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Planting Onions

Onions. I have been told its best to put your onions in the same bed each this correct? Also do you put manure in or a general compost/fertilizer or nothing at all. No Growmore or fish blood and bone either?

The reason I ask is that last years crop were very disappointing and as usual I had rotated my crops

Many thanks


  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 17,244
    edited April 2019
    Onions need to be rotated to avoid onion rot. If you get onion rot, do not grow onion family in that soil for five years.  Onions like plenty of feed. I give them Calcified seaweed as well as home made compost and blood fish and bone.  In a rotation I put them after brassicas which are after legumes. They also like to be watered thoroughly once a week if it has not rained. Last year a lot of veg suffered through lack of water and too much heat.

  • d.coed.coe Posts: 15
    ok.....many thanks
  • SkandiSkandi Posts: 1,717
    Rotate onions, give them plenty of water  but not too much nitrogen. I would not take last year as a president as fidget said, last year was not typical at all.
  • NollieNollie Posts: 7,319
    I suppost it depends in what way they were disappointing - did they just not grow much at all, did you get lots of leafy growth but small or thick-necked bulbs?

    I’ve always rotated but never fed onions and normally get a good crop. I interplant with carrots, which don’t like it too rich. You can overfertilise, especially nitrogen as skandi says, so they go soft and don’t bulb up enough. They do follow the Solanaceae though, which get soil enrichment plus all that tomato feed. Perhaps I have enough goodness still hanging around from the year before....

    Dr Hessayon says ‘many exhibitors grow their show onions in a permanent bed to build up fertility’ but then goes on to say us mortals should rotate them. Maybe that was the source of the original advice you were given.
    Mountainous Northern Catalunya, Spain. Hot summers, cold winters.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,037
    edited April 2019
    @d.coe ... it’s not just you .... My brother is a large vegetable grower for the supermarkets. He said that the UK onion harvest was down hugely due to the drought last year.

    So it’s likely that you were doing nothing wrong ... hopefully we’ll get more ‘normal’ growing conditions this year ... whatever they are ... 😉 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • NollieNollie Posts: 7,319
    I have very hot summers. What is normal for me would be considered severe drought conditions in the UK. I have to water a lot. I put shade netting up when it gets too baking. Perhaps last year’s conditions in the UK is the new normal! Come over here and I’ll show you my onions  ;)
    Mountainous Northern Catalunya, Spain. Hot summers, cold winters.
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