Any harm to leaving onions in the ground?

vickima(z5 MA)August 9, 2010

I've been growing copra onions for several years, and have always followed the instructions to "harvest when most of the tops have fallen over." Well they are starting to fall over now, and it occurred to me (eureka!) that I may not *have* to harvest them right now.

Is there any harm in leaving them in the ground awhile? First, I'd like to get their maximum growth, and second, I'm looking for a couple days with no chance of rain so I can sun cure them before moving them indoors where I'll dry them some more.

I've already been taking a few here and there to eat, but most of these are for storage.

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I leave my onions in the ground until the neck is very soft and the leaves are no longer feeding the bulb. Many times I've left them much longer with no problems.


    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 3:37PM
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vickima(z5 MA)

Thanks Tom, that's good to know. I'll leave them in the ground awhile longer then.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 5:39PM
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Mark(Oregon, Zone 8)

As far as I know the only harm from leaving them in the ground after the tops have fallen is that they could get sun-scald.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2010 at 7:42PM
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I have had issues with wireworms entering the onion through the root end when I have left them in the ground after they stopped growing. Then the onion starts to rot.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2010 at 10:47AM
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IF you leave them in the ground too long and you get a lot of rain they may start growing again.I have had this happen a time or two.Also once the tops fall over the bulb will not get any bigger. YOPPER

    Bookmark   August 15, 2010 at 10:52AM
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