Itching to Start Seeding?

Wednesday Feb 21 2018

Onions, leeks, celery and celeriac can all be started early indoors, about 8-12 weeks before planting out.

Starting onions from seed isn’t terribly difficult. Even if you start your onions too early, you’ll be able to snip off the tops and treat yourself to some early spring greens!

Seeding Onions
1) Fill a flat, cell pack or plug tray with regular potting soil or seed starting mix. Sow your seeds either in rows or bunches and cover with about a ¼″ of soil. Label and date your containers!
2) Onions are sometimes slow to germinate (7-21 days at a temperature of 10-30°C), so be patient and don’t allow the soil to dry out. (Leeks take about 7-14 days but require warmer temperatures of 20-25°C.)
3) Once seeds have germinated, keep in a sunny spot to continue growing. Give your onions a haircut (so they are no larger than 5” tall) and toss the trimmings into a soup or salad!
4) After 2-3 weeks, fertilize with diluted fish emulsion/kelp/seaweed or plant/compost tea.

Planting out & Harvesting Your Onions
1) Transplant seedlings to the garden in late April or early May as soon as soil can be worked. Make a furrow. Gently separate the seedlings and space about 6” apart.
2) Onions don’t compete well with weeds so keep your plot well weeded, watered and mulched.
3) After 90-110 days, your onion leaves will start to yellow. Bend them over to one side and keep an eye on the leaves. Once the leaves have died, pull the plant from the ground and leave the whole thing in the sun to dry (in dry weather) for a few days. This “cures” your onions and gets them ready for storage. Store your onions in a cold cellar in breathable or mesh bags.


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