pieheart(6)June 3, 2007

I made a rice pilaf today with shallots as one of the ingredients. The shallot was 79 cents! For one! Okay, I haven't bought shallots for years, but the recipe called for it. Usually I substitute scallions, onion, leeks, whatever. But for once I used what the recipe called for.

Anyway, my son loved the pilaf. Amazing! He's not my picky eater, his older brother wears that hat. But he's particular. So next year I want to grow shallots. I'm sure it's too late for this year.

Do I plant seeds? In the fall or spring, directly sown? I don't seem to have luck growing onions indoors and transplanting, so I'm hoping I can plant directly outdoors.

Also, are there varieties that would do better in my zone? Or any other info? If it's not against the rules to mention, any reputable vendors?

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I'm in southern NJ and I simply bought a couple bags of Shallots from Produce Junction (don't know if these stores exist where you are) for $2 and planted the bulbs in October. With shallots, you want to plant the smaller bulbs as the larger ones won't produce large bulbs. Planting bulbs is probably the easiest way to grow shallots, that's why I mention it.

If you want to sow seeds directly in the outdoor bed, you can do that too. I'd start your seeds in September so they can grow for a while before winter sets in. Shallots laugh at our winters and will grow and form bulbs for you in the spring/summer with harvest usually coming in July when the leaves begin to die back.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2007 at 8:20AM
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Thanks njbeeman! We don't have any Produce Junctions in our area, never heard of them. But you did give me an idea to post to the nj forum, and also to ask at a local organic farm where to get bulbs for our zone and conditions. They might even have some available later in the season I could buy from them.

We have a garlic festival in the fall. I think it's early October. Typically, can you find shallot bulbs there (at garlic festivals in general)? And if I do, is it too late to plant by then?

    Bookmark   June 5, 2007 at 7:31AM
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Where is this garlic festival in nwnj? I live in nj, but close to nyc, but I'm guessing that I wouldn't have to drive very far.


    Bookmark   June 5, 2007 at 9:53AM
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flutesee, here's a link for more info.

Here is a link that might be useful: garlic festival

    Bookmark   June 5, 2007 at 10:03AM
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>Thanks njbeeman!

You're welcome.

>We have a garlic festival in the fall. I think it's early >October. Typically, can you find shallot bulbs there (at >garlic festivals in general)? And if I do, is it too late to >plant by then?

That's probably the BEST place to find some shallot bulbs and early October is the PERFECT time to plant them (along with garlic and onions, by the way). I'd encourage you to consider picking up a few interesting garlics at the festival and plant those bulbs as well. With garlic, you want to plant the largest bulbs possible. With shallots, it's the exact opposite, you want to plant the smallest bulbs. Enjoy!

    Bookmark   June 5, 2007 at 10:54AM
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Thank you so much! I'll have to wait until then, and see what neat varieties I can acquire at the festival.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2007 at 12:10PM
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We are in Central NJ and have attended the garlic fests. a couple of times. This is where we bought our first "seed" garlic. There is a fellow there by the name of Roman who farms several acres of garlic in Northen NJ. He is a very informative, talkative guy and will assist you in any information you would need. When planning on attending tyhe fest., plan on leaving smelling like GARLIC! LOL.
BTW, we also planted shallots this past fall along with our garlic. The shallots are being pulled now and the garlic Hmm, maybe another couple of weeks. Good luck with all your efforts. It's really neat to see your efforts come together and your friends really appreciate it when you hand them a couple of bulbs of your own, grown garlic!

    Bookmark   June 19, 2007 at 4:38PM
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humpbacks1962(Connecticut, 6)

I planted mine early in May and harvested some this last weekend, for vinagrette. Mixed with garlic scapes... YUM!

    Bookmark   June 19, 2007 at 8:19PM
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Dang. We need a garlic festival here in Colorado.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2007 at 4:06PM
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I was just wondering when to dig up my shallots and I believe you have answered my question. How soon can I replant shallots? Do I have to wait till fall?

    Bookmark   June 30, 2007 at 1:59AM
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The BEST time to plant shallots and garlic is definetly in the Fall. Around mid-October. Harvest shallots mid-June and garlic early to mid-july. Of course this is when ever they are ready, depending on weather, etc.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2007 at 4:05PM
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I found out that one of the nurseries around here, Tagawa's, DOES have a garlic festival in September. I'll have to remember that.

I would love to go to the Gilroy Garlic Festival someday.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2007 at 7:10PM
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fishymamas(z9, So. CA)

I used to live 40 mins north of the Gilroy, my sister's birthday party was always the same weekend as the festival, when you wlked outside you could taste garlic in the air. Darn, now I'm gonna go make garlic bread.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 6:10PM
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I have a brother who lives in Princeton Junction, what, if any, garlic festivals are around where he lives? The two festivals, Lafayette and Morristown are over an hour away from Princeton Junction. Are there ones any closer?

Thanks in advance.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2007 at 7:12AM
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Hi everyone - I live in Flemington, NJ and have tried & failed miserably at growing garlic. I was successful w/ shallots (once), but I actually planted them in the April/May timeframe about 4 years ago and harvested them in the fall -ever since that beginner's luck venture I have not been able to get a harvest, nor plant at the right time. If someone could please confirm the following for me, I'd be ever-grateful:

1) Both shallots & garlic should be planted in the OCTOBER timeframe, yes? These will overwinter and then re-emerge in the spring so I can harvest in the summer (June/July) - correct?

2) Shallots - smallest bulbs possible, Garlic - largest bulbs possible, yes?

3) In the past I bought the shallots/garlic from either a nursery pre-packaged or ordered from a Gurney's or other online nursery. Can anyone recommend an online nursery to purchase from for a fall shipment/planting (not sure if I can make the festivals, as much as I'd love to)?

4) I tried both garlic & shallots this year AGAIN - I put my garlic in probably in May - mid-May - it came up a bit, but has done NOTHING for weeks now - is this typical due to the weather/heat or do I just have a black-thumb where garlic/shallots are concerned (shallots didn't even sprout!)? :o( Also - can I leave those bulbs in for a 2008 harvest? I know they'd be in the ground for over a year, so I wasn't sure if that would do more harm than good or at the very least make them inedible.

5) How important is the soil condition for alliums? I have sort of heavy, clay soil - reddish in color but the county I live in offers free compost so I can easily remedy this. I have added tons of compost to my garden already but I can focus specifically on the allium area if it will make that much of a difference.

6) Can anyone advise me on how to 'cure' them so I can store for the winter? I love to cook & tend to replace any onion w/ a shallot (not a fan of onions but I like the flavor of shallots - go figure). So, having these on hand will be wonderful.

Sorry for all the questions - I really want to master these crops!

Thank you!

    Bookmark   July 18, 2007 at 8:11AM
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Hi nick1208, you are correct on all your questions. You should most definatly pick up a big pile of that free compost and turn in to your garden soil. If you have the room to keep the garlic and shallots you planted this year to see what happens for 2008, what the heck. About 2 weeks before you plant your garlic and shallots this FALL mix some 10-10-10 fertilizer into the bed ( about 3 lbs. per 100 sq. ft.)
Alliums LOVE organic compost so mix in plenty!
I cure my alliums by braiding them and hanging them in my garage, where it's warm and good air movement until the covering on the edible portion is papery ( about 3-4 weeks) You hang the whole plant. But, let's get you growing first and then we can talk about when to pull them (next year) and how to cure, etc. so, first thing... get plenty of that free compost and start digging...

    Bookmark   July 19, 2007 at 5:52PM
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