Useful Tips For Harvesting Onions
Harvesting onions may be a lot easier than one may think initially. Onions have become extremely popular and are used in several different recipes. Some are sautéed with butter, while other are put directly into whatever you are cooking, such as meatloaf. Due to their addition of flavor, many have looked into growing and harvesting their own onions. Therefore, throughout this article we will examine all you need to know about harvesting onions to assist you with your gardening.
This first tip is sure to make you realize that harvesting your onions is extremely easy. These onions can be picked and even consumed at any time during the growing season. Obviously the longer you wait before picking them will ensure a larger, more developed onion. However, when a recipe only calls for part of an onion and you do not plan to use another within the next few days, it may be beneficial to pick it while it is still small. On the other hand, it is recommended that you allow the last batch before winter hits for the onions to become as large as possible before harvesting.
Now that we know you can pick the onions regardless of the size and whether they are still growing or not, let’s examine how to tell once they have reached their fullest potential. When harvesting onions you should look for two things: the leaves to completely lose their color and a flopped bulb. Just because you see a dying leaf does not mean that you are doing something wrong with your gardening; instead, it simply means your onions are ready to be picked and have reached their potential. How amazing is this fact? You no longer have to wonder when to pick your onions; now you have a very clear physical sign that lets you know when they have stopped growing.
You are able to leave the onions on the ground for a little over a week to help them completely mature; however, leaving them longer than this will make them susceptible to organisms that will rot your onions. It is also suggested that you pick them when the weather is nice and sunny and allow them to dry outside for up to 24 hours for best results. Note that the younger the onions are the milder the flavor, which is why most wait until full maturation before harvesting.
When harvesting onions, it is essential that you carefully loosen the soil and remove the onion. If you damage the onion during the harvesting process it is more likely to rot. Again, from here you will leave them on the ground to allow for up to ten days.
When storing these onions it is essential that they are not near other vegetables. Onions are very strong and your other vegetables may take in this odor and cause them to taste differently. If properly cured, onions can often be stored anywhere from one to eight months. Obviously the exact length of time they can be stored also depends upon the proper storing temperature and methods. Make sure to thoroughly research storing onions to get the most out of your crop.
In conclusion, harvesting onions is not as difficult as you might imagine. You can pick onions regardless of how big they are. The younger ones usually have a milder flavor, though, so if you want that particular flavor pick them when they are small. As a reminder, remember to carefully loosen the soil to avoid damaging your onion. Also, remember that it is easy to tell when they are ready to harvest; just look for leaves that have lost their color. With this advice, hopefully you will be able to pick your onions successfully and enjoy their great taste.