Onion Harvest after Rain

qbush(6, NE MA)July 24, 2013

I am new to onions. Tryng to raise 100lbs this year, LOL.

I have harvested Red Marble Cippolini because two thirds had fallen over, and a row of Copra to clear bed. My bed of Patterson is starting to fall, soil WAS dry, and yesterday brought in a lot of rain. How long should I wait to pull? Does the heavy soaking we got yesterday mean I should wait?

Also, how much top should I leave on as they dry? I want those green tops to mulch carrots, as an experiment to prevent CRF. How much do the onions need? I am GOING to run out of curing space.

BTW got lots of great advice here last year! Thanks!!!

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Mark(Oregon, Zone 8)

For starters, i'd leave all the tops on while curing. Cutting anything off can lead to infection that will keep your onions from storing well. If you really want to cut some for the experiment, go easy and be sure to eat those onions first.

As far as the rain. Persistent moisture while onions are finishing up can cause splitting and various mold/mildew issues. One soaking may not be a huge problem as onions keep sizing up from when the start to fall till they are all down, which usually takes a few weeks. Some moisture at this time is helpful.
If they are really wet or more rain is predicted, you could pull one every day to check for problems. Then pull them all if necessary.
-Mark

    Bookmark   July 24, 2013 at 12:45PM
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qbush(6, NE MA)

THANK You so much Mark! I pulled a couple for dinner tonight, the kitchen drawer was out. Mine are not as large as yours, but DH gave me a big thumbs up for flavor.

Um what kind of problems might I see? ( other than a 210 lb onion eater :) Only my second year growing onions...

    Bookmark   July 24, 2013 at 10:01PM
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Mark(Oregon, Zone 8)

Mostly watch for basal rot at the root plate and any core rot (black stuff inside the onion or at the neck). Also you could get some surface mold issues on the outer skin.

As i'm sure you're used to what a normal onion looks like inside and out, t'll be pretty obvious.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2013 at 2:06AM
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