secret i got from a seed vendor is to treat onions as a leaf crop instead of root crop. In that they like a good nitrogen feed.

Also you want the plant to be as big as possible before they reach there day length requirement which triggers bulb formation.
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Post  kimbertangleknot 1/25/2011, 7:29 pm

Can you start onions and garlic in the very early spring to harvest them for fall/winter use? Or would a southern North Carolina summer ruin them?
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Post  middlemamma 1/25/2011, 7:34 pm

PLANT YOUR GARLIC POINTY END UP!!!!

I planted whole bulbs of garlic last year...now THAT was an interesting, albeit HILLARIOUS thread.

https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t3570-sometimes-learning-is-stinky-don-t-laugh

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Post  Megan 1/25/2011, 7:42 pm

@kimbertangleknot wrote:Can you start onions and garlic in the very early spring to harvest them for fall/winter use? Or would a southern North Carolina summer ruin them?

Kimber, the instructions I got from SESE told me that it was perfectly acceptable to hold over some of the seed onions and garlic for early spring planting (as early as ground can be worked.) In fact, they recommended it as a way to help avoid total crop failure if the fall plantings didn't work out. I don't know how that translates into North Carolina.

What I saw was that my onions did kind of poorly over the summer, but then perked back up as fall came on. I don't know if they were long day or short day onions, and also they were shaded out quite a bit, so probably not their fault but mine. There are are quite a few in the ground still. I started out with around 80+ onion sets or so... I was trying to plant them everywhere as companion plants, go figure! A bunch died, and I ate some. The ones that remain seem fine and are frozen in... the stalks are still green, what's left of them.

I planted my onion sets in May last year (read: Snowmageddon!!) so that may be one reason why I didn't have good onions last fall....maybe not enough time. I just don't know.


Last edited by Megan on 1/25/2011, 7:45 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Post  camprn 1/25/2011, 7:42 pm

@model a man wrote:I just bought 2 onion sets with 80 in each bag. one yellow onions and one red onions. do I just plant them and how will I know when I can pull them up to eat them?
Plant per Mel's recommendations or as close as you are comfortable. Onions can be heavy feeders and do like water. You will know when your onions are ready for harvest when the foliage begins to die back. If they start sending out flower stalks, prune the flower stalks off.

@model a man wrote:also I was going to buy some garlic bulbs, the bag said 4 plants and they looked like regular garlic. would you plant them whole or break them apart and plant each clove? I live in the So Cal area

As Megan said, when ready for planting, break the bulb apart into separate cloves and space per Mel's recommendations or as close as you are comfortable.

Click Here <~~previous thread about garlic.
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Post  camprn 1/25/2011, 7:57 pm

@ribsyhuggins wrote:megan what will happen to your onions if you let them stay in ground till next year,is they will go to seed.
Not necessarily, depending upon where you live.
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Post  camprn 1/25/2011, 7:58 pm

@middlemamma wrote:PLANT YOUR GARLIC POINTY END UP!!!!
Jen
This is the BEST advice! Very Happy
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Post  Rolanaj 1/26/2011, 12:34 am

I was really surprised last year when I found onions going to seed in my garden from the year before. I found them quite by accident as the whole garden was left to go wild and not even mowed. It gets quite cold here I had no idea they would survive the winter.
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Post  nancy 1/26/2011, 10:01 am

Last year I pulled my onions when the leaves began to fall over. I figured this was their way to tell me they were ready. If I remember right, I had 8 per square.

As for garlic, I planted the whole head last fall. We'll see what I get. I might try again this spring for a fall crop.
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Post  kellyalley 1/26/2011, 6:14 pm

I have to recommend checking out youtube for a visual on planting just about anything. THere are a ton of ppl that are doing self help videos on almost everything. I just watched one on planting garlic and potatoes in containers...very cool. They have SFG ones too. Smile
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Post  miinva 1/26/2011, 6:31 pm

I would love it if you'd post a link to the videos you watched, kellyalley, I'm interested in doing some container gardening with the kids at my son's school.
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