Onion Growing thread, 2019


Joined
May 6, 2018
Messages
23
Reaction score
11
Location
Southern California
Hardiness Zone
9b
Country
United States
I live in southern California in the desert climate and I just planted some sweet Spanish yellow Utah jumbo onions in the little starter containers (21 little planters). It still gets cool in the evenings (in the 40s) and up to around 65-70 during the day but soon it'll be getting hot (usually well over 100 degrees every day). We just got a massive rainstorm (very rare here) and so all of the containers filled up with water and the potting soil is totally saturated. Will that kill the onions???

Forgive me but I'm very new to gardening and almost everything I try ends in death and destruction (hence my "black thumb" screen name). I get the impression that I should have planted these last fall but I just went by the information on the packet of seeds. Should I write these off and try again this fall or what?

Thanks.

Mike
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Mar 26, 2013
Messages
2,702
Reaction score
1,137
Location
Cheshire
Country
United Kingdom
When you sow onions depends on your latitude, as they react to light and different types react to different day length, although there is some overlap. (I live in a climate which allows either)
California is a big state, but since you live in the south, it may be that you are better suited to over-wintered onions.

As to the rain? Well it depends. If they were seeds, they'd likely be OK. Seeds are DESIGNED for tough times. Small plants too, if it was an isolated incident, I'd expect to make through, otherwise onions would have gone extinct a long time ago.
Just to help them along, try to put them somewhere so that a repeat event is precluded, and give them time to drain and get over their ordeal.
 
Joined
May 6, 2018
Messages
23
Reaction score
11
Location
Southern California
Hardiness Zone
9b
Country
United States
Thanks, bees!! I guess the bigger part of the equation is whether or not the seeds got washed away. LOL I will definitely relocate them if there is more adverse weather forecast.
 
Joined
May 6, 2018
Messages
23
Reaction score
11
Location
Southern California
Hardiness Zone
9b
Country
United States
I planted seeds for 24 Sweet Spanish Yellow Utah Jumbo onions about three to four weeks ago and just yesterday three of them poked their heads out of the planting pots. I used some kind of plant helper soil I bought. Does that seem like way too long to wait for them to even start showing??? I have concluded that I am a dismal failure at gardening. I planted 24 bean plant seeds and only ONE has started to grow. I think the soil I have in my yard is very, very sandy and not conducive to gardening. I need to prep it somehow. I'm very discouraged.
 
Joined
Mar 10, 2017
Messages
1,089
Reaction score
898
Location
NW Florida
Hardiness Zone
8
Country
United States
Are you direct sowing into the ground? How deep? Maybe some pictures of your garden area or seed starting method would help us figure out whats going on.

I'm pretty much just sand here, so everything I do is in a raised bed with good soil or in containers.
 
Joined
May 6, 2018
Messages
23
Reaction score
11
Location
Southern California
Hardiness Zone
9b
Country
United States
I am using plant starters (for lack of a better word) for the onions. I will try to post a photo. They are not directly in the ground (yet). I need to get my raised bed boxes set up so I can move these if I don't kill them like I seem to kill everything else.

51825
 
Joined
Mar 10, 2017
Messages
1,089
Reaction score
898
Location
NW Florida
Hardiness Zone
8
Country
United States
Just reread your earlier post. My guess is many of your seeds washed away. And your temps are maybe a little cool, allowing for slower germination. I'm still a novice, but that's my guess for you.

If your are starting in starter pots like that I would keep them someone a little more protected from the elements, otherwise there's really no benefit to the starter pots. Might as well direct sow. The point of using starter trays is to control the environment for best gemination. If you aren't controlling the environment, why do it? If direct sowing, heavy rain may wash to your seeds away from where you planted them. They'll survive the water, just might not stay put. I actually covered my carrots with a beach umbrella during a heavy rainfall a few days after planting!
 
Joined
May 6, 2018
Messages
23
Reaction score
11
Location
Southern California
Hardiness Zone
9b
Country
United States
I used the starter trays for a couple of reasons. First and foremost, we were finishing up some landscaping right where I want to put them. I also did it because I wanted to do more soil prep but that never happened. In any event, temps here are climbing fast. It's still a bit cool overnight (in the 50s) but we've been getting into the 80s already and even 90 on Monday. Soon it'll be well over 100 degrees here, which is our normal temperature in summer.
 

zigs

Naughty Cactus Moderator
Moderator
Joined
Oct 10, 2012
Messages
8,252
Reaction score
9,284
Location
Womenswold, Kent
Hardiness Zone
9a
Country
United Kingdom
The Kelsaes are starting to bulb up :) Resisting the temptation to feed them as that can cause bolting, but may need to pot them on into 3 litre pots.

DSCF1567.JPG
 
Joined
Mar 26, 2013
Messages
2,702
Reaction score
1,137
Location
Cheshire
Country
United Kingdom
They're looking great Zigs, but they'll still grow a bit more foliage before they bulb up.

If I may, woodash is a very low nitrogen amendment, with many micronutrients and a decent amount of potash.
Potash makes the bulbs swell; nitrogen makes them split.
A dusting as a top-dressing and they'll be great.
 

zigs

Naughty Cactus Moderator
Moderator
Joined
Oct 10, 2012
Messages
8,252
Reaction score
9,284
Location
Womenswold, Kent
Hardiness Zone
9a
Country
United Kingdom
Ta Bees :)

Woodash can be arranged, we have a huge WWII gun pit as a bonfire site (y)

DSCI0177.JPG
 
Joined
Mar 26, 2013
Messages
2,702
Reaction score
1,137
Location
Cheshire
Country
United Kingdom
None of my onions have yet gone over, so I'm hopeful of a decent crop.
Obviously, when they're cured, they'll be slightly smaller, but they look like nice onions, Zigs.
What variety are they?
 

zigs

Naughty Cactus Moderator
Moderator
Joined
Oct 10, 2012
Messages
8,252
Reaction score
9,284
Location
Womenswold, Kent
Hardiness Zone
9a
Country
United Kingdom
Ta Bees :)

I'll have a look in my seed bucket tomorrow, label is in there.

I remember these ones, Red Baron...

DSCF1704.JPG
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
May 6, 2018
Messages
23
Reaction score
11
Location
Southern California
Hardiness Zone
9b
Country
United States
Ta Bees :)

I'll have a look in my seed bucket tomorrow, label is in there.

I remember these ones, Red Baron...

View attachment 56448
Those are gorgeous!! How do I grow them like that?? I live in southern California in a desert climate that is usually at or above 100 degrees for a good part of the year. Can I grow these in this kind of climate??
 

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Top