overwintering onions

jeaninmt(3a)October 28, 2012


This may sound crazy, but I am slightly crazy and it keeps me busy. An onion plant that has been growing for years in our greenhouse finally had its seed spread by our son. I thought it was a green onion plant. Then this Fall while I was pulling out chickweed, there was a bunch of small bulbs. The bulbs are maybe 2" across at the biggest and thumbnail size at the smallest.

I would really like to be able to overwinter these and plant them next year in the hopes of getting seed. I planted 4 of the biggest ones in the garlic patch. Now I am thinking about some of the smaller ones. It seems like they will dry up and wither away, being tiny. Do you think they would winter over better if I planted them in gallon pots and kept them in the crawl space over the winter ? It is about 45 degrees. Or replant a few in the greenhouse, which drops to 0 - 10 degrees over the winter.

The outside patch is mulched with 4-6" of straw. Outside temps drop to -15 -20.

Thanks for any ideas, Jean in Mt

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Jean, I can't answer your questions, but I do have one of my own on this topic. Last year I missed picking a few onions in the fall, and they lived through what was an admittedly extremely mild winter here in Iowa. I was surprised at this. Are you telling me that in a normal Montana winter you overwinter onions?

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 6:56PM
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These particular onions were in our solar greenhouse, it is about zone 5 or so. There have been other onions that sprouted and grew in the garden in the Spring. I think that it depends on getting a snow cover of 6" or so before the hard freezes hit. In those cases the ground never freezes and we get all sorts of volunteers in the Spring.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2013 at 11:02AM
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