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Onion Ripening Time

Posted by mr_grizzly TX 9A (My Page) on
Thu, Mar 26, 09 at 21:58

I have a patch of white onions in the ground, don't ask the variety. I have had them in the ground since October 22. The stalks are tall and green. I'm starting to get worried as they don't show any of the signs of ripening I have read about. I am wondering when they should start to flower or fall over. I should think it would be soon. Does aynone have any ideas, or tips to speed it up a bit?

Thanks
-Colby


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Onion Ripening Time

Colby,
Do you at least know if they are short day onions? If you planted sets, they are most likely long day onions and will not bulb or be very small. I plant several short day onions from seed. The plants are starting to form bulbs now and the Granex mature and fall over in April.

Michael


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RE: Onion Ripening Time

  • Posted by grandad usu-9a LA/Sunt28 (My Page) on
    Mon, Mar 30, 09 at 14:12

Colby,

Onions should be bulbing now as Michael noted. Following is a current picture of my Granex 33 Hybrid. They look to be about 2 to 3 weeks from harvest. Can you post a picture?

Photobucket

Photobucket


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RE: Onion Ripening Time

Grandad,
Nice looking onions. Mine are deeper and I have to pull some dirt back to see the bulbs. What kind of garlic is that to the left of the onions? How does it grow for you in your zone 9a? I trying several types here in Central Florida. Do you have to prechill the bulbs before planting to get them to form bulbs? About when do you harvest your garlic?

Thanks, Michael


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RE: Onion Ripening Time

  • Posted by grandad usu-9a LA/Sunt28 (My Page) on
    Tue, Mar 31, 09 at 14:00

Michael, thanks for the compliment on the onions. I do not know what type of garlic I planted. I picked up garlic bulbs at the local produce market last October for 25 cent each. I then separated and planted the outer cloves (no prechilling). The dirt you see in the front of the garlic is the first planting. A couple of weeks later I planted more cloves and this is what is shown as remaining in the picture. I probably will dig these in about a week.

It woould have been nice to know the variety. Instead, I took the quick-and-simple (and blind) approach.


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RE: Onion Ripening Time

Grandad,
Are you saying you already pulled garlic from the front section that is just dirt now? If so, how big were the bulbs? How big have your garlic bulbs been in the past? I'm trying to learn how to grow garlic here in the hot south. Any advice would be helpful. I pulled some Red Toch garlic today(and a few over the past 2 weeks). I probably should have pulled it before now, but they were so small. Some only had 2-3 green leaves left so it had to come out. The bulbs ranged from about 1.25 to 1.625 inches. I have other types that are not ready to pull yet and may turn out larger.


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RE: Onion Ripening Time

  • Posted by grandad usu-9a LA/Sunt28 (My Page) on
    Thu, Apr 2, 09 at 9:28

Michaelc0, most of the garlic bulbs are about 2 inches. Some were a bit smaller. I did have quite a few separate underground before digging (top right and bottom middle). My guess is that this particular cultivar is not the best one for my area.

Photobucket


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RE: Onion Ripening Time

grandad,
WOW! Those look nice and BIG. My guess is that you waited to long to harvest the ones that seperated. I hope mine will get that big. Got any advice you can pass on to me on garlic growing?

Thanks, Michael


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RE: Onion Ripening Time

  • Posted by grandad usu-9a LA/Sunt28 (My Page) on
    Thu, Apr 2, 09 at 12:55

Michaelc0, I initially had thought that I waited too late to dig the bulbs, but after making an underground examination bulbs it looked to me like separation occurred befoe they were ready to be dug. It's possible the trigger was related to weather. In any case when it comes to usability, the separated bulbs are just as good as the others.

Pertaining to advice on garlic growing .... I'm in Sunset Zone 28, you're in Sunset Zone 26. I simply plant in October and November and harvest in April. But this might not work for your area.

I found a few web references that imply growing garlic in the deep south can be a bit of a challenge. However, it can be done as the link below indicates. I did find a link to Florida vegetable gardening planting guide, but it did not provide a specific dates for when to planting garlic.

You might also try a "What cultivar and when to garlic posting?" posting on the Florida Gardening forum.

Here is a link that might be useful: A Reference on Growing Garlic in the Deep South


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RE: Onion Ripening Time

Grandad - Thanks for your help... wish me luck!


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RE: Onion Ripening Time

Thanks for the information. I have checked the bulbs of the onions and they are about 2 1/2 to 3" wide. I also started seeing flower stalks yesterday. This seems to be a good sign so far.
Also, does anyone know when top-set onions are supposed to produce the top-sets?

-Colby


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RE: Onion Ripening Time

Colby,
Glad to hear the onions are bulbing for you. What a difference 9 days makes. Make sure you eat the onions that form flower stalks first, as they will not store well. Did you plant sets, seeds or buy transplants back in Oct'08. Onions should not flower in the first year of growth, only grow bulbs. (Sets do that often because they think they are in their second year)

Michael


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