Most gardeners use onions in some form. You may fry them to add to meat dishes, cut them into salads, use them as a topping for pizzas or eat them as springers and whole onions. Think how many onions you buy. Well, you could be growing most of your needs.
Onion production starts with seedlings from your garden centers or seeds sown in trays at home. You could direct sow the onion seeds in the garden but it?s probably best to start them somewhere else. Now, don?t be tempted by the onion sets unless all you want is fresh scallions to pull from the garden. You could be pulling these in about a month but they do not form the really big bulbs.
Start this crop by getting the right variety of onion if you want to grow the big ones. Florida is a bit different and our onions begin bulbing under short days of February or March. They then mature their big bulbs by May. Some good varieties to look for are Granex, Grano and Pumba. Each can produce good size onions but it takes about 180 days.
Plant the seeds in a tray of a potting soil. They only need an inch or two of soil to grow the transplants. Scatter the seeds and cover them lightly. Keep in a sunny site and moist. Feed every other week with a half strength water soluble fertilizer solution. The transplants should be ready for the garden in about 6 weeks.
Provide onions with a sunny garden site. Some have done well with a little shade but full sun is best. Loosen the soil and remove the weeds and you are ready to plant. Some gardeners like to add organic matter and manure. This can help with the onion plant care but sands do grow good onions too. Now, add the transplants. Space them 2- to 3-inches apart. As they start to grow, you can harvest some as they become congested. Keep the soil moist and feed every 3 to 4 weeks with a general garden fertilizer made for vegetables.
Onions won?t mind the winter weather and should start to bulb in late February or early March. When the tops decline they are ready to dig, Clean the onions of soil and let them air-dry in a shady spot for a few days. Then put them under home conditions to store until needed.
It is that easy.